David Brooks has set his sights on making a major impact for Wales at next year’s delayed Euro 2020 finals.
The Wales forward might have struggled to make this summer’s tournament, originally scheduled for June, due to a serious ankle injury which has meant he has not played a game this season.
But the re-scheduling of the finals means Bournemouth star Brooks, as well as injured Wales teammate Joe Allen, have 12 months to get back to their best.
Brooks would have been close to making a return to action in the Premier League had the coronavirus crisis not intervened and said: “Football is obviously not the main focus at the minute.
“I’ve been out for eight months. I like to think I would have been fit and up to speed this summer. But on a personal and selfish note it’s not the worst thing for me.”
The 22-year-old former Sheffield United player has not kicked a ball competitively this season, after sustaining an ankle ligament injury during a pre-season friendly at Brentford last July.
He has since undergone two operations and had been back in training with Eddie Howe’s squad for the business end of their top-flight campaign.
In an interview with talkSPORT, he added: “The season ended abruptly and I was just starting to integrate back into the team.
“I was in and around training and trying to get up to match speed. It’s put a bit of a dampener on where I was at.
“I can’t train anymore. I can do a bit of running but I need to be getting back up to football levels.
“Kicking a football helps you get up to the standard before starting to play again – and I can’t really do that at the minute.”
Brooks enjoyed a breakthrough season with Bournemouth last season, scoring seven goals in 30 Premier League games and establishing himself as a key player under Ryan Giggs during Wales’ successful Euro qualification campaign.
As he awaits a return, UEFA will hold a video conference on Wednesday with its 55 member federations as part of discussions on the potential rescheduling of matches postponed due to the coronavirus crisis.
The meeting will see football’s European governing body share an update on the progress made by the two working groups that were created two weeks ago in response to the crisis caused by the pandemic and following the decision to postpone the European Championship by a year.
“The meeting will look at developments across all UEFA national team and club competitions, as well as discussing progress at FIFA and European level on matters such as player contracts and the transfer system,” UEFA said in a statement.
UEFA previously stated their wish to finish the current season by June 30, the date when many players’ contracts expire.
Carrying the season on beyond that date runs the risk of clubs losing their out-of-contract players before matches have been completed, unless a solution can be found.
However, UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin told Italian daily La Repubblica last weekend that all options were under consideration in an effort to salvage the season, including starting again “in mid-May, in June or even late June”.
The impact of the pandemic on Europe has forced UEFA to put Euro 2020 back 12 months and suspend all club competitions until further notice. The Champions League and Europa League have both been frozen at the last-16 stage.
UEFA’s working group features three of its own members along with three from the European Club Association, one from the European Leagues body representing nearly a thousand clubs in 29 countries, one representative from La Liga in Spain and one from the English Premier League.
World football’s governing body FIFA has also set up a working group to deal with the consequences of the pandemic, including on players’ contracts and transfers and to deal with the economic impact on the game.