At 20 years and 319 days old, the Harwood defender became one of Bolton’s youngest-ever captains in a history-making squad whose average age was just 18-and-a-quarter.
Wanderers’ senior players withdrew their services over continued concern about the ownership of the club but the ‘Junior Whites’ dug deep to protect a clean sheet and frustrate the Sky Blues – much to Brockbank’s delight.
“We knew it was going to be tough, you don’t have to be a genius to know we were going to be up against it,” he told The Bolton News. “But we worked hard, tried to play with a bit of freedom and to enjoy the game. That was the main message – just make sure we take our chance.
“None of us expected we’d be playing in a team this young. We knew this season there would be a few chances but the lads who have played can hold their head high. I can’t praise them enough.
“We rode our luck at times but that’s the reward for working hard.”
Brockbank signed a two-year deal with Wanderers last week after training and playing for nothing over the summer and resisting interest from Sunderland, Burnley and Ipswich Town.
“My focus was on getting back here, working hard,” he said. “Bolton are the only team I want to play for.
“I was so happy I could sign the deal and push on for the next two years.
“I wanted to stay at Bolton. I’ve been here since I was eight years old, it means everything to me.
“To be captain… I wouldn’t have thought that could happen for 10 years. To have my family in the crowd to see it happen, that’s just a dream come true.
“I can’t count my friends because they’re all Bolton fans who were going to be here anyway.”
After another week of distraction off the pitch, Brockbank said the inclusion of Under-18s coaches Nicky Spooner and Gavin McCann helped settle an inexperienced dressing room.
“The theory was that we tried to focus on the game and not worry about that sort of stuff,” he said.
“We had Nicky Spooner and Gavin McCann with us – I mean, I’ve been with Nick since I was eight, he’s known me all my life. They know us that little bit better than the gaffer does, which is understandable, so it helped they were here.”