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Green aiming to break through with Bayern, USMNT


Julian Green has seen some real peaks and valleys throughout his young career. A 2014 World Cup goal solidified the young forward’s status as American soccer’s next big thing, but the struggles that have come since saw the 21-year-old all but fade out of the picture for both club and country. However, it now seems that Green’s career has reached a major turning point.

Under new manager Carlo Ancelotti, the Bayern Munich product appears to be back on the fast track with one of Germany’s biggest clubs. After shining in preseason with a hat-trick performance against Inter Milan, Green was named to Bayern Munich’s first team ahead of the 2016-17 season. Most recently, Green was counted among Bayern’s substitutes for a 2-0 win over Borussia Dortmund in the German SuperCup, as Ancelotti’s vocal faith in the young forward has been backed up by a spot on the matchday roster.

Green is certainly not looking ahead. A long road is ahead of him on the club level, but it appears that after years of not living up to the excessive hype that had come to surround him, Green is truly back on track.

“I think that he is doing well in this moment for us,” Ancelotti told Fox Soccer. “He has to know, everyone has to know, that Bayern is really competitive. Not only for him, Julian Green, but for all of the players. We’ll wait and see what happens during the season. ”

“At the end, I have to show it everyday,” Green added. “Keep up the hard work, work on me everyday. That was my goal for the preseason and all of my life in football.”

Green’s work has caught the eye of some of Bayern’s biggest stars. Originally deployed on the wing throughout his career, Green has slotted in at forward in recent weeks, and the move paid dividends almost immediately to the tune of four preseason goals.

Veterans Javi Martinez and Xabi Alonso have joined Ancelotti in praising the young forward, something that Green says has motivated him even further. However, one man that Green is still battling to impress is U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsman.

After breaking into the USMNT picture with five caps in 2014, Green has appeared just once since. The lone appearance, a pre-Copa America friendly against Puerto Rico, saw Green play just 27 minutes in a match littered with faces unfamiliar to the national team picture.

Sandwiched between USMNT appearances were a handful of matches with the U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team with varying success. As things stand, Bayern remains firmly entrenched as goal No. 1 for the young forward, who admits that it is hard not to think about representing his country on the highest level despite the upcoming club campaign.

“If I do my thing here, if I can play, if I work hard every day, I’m sure I can be back with the national team,” Green said. “I want to be back with the team and to play for the U.S.

“(Klinsmann and I) always stay in touch,” Green added. “We always keep in contact. He’s watching me, and that’s the best.”

Green says he keeps in frequent contact with USMNT teammates John Brooks and DeAndre Yedlin but, for now, his focus remains on breaking through at Bayern. The path is difficult, especially at the forward position, where Green will battle superstars like Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Muller for minutes throughout the Bundesliga season.

Still, that battle is quite the step up from the frustrations of previous seasons. Since that breakthrough World Cup goal against Belgium, Green has remained far from Bayern’s senior side. A loan at Hamburg failed miserably in the fall after the World Cup. Upon his return to Bayern, Green settled back into the reserves. It wasn’t always easy, but a 10-goal campaign last season was enough to catch the eye of Ancelotti upon his Bayern arrival.

Green’s task is now to stay in Ancelotti’s plans and continue to push the first team stars ahead of him.

“Bayern has always been my club. I’ve played here since I was 14-years-old,” Green said. “I grew up near Munich. It’s my dream to play here for the first team and I will work hard for it.”


  1. hypothetical: if we qualified for the Men’s tournament at the Olympics, does that help or hurt players like Green and Gooch that have used their good pre-seasons to put them into positions to get PT this season?

    No doubt it would have been great for guys like Yedlin, Miagza and Zelalem that are more likely to go on loan. but Olympic qualification, as much as I would have enjoyed it, would have had its pro’s and con’s.

    • Its not even a given Yedlin, Miazga, and Zelalem would have been in the Olympics had we qualified because of their club situations. Of course others who aren’t in the spotlight could have seen their stocks grow so its a trade off for sure.

      On another note apparently losing to Honduras wasn’t so bad after all.

  2. Yeah, but our striker crop is far from reliable. Sure Jozy is healthy now and Gooch and Pulisic are getting surprising minutes, but just as quickly those two could be back on the bench or even the reserves, Rubin is headed in this direction as we speak. And Jozy will be back in the training room any minute.
    What we need most of our forwards is some consistency, that’s one of the few things Zardes has going for him. Julian will probably need regular minutes to find that consistency too, and that might be tough this year.

    • I agree that meaningful minutes is extremely important for our players. It’s also true dips in form and injuries are always a worry for any player/team. Therefore having depth/options is paramount to having a successful national team. The good news is that there are at least 12 attacking players within the USMNT player pool who are competing at a good level….
      5 playing in the Bundesliga (Wood, Pulisic, Green, Boyd, Johannsson)
      4 playing in MLS (Jozy, Zardes, Morris, Menneh)
      1 playing in the EPL (Gooch)
      1 playing in Holland (Rubin)
      1 playing in Liga MX (Arriola)

      There are others that could be listed/included in the discussion as well, but these are the most likely candidates IMO that have a chance to impact the USMNT. This is an incredible starting point as we head towards the Hex and hopefully the 2018 WC. These 12 players now have just under 2 yrs to really show that they belong and are up to the challenge.

      • Yeah, I dunno that I’d writer off Deuce just yet. He’ll be 35 when the World Cup hits but Miroslav Klose was 36 when he featured for Germany in Brazil and I think Deuce could be our version of that…Deuce’s game, unlike Donovan’s, was never based on speed, and he can just plain do things other guys in the pool can’t, so I’m not too sure he hits the wall in the next two years like speed guys all tend to after 30. I dunno if I’d like him as a full-time starter by Russia (though he might still be) but as an off-the-bench option he could be a game-changer…or a game-saver.

  3. If Green can remain in contention for Bayern this season (making the game-day 18, and seeing some time across their multiple competitions) he’ll be back in the mix for the USMNT. However, he’s going to be seeing competition there as well. Looking at the past month or so the options at attacking positions for the US have improved significantly….
    Jozy – Back to full health and scoring. But will be under pressure by others returning to health.
    Wood – Performed well during the Copa America. Now needs to secure starting XI with his club.
    Pulisic – At a similar position as Green w/ BvB. Needs to make most of his opportunities.
    Zardes – Not as technical, but has the physical tools & desire to be a major factor for the USMNT.
    Morris – Another physical forward who needs to work on his technical side.
    Gooch – Surprise start opening weekend, a player to watch going forward.
    Rubin – Back to health and starting in Holland. another player to watch going forward.
    Arriola – A wide attacker similar to Pulisic & Gooch. Seeing good minutes in Liga MX.
    Boyd – Returning to health, and could be a major asset if he regains form. Challenge to Jozy.
    Johannsson – Returning to health, and could be a major asset.
    Menneh – Another wide attacker who could compete against Pulisic, Gooch, & Arriola.

    Being game fit, and seeing regular minutes for their clubs will be a major factor for who ultimately will be in contention for the USMNT roster spots. These are all good players who are going to make the selection process difficult for the coaches. It’s an exciting time to be a USMNT fan.


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