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Adams “hungry for more” Champions League experience with RB Leipzig

Tyler Adams’ first full Bundesliga season with RB Leipzig is in the books, but the midfielder will soon be back in action in hopes of leading his team to a trophy.

Adams and Leipzig finished third in the league this season, behind winners Bayern Munich and runners-up Borussia Dortmund. The club is filled with top talent, but inevitably didn’t make the most of their matches, finishing 16 points behind Bayern and tied for the league lead with 12 draws.

The 20-year-old midfielder is heading back to the United States for a short break before returning to Leipzig to restart preparations for the UEFA Champions League tournament. Julian Nagelsmann’s side eliminated Tottenham to clinch a berth in the quarterfinals and will seek a first-ever championship in the tournament.

After making his debut in the competitions earlier this year, Adams is excited to get going again and gain more experience in Europe’s top club competition.

“I’m excited to head home and see my family,” Adams said in an interview for the club’s website. “With everything that’s been going on, traveling hasn’t been very easy, but luckily I’m able to go back and see them.”

“I’m very hungry for more [Champions League matches]. I got a taste of what it’s like to play in the Champions League, so I can’t wait to play more games in it after the break. I think it’s a good opportunity for us. The way the format is set up levels the playing field completely. No team would want to draw us because we can be a problem in a one-game match.”

Adams made 14 appearances in all competitions for Leipzig this season, dealing with both muscular strains and an adductor injury at separate points. With the Bundesliga season halted for two months due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Adams stayed ready and played a part in Leipzig’s nine matches.

The versatile player featured as a wingback as well in midfield in Nagelsmann’s system, playing the full 90 minutes in matches against Hertha Berlin, Fortuna Dusseldorf, and Paderborn.

Adams is one of many Americans making an impression in Germany with Weston McKennie, Giovanni Reyna, Josh Sargent, and John Brooks also excelling with their respective clubs. When asked about which American talent he would like to make a move to Germany in the future, Adams couldn’t pass up a former teammates within the New York Red Bulls Academy.

“We have so many good young, talented players,” Adams said. “I would say a player like Timothy Weah. He played for PSG and now he’s at Lille. He’s a top player.”

“We grew up in New York together, he played for New York Red Bull Academy as well, so he has some Red Bull ties too.”

Adams and Leipzig are not the favorite to win the Champions League when it returns in August, but they are a team to watch in the knockout rounds. The U.S. Men’s National Team midfielder ended his league season on a high and will now look to do the same against some of Europe’s best teams.


  1. Leipzig is losing Werner, who is going to Chelsea, so that’s a huge whole in their attack. Depending on who they get, that might affect how much Adams plays. If they spend the $59 million transfer fee mostly on attackers, then Adams probably won’t be affected. But, if they get some defensive mids, he may lose minutes next season. He needs to do well in the CL to cement his place on the squad.

    • They’re already bringing in one of Marsch’s CF from Salzburg and Paulson should return from injury so they might not splash much more on CFs. You’d think they’d add at least one DM since Demme’s departure in January. Nagalsman seems to adjust his formations to match his opponents so I think Tyler’s versatility will keep him in the lineup regularly.

  2. If Adams appears in the Champions League quarterfinals, he will join a *very tiny* group of USMNT players who have ever done so. By my count, it’s John O’Brien, DaMarcus Beasley, Jermaine Jones, and Christian Pulisic. Among these, only DMB made it through to the semi-finals, and no USMNT player (apologies Neven Subotic) has ever made it through to the final. For clarity, while Jovan Kirovski remains the only USMNT player to claim a Champions League Winners medal, he did not actually play in the the knockout rounds during BvB’s title run.

    • Next year we will hopefully see a few more names added to the list. Adams, Reyna, & Dest are all with very good teams and are all providing significant contributions to their clubs 1st teams. Still remains to be seen if Chelsea will hold onto a Champions League spot for next season….so Pulisic may not have an opportunity to go beyond the quarterfinals just yet.
      Chris Richards is making strides….but it’s hard to tell if he’ll be ready for this type of level next year or if he’ll be loaned out somewhere to gain 1st team experience.

      • I think it was CBS Sports website was reporting Richards will be loaned out for next season but that Flick has him in the future plans at Bayern.

      • According to Transfermkt, Richards also has interest from Valencia, Liverpool, and Chelsea but that seems like long term interest not for next season. According to them Flick really rates him and wants to keep him. Current rumor is that Boatang is staying but Martinez for sure and likely Alaba are leaving. Might be interesting if those two decide like Werner not to play Richards would likely dress for the CL knockouts in August. Bayern picked up an 18 year old CB from PSG that played some last season. He’s a RCB/DM which doesn’t help Richards who seems more comfortable on the right than the left. If I had to bet though I’d say lower Bundesliga or higher quality 2Bundesliga. Stuttgart would be fun with their American manager.

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