The first time Jordan Brown was involved in the West Ham first team squad was in Andorra. A month later he made his debut for the Irons in Romania. It was an exotic way for the young forward to break into the first team squad but he would soon become used to playing away in Europe after leaving the Hammers.
The former England youth international joined German side Hannover 96 in the summer of 2016 but he could have arrived earlier.
“At the time, I had an agent and he knew a couple of locals who knew some people at Hannover,” says Brown. “I went for a short trial and I was going to sign in January 2016 but the deal didn’t go through as I had played for too many clubs that season so then I had to wait until the end of the season.”
The young forward had already played for West Ham and Chelmsford City on loan but there was no stopping him from joining the German club in the summer. In his first season with the club’s second team, he made 26 appearances, scoring six times from just ten starts. Three of those goals came against Gary Noel’s VfB Lübeck and in one game in October 2016, both Englishmen were on the scoresheet.
Last season, Brown featured in 14 matches, seven of which were starts, scoring three times, including another goal against Lübeck. After two years with the club, he is now looking for a new team after learning lots from his foreign adventure.
“My two years in Germany taught me that to be at the ultimate peak level, football is really hard on you physically. What we were doing was the hardest training weeks that I have ever been involved in, apart from pre-season. It was really hard at first but when my body got used to it, my natural ability and physicality coped and then I could show my football ability.”
The only down side from the former Arsenal youngster’s time in Germany were that his first team opportunities were limited.
“I never really got my chance for first team,” he says. “I trained among a few players time to time but was never thrown into traini like that [with the first team]. Only a couple 11 v 11 matches here and there, which was disappointing.”
Now a free agent, Brown is still only 21 and has a lot to offer at a new club.
“I would describe myself as a hard working player who is always looking to help the team and most importantly to score goals. I play off the shoulder mostly or I like to face up a defender, shift the ball and shoot.”
Having started his career at Arsenal before moving to West Ham and playing for England under-16s, Brown has been touted as hot prospect and he is now ready to deliver on that potential.
“My ambitions for the future are to really start my career and start playing games for a club and racking up a goal tally.”
There’s no doubt that the experience Brown has earned playing in Germany will benefit him in the future. We’ve seen the positive impact that a move to Germany can have for other English players like Ademola Lookman and Jadon Sancho and Brown and is willing to prove himself abroad again in the future, having already impressed following the gamble he took to move to Hannover when he was just 19.