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American teen Ben Lederman leaves Barcelona


Ben Lederman’s time with Barcelona is over as the midfielder will now move on to a new club.

The 18 year old’s time with Barcelona is over after spending seven seasons in the club’s academy. Lederman spent last season playing for the club’s U-18 team and, according to ESPN, is expected to join Belgian side Gent in pursuit of first team action.

“After seven years, it’s time to say goodbye to the best club in the world,” he wrote on social media.

“It’s been a unique and unforgettable experience at Barcelona. I want to thank all my teammates, coaches, physios, delegates and, above all, La Masia. You have all helped me improve as a footballer and as a person.

“A great spell in my life now comes to an end, but a new one begins — it’s time to keep fighting for my dream.”

Lederman’s time with Barcelona featured several ups and downs.┬áIn 2014, he was one of nine youth players ruled to have been signed illegally in a decision from FIFA, who barred the American from training with the club. Lederman returned to Barcelona after receiving a Polish passport.

Now, Lederman looks to join Gent, who finished fourth in the Belgian first division last season.


  1. Also Young(er) American Adrian Simons at La Masia. Starting at a similar age as Lederman did, I think. Madrid needs to join wagon again. Hopefully.

  2. I see this as good news. He’s never going to push thru at Barca in the next couple years now this move gives him a chance to get a couple looks for first team if he shows well in some of their lower levels first. Good progression and chances for first team minutes if he shows well.

    I see it this way. When Barca had to drop him due to the new FIFA/UEFA rules about underage kids they could have just let him go but instead as soon as he got a EU passport they brought him back. If they didn’t rate him at all then it would have been easier for them to just part ways with him them. They brought him back though and keep him in for another almost 2 years so there is something there for them to do that. Top leagues are choked full of former academy players from top clubs like Barca etc so no shame in this move at all. Could work out really well for both him and the NT if he progresses.

    • Not only Pulisic, but McKennie, Weah, Adams, Sargent, Klinsmann, CCV, Miazga, Robinson and I’m sure there are a few others that I’m forgetting. And that’s only looking at the young Americans in Europe. 10 years ago, this kid Lederman would have been big news; not so much anymore.

  3. When was the last time he was called up to a YNT camp? About 1year or so ago I think. Does anyone actually know how good he is other than he was at Barcelona academy.

    • There is another American (name escapes me) with the same Barca youth squad that was doing better. I would imagine he is going to join Gent’s U21 squad.

      • Konrad de la Fuente is at Barca. He’s playing for Juvenil B, but is starting to get integrated into Juvenil A now. He was named to the bench on the La Masia team of the year, which means he’s valued. Getting to Juvenil A is a pretty big step up, but even then only 1 or 2 of those players will ever even make the bench for Barcelona.

        Lederman wasn’t starting for Juvenil B last year for a lot of the time. Don’t know much other than that, but Belgium is a decent place to develop. If he progresses into some first team minutes in the next 2-3 years that would be a pretty big success I’d think.

      • Thanks, Joe and Jay, I came up with it while I was doing something else, but hadn’t had time to come back and post. Neither of those two really got nat camp call-ups which leads me to believe Barcelona weren’t excited about releases.

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