By DAN KARELL
In a match that gave Bayern Munich a record 10th-consecutive victory in UEFA Champions League play, another milestone was achieved as well.
Just a few weeks after signing his first ever professional contract with the German giants, 18-year-old attacking midfielder Julian Green made his full debut on Wednesday afternoon, entering as a second half substitute in Bayern’s 3-1 victory at CSKA Moscow.
With the match already beyond reach, the young German-American entered in the 88th minute in place of goal-scorer Mario Götze. Green didn’t have a chance to record a touch before the final whistle, but his rise to the first team comes after a strong start with the Bayern Munich reserve squad, where he has scored 15 goals in 18 matches.
Green was included in the Bayern squad for the Champions League match in Moscow due to a number of injuries in the first team. Established players such as Mario Mandzukic, Franck Ribery, Bastian Schweinsteiger, and Claudio Pizarro all were unavailable for the midweek game.
The Florida-born Green accepted but later declined a call-up to the U.S. Men’s National Team to train during their November camp. Green declined after realizing that he’d have to file a one-time switch with FIFA in order to play for the USMNT in their two friendly matches. Green is currently cap-tied to Germany after featuring for their Under-19 side in UEFA U-19 Championship qualification matches.
Green is still eligible to represent either the United States or Germany at the international level.
Bayern’s victory on Wednesday assured them of a place in the Champions League knockout round, meaning that their final group stage match against Manchester City at home will only serve to determine who finishes in first place. Since Bayern is participating at the Club World Cup (Dec. 17-21) as defending Champions League title holders, there’s a good chance that Green could see more first team action either in the game against Man City or in the Club World Cup.
What do you think of this news? Glad to see Green make his Champions League debut? Do you see Green playing in the next Champions League match against Man City?
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