First there was Giuseppe Rossi. Then there was Edgar Castillo. Could Neven Subotic be the next player eligible for the U.S. national team to pass up the USA for another country?
As I told you a while back, Subotic wasn’t planning to address his future and national team decision until later this year at the earliest. ESPN colleague Jeff Carlisle secured an interview with Subotic and delivered a very interesting story on him and his potential decision, which Subotic says now won’t be made until after the 2008/2009 Bundesliga season.
"Right now, with my move to Dortmund, it looks like I will first make any kind of decision regarding national teams after my first season here," Subotic told ESPN.com. "It’s already tough enough to fight for a starting spot here, and I don’t need any extra baggage at this early point in my career."
That’s the part that is easy to forget about Subotic. He is still just 19 (and won’t be 20 until December). It’s easier to get caught up in the fact that he’s a 6-foot-4 center back who just made a $5.4 million move to German Bundesliga force Borussia Dortmund.
If you read the ESPN.com story you can’t help but feel as if Subotic is waiting to see what comes from his potential eligibility for Germany. As i wrote a few months back, Subotic could wind up gaining eligibility for Germany based on the nine years he spent living in Germany before moving to the United States. You can rest assured that lawyers are working on this case as we speak and the Germany Federation would be foolish not to be working on his behalf to help secure his services.
In fairness to Subotic, you have a player with strong ties to Serbia who also lived in Germany for a longer time than he lived in the United States. It can’t be an easy decision and he must surely appreciate the role the United States played in his development as a player. Consider he has until his 21st birthday to make a final decision, you can’t really blame him if he wants to take his time.
For now we are left with the question. Will Subotic play for the United States? It’s a question that’s been asked for a while now, and it looks like we will have to wait another year to find out.
What do you think about the Subotic situation? What do you think he will do? Share your thoughts below.