TRANSFER TRACKER STATUS: Signing
RSL announced on Wednesday that the club has acquired the 20-year-old attacker from Liverpool FC on a permanent basis in the wake of his successful 2017 loan stint. Lennon has signed a new contract with his once and future club, becoming the seventh member of the current squad to rise through the youth ranks and into the first team.
“Lennon is another key player in what we believe to be one of the youngest and most exciting attacking groups in the league, and Brooks adds depth to the choices the coaching staff possess each day as he can fill multiple roles within the front four and play them all very well,” said RSL general manager Craig Waibel in a club release.
“Brooks took a different route than most, from Arizona to England and back to Utah – and he’s now come back to our club and found success here on the field, and we expect even bigger things in 2018. This is a big milestone for our academy as we continue to develop our own, and to welcome Brooks home full-time is phenomenal.”
A product of the RSL academy who moved to the English giants as a teenager, Lennon scored three goals and four assists in 25 MLS appearances (15 starts), helping spark a midseason revival that nearly earned Salt Lake an unlikely berth in the Audi 2017 MLS Cup Playoffs. RSL were one of the league’s hottest teams down the stretch, posting an 8-3-4 record over the final 15 matches of the season but finished just one point shy of the Western Conference’s sixth and final postseason berth.
Lennon was one of five RSL academy products to feature on the US Under-20 national team that won the CONCACAF Championship for the first time in program history, then made a run to the quarterfinals of the 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup, chipping in six goals and three assists for Tab Ramos’ side.
“I’m ecstatic, I knew I wanted to stay at Real Salt Lake,” said Lennon. “Under the leadership of Mike Petke I thought I made huge strides in my development and I matured as a player on and off the field. It was a no-brainer for me to re-sign and I know that we have the quality to compete for hardware and I’m excited to do that with a group of players that I grew up playing with.”
A native of Paradise Valley, Arizona, Lennon now becomes a full-time member of the Salt Lake youth movement headlined by fellow academy alums Danilo Acosta, Jordan Allen, Justen Glad, Jose Hernandez, Aaron Herrera and Sebastian “Bofo” Saucedo. RSL open their 2018 campaign at FC Dallas on March 3.