Lee Buchanan signs for Werder Bremen from Derby County having been tipped by compatriot Wayne Rooney to one day represent England. - © IMAGO/nordphoto GmbH / Rauch/IMAGO/Nordphoto
Lee Buchanan signs for Werder Bremen from Derby County having been tipped by compatriot Wayne Rooney to one day represent England. - © IMAGO/nordphoto GmbH / Rauch/IMAGO/Nordphoto

Lee Buchanan: Who is Werder Bremen's new England youth international?


Werder Bremen have recruited English youngster Lee Buchanan. bundesliga.com has the lowdown on the latest British talent to land in Germany's top flight...

Lee Buchanan

Age: 21
Werder Bremen
Left-back / Centre-back
England (seven youth international caps)

Key stats

Buchanan was born 7 March 2001 in Mansfield, and made the 40 minute drive south to Derby at just nine years of age. He spent a further nine years in the Rams' youth setup and lifted the U18 Premier League trophy in 2018/19, making 13 appearances, scoring once and adding two assists in the process. As a result of that triumph, Derby qualified for the UEFA Youth League the following campaign and Buchanan - now in the first-team setup - had one outing in Europe where he helped his team to a 3-1 win over a Borussia Dortmund side that contained the likes of Youssoufa Moukoko and Ansgar Knauff.

Lee Buchanan has made seven appearances for England's youth sides. - Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

Buchanan got his first taste of senior football when he made Derby's Matchday 28 squad for their 2-1 Championship win over Reading in January 2019 and he went on to make his first-team debut the following year. His professional bow came on the fifth week of the 2019/20 season and, as well as picking up five league appearances, the youngster scored his first goal for the club by grabbing the winner in the first round of the League Cup. By the 2020/22 season, Buchanan was a regular in the side and he has chalked up 65 games across the past two Championship campaigns for Derby. In total, he departs for Werder with 75 professional games under his belt, as well as one goal and four assists.

Plays a bit like: Ashley Cole

Quick, strong, good on the ball and a player that enjoys defending as much as he does attack from the left-flank, there is certainly a hint of England, Arsenal and Chelsea defender Cole in Buchanan's play.

Buchanan had the opportunity to share a training ground with Cole as he made the transition from a final playing assignment to his first coaching position at Derby and he will certainly have benefitted from learning from the best left-back England has ever produced.

Where Buchanan differs from Cole is his ability to play in the centre of defence and he "admired Rio Ferdinand" in his youth, while former Derby coach Wayne Rooney said: "I like Lee as a centre back. It's something I have been looking at in training for a bit with his speed and he's good in the air." If Buchanan can go on to have anywhere near as much success as any of those illustrious countrymen, he'll have a bright future in the game.

Did you know?

Buchanan has represented England youth sides on seven occasions and received his first England U21 call-up in November 2020 alongside fellow first-timer - and now Germany international - Jamal Musiala in a squad that also boasted Jude Bellingham in its ranks.

Cole was working with England at the time and, as well as his illustrious former teammate, Buchanan has already had the benefit of working with some of the biggest names in the game. His most recent head coach at Derby was England legend Rooney, while he was called up to his first senior matchday squad by Rooney's old international teammate Frank Lampard and handed his professional debut by Netherlands great Phillip Cocu.

What they're saying

"Lee Buchanan has got a really bright future and I am sure he will play for England within the next couple of years." - England record goalscorer Rooney again

"He's a very talented player who has a lot of experience despite still being young. We think he's got a serious amount of potential, and he plays with dynamism and real intensity." - Werder director of professional football and scouting, Clemens Fritz

"Lee is mostly at home on left-back. He is well trained and already brings a lot with him. He opens up even more possibilities for us on the defensive and we are convinced that he will take another step in his development with us." - Werder head coach Ole Werner