There was a time, roughly ten years back, when a 14 year old named Freddy Adu graced the nation with a contract at DC United. Adu was living out the dream of every young footballer. He became an instant star after appearing in a Sierra Mist commercial with Brazilian football icon Pele. The Ghanaian-American was dubbed the next big sensation in the United States, but where is he now?
25 year old Freddy Adu is currently playing for Serbian side Jagodina. While the former IMG Academy standout failed to succeed on the big stages of professional football, there is a new youngster waiting in the wings of American football stardom. His name is Julian Green.
It’s not fair to put this type of pressure on a young athlete, and maybe that is why Adu didn’t rise to the occasion, but Green seems different. Similarly to Adu, the Bayern Munich winger is a dual citizen. Green displays something that Adu failed to grasp at a young age though, maturity. It’s not often that a 19 year old can boast about a goal on soccer’s biggest stage, but the German-American did just that after volleying home an effort during the USA’s Round of 16 clash with Belgium. The starlet only played 15 minutes the entire tournament, all of which came in the US’ elimination match.
He has been praised by teammates and US manager Jurgen Klinsmann time and time again, but now he is back with one the world’s top clubs. The biggest question surrounding Green following the World Cup was whether he would be able to get playing time with Bayern Munich. It seems evident that Bayern coach Pep Guardiola will give the teen every opportunity to prove himself.
The Bundesliga champions are currently touring America and will face the MLS All Stars on August 6, where Green will potentially play against a team comprised of his fellow national squad mates. With the likes of World Cup champions Thomas Muller and Mario Gotze in Bayern’s squad, consistently starting for the German champions this upcoming season seems unlikely.
While it is a challenge to say the least, don’t discount this youngster. He displays all of the necessary abilities that a team wants in a superstar player. His agility, footwork, and finishing are just a few of those qualities. The US national is as professional as they come for a teenager. With the exception of maybe getting a little physical and putting some weight on, I don’t see any reason that this kid can’t shine in Germany.
Green has made it clear that he doesn’t want another loan spell, and will prove to Guardiola and the rest of his Bayern team that he deserves his shot. Personally, I believe that this is the best thing for the 19 year old. Bayern are involved in many competitions, which include Champions League and domestic competition. This means an excessive amount of matches will be played.
The Florida native will have his chances to shine this upcoming season, so long as he maintains his health and continues his maturation. We may have to wait four more years to see Julian Green at a World Cup, but this young man is going places. He’ll surely be on display next summer at the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup and the following summer, when the US host Copa America Centenario. Between his humbleness and clear talent on the pitch, the United States may just have found their next star.