Mexborough, Yorkshire outside left born Eric Brook is widely considered a Manchester City great, being their all time record goalscorer until 2018 when Sergio Aguero passed his total. He signed for Second Division Barnsley for £200 in February 1926 from Wath Athletic, whom he’d joined in 1924, making his Football League debut at Derby County that April, he was an ever present in his first full season (1926-27) and he scored 18 goals in 81 games for The Tykes over the next two years before joining Manchester City with Fred Tilson for a combined £6,000 in March 1928, helping City to the Second Division Championship at the end of the season.
Over the next twelve seasons he scored 178 goals for City in 494 appearances, of which 158 were in the League. He was an ever present in 1928-29 scoring 14 goals as City finished third in the League Championship. Having collected a loser’s medal in the 1933 FA Cup Final, scoring his first hat-trick for The Citizens in the fifth round in a win over Bolton Wanderers in February 1933, he went one better in 1934 when they won the FA Cup beating Portsmouth 2-1 at Wembley with two late Tilson goals.
In March 1936 Bolton were again on the receiving end of a Brook treble as City beat them 7-0 at Maine Road, Brook having scored a hat-trick in an FA Cup win over Portsmouth in January. He also won the League Championship with City in 1937 scoring a career best 22 goals that season including a hat-trick in a 5-0 win at Liverpool in March 1937, but despite him scoring 17 goals the next season, including 4 in a 7-1 thumping of West Brom in April 1938, they were relegated to the Second Division in a remarkable reversal of fortune. His final hat-trick came in a 4-3 win over Nottingham Forest in November 1938.
For England he scored 10 goals in 18 appearances between 1929 and 1937, making his debut in a 3-0 win against Ireland at Windsor Park, Belfast in October 1929. He also appeared on 7 occasions for The Football League. He also won two England wartime international caps in 1939 but retired from football after a car crash in 1940 left him with a fractured skull.