Amidst an influx of impressive young talent coming to Major League Soccer from South America, the Bundesliga is raiding the U.S. for young players. So while American teenagers may not be having any luck breaking into lineups at home, they’re finding more opportunities in the league of the world champions. To steal a line from Taylor Twellman, what are we doing?
Legendary German midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger has elected to re-sign with Major League Soccer’s Chicago Fire for an additional year on a Designated Player contract for the 2018 season. The Fire paid Schweinsteiger $5.4 million last year, but details have yet to be released concerning the new contract.
The fallout to the Jonathan Gonzalez switch from the U.S. to Mexico has been immense. We’ve covered it here and here. Simply put: The U.S. appears to be failing in its pursuit of identifying and recruiting Mexican-Americans to compete for the national team. But the possibility of a Timothy Tillman switch is proof U.S.
USMNT and Borussia Dortmund star Christian Pulisic recently sat down for an exclusive interview with ESPN FC from Dortmund’s winter training camp in southern Spain, taking time to answer questions from Raphael Honigstein ranging from the USA’s World Cup failure to how he deals with the burden of expectation as a 19-year-o
American teenager Weston McKennie entered a friendly match for Schalke against Genk at halftime on Sunday. That’s completely normal — the midfielder made 14 Bundesliga appearances in the first half of league play. What was abnormal was the position McKennie played for the entirety of the second half: center back.
McKennie, 19, replaced 35-year-old Brazilian Naldo at the heart of Schalke’s three-man defense. And although Genk scored a late consolation, McKennie impressed in a 2-1 victory for the Germans over the Belgians in Spain.
Bayer Leverkusen manager Heiko Herrlich has been hit with a fine approaching $14,500 after taking a comedy tumble during his side’s DFB-Pokal match against Borussia Monchengladbach on December 20. Bayer would win the game 1-0, but Herrlich apologized after the match for his hysterics following Denis Zakaria’s near-impingement on his personal space.
“That was stupid,” said Herrlich. “I’d like to apologize.”
17-year-old Missouri native Josh Sargent made his Werder Bremen debut on Tuesday while appearing for the club’s U-23 team in a friendly versus Dynamo Dresden. Sargent officially joined the club on Jan. 1 and won’t be able to sign a professional contract until turning 18 on February 20, but the eagle has landed.
Lukas Podolski, a World Cup winner with Germany and a former striker for Arsenal and Bayern Munich, has always been a fan favorite, wherever he goes. The man with a hammer for a left leg is finishing out his career in Japan with Vissel Kobe right now, but while back in Cologne rehabbing an injury he opened up a doner kebab shop over the weekend to plenty of fanfare.
Liverpool has finally sold Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona. Initial numbers suggest Coutinho will net the Reds in the neighborhood of $192.7 million, a decent chunk of change for Jurgen Klopp to spend on a replacement or six. So let’s go ahead and start the totally unfounded Christian Pulisic to Liverpool speculation.
Nigel de Jong, a former Dutch international whose most famous moment on a football pitch was when he kicked Xabi Alonso in the chest in the 2010 World Cup final and somehow didn't get sent off, has officially moved from Galatasaray in Turkey to Mainz in Germany.