Brandon Williams celebrates at Sheffield United.

Magic moment: Brandon's belter at Bramall Lane

Wednesday 10 June 2020 17:00

Back in November, our Premier League match at Sheffield United was certainly not going to plan.

The Blades, performing way above expectations in their first season back in the top flight, were not only 2-0 up but cruising and looking comfortable against an out-of-sorts Manchester United.

We desperately needed a flash of inspiration, something to lift the team and the travelling fans, and it arrived from an unlikely source.

Watch Brandon Williams's first senior goal – a superb volley.

Brandon Williams sparked a glorious spell of classic United football – three goals in seven minutes – which turned a two-goal deficit into a 3-2 lead. Furthermore, fellow Academy graduates Mason Greenwood, with his first league strike, and Marcus Rashford also got in on the act.

Oliver McBurnie, who represented the Reds as a guest player at the Milk Cup during his youth, snatched a controversial late equaliser on the day, but there was still something to be proud of, even beyond the goals themselves.


Left-back Williams had not gone on tour in the summer – he was out in Austria with the Under-23s instead. But, even in the practice matches out there, the local lad was showing the sort of will to win that is clearly part of his make-up.

A first competitive outing of 2019/20 came in our maiden Trophy fixture, at Rotherham United, where he provided the assist for fellow full-back Ethan Laird to blast Neil Wood's side into the lead. The celebrations that followed showed how much playing in front of a sizeable away following was energising the youngsters and their performance indicated they could handle men's football.

Watch full highlights of the 3-3 draw at Sheffield United.

Local lad Williams is a passionate player and his heart must have been beating out of his chest when he showed composure to smack a right-footed half-volley past Blades keeper Simon Moore; the ball finding the bottom corner of the net with unerring precision.

Yet what did he do to mark this special moment, only 99 minutes into his overall Premier League career? 

There was no expression on his face – he realised we were still trailing and this was no time for celebration.

Brandon joined Wes Brown for the Defenders' Masterclass feature.

Greenwood's reaction was similar when pulling it back to 2-2. It is a mindset that has been taught from a young age and will stand these players in good stead for the future.

However, Brandon did allow himself a brief show of emotion as he made his way back to his position. Seeing the away fans celebrating, he threw his arms in the air to rouse them even further. It was far from Stuart Pearce against Spain in Euro '96 proportions, but it was a glimpse of what he was truly feeling inside.

Such energy and urgency, allied with determination to turn around what looked a lost cause, was marvellous to see in a teenager. It was a special moment that screamed one thing: hope.