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Aaronson scores in Red Bull Salzburg debut


Brenden Aaronson wasted little time in opening his goalscoring account with Red Bull Salzburg, scoring in the club’s friendly win on Saturday.

Aaronson scored in Jesse Marsch’s side 6-0 win over second-division side Vorwaerta Steyr, showing good ability in the box for his goal. The former Philadelphia Union midfielder struck in the 52nd minute, receiving a pass from the left wing and slotting home from inside of the box.

“I am really pleased to have scored my first goal here in Salzburg, of course, but I had some great help in that from my team-mates,” Aaronson said post match. “It was a strong first match for us, even if we needed around 20 minutes to really get into it. The second half was really good for us, and we didn’t just score a lot of goals, but showed we can create a whole lot of dangerous moves too.”

Aaronson, 20, left the Union in October for the highest fee for a U.S.-based homegrown player in MLS history, with Salzburg paying an initial reported installment of $6 million with an additional $3 million paid to the Union if certain performance-based incentives are met.

The Medford, New Jersey native took major steps forward in 2020 for the Union after a breakout 2019 campaign. Aaronson did help Jim Curtin’s side win the Supporters’ Shield, a first trophy in club history for the Eastern Conference club.

Aaronson has been capped twice by the USMNT since making his debut on February 1st, 2020 against Costa Rica. He scored his first senior international goal and provided his first assist in a 6-0 friendly win over El Salvador in December.

Defending Austrian Bundesliga winners Red Bull Salzburg resumes league play on January 24th against Rheindorf Altach.


  1. Aaronson has good skill, very quick feet, good speed, passes well, seems to be able to run endlessly and is capable of turning up in good spots when he doesn’t have the ball. A knock is he is still slight, but he survived a couple seasons of MLS without major injury and will likely get bigger with age. I think he could play in a variety of positions very well. He covered for Bedoya when he was out quite effectively, his box-to-box ability is quite solid and he is capable of playing defensive mid well (even if he is not the most intimidating player.)

    He will do well in any position that any decent coach plays him. Whether he sill do better than other possible choices for the USMNT will always remain debatable, but facing such decisions with more than one good option is a novel thing for a USMNT coach.

  2. I’m not sure which conversation you’re talking about but I’m sure your accurate. Part of the problem is with BA you have three or four different systems. Curtin’s 4-4-2 diamond where Brenden generally played as the 10, the original 3G with a 10 and an 8/10, the new 3G with inverted wingers and dual 8s, and the RB 4-4-2 Double 6. If Marsch doesn’t play him as a LW he has to play him as a 6 and I don’t think that’s the best use of him. Gregg has played him in the 8/10 role which I think is where he’ll end up but RBS just doesn’t have that position. If the US used a 2 striker set again where Aaronson could be the second striker underneath I don’t think that would be bad at all. If he’s playing the Reyna/Pulisic role where he’s cutting in from his wide position with the FBs as width that’s fine too. Pomykal is a mystery, he’s got to get healthy and stay healthy.

    • I know, he came thru the Union academy but unlike Trusty, McKenzie, Real & Fontana, he wasn’t included in YNTs. Hackworth & Ramos, no CONCACAF tourneys or youth WCs. Now, he’s playing in Europe, before guys from the academy. Aaronson is definitely talented!! I wonder, how much talent we will see break through after’21. Players under the radar, I mean.

      • I think his build held him back a little probably and being a position of depth as opposed to a position of need. I’d say missing the U20 WC probably helped him because during the Summer of 2019 he really solidified his starting position at Union. At his age level he had Pax, Mendez, Ledezma, (Efra at one point). I’d say he’s still behind all three if they are healthy but at this point he’s the only one healthy. Would like to see him in March with the first team he made Przblko look good so what can he do with Reyna and Pulisic.

  3. I can’t find the thread. I remember having a discussion with JR about the future no 10/CM. I thought Pomykal would make a great 10, because I’ve seen him dribble the ball 40 yards in the middle of the pitch in several matches. His assists and goals aren’t there…yet. JR mentioned Aaronson would make a great 10. (Not a diss to JR, or anyone who thinks Aaronson is a CM). Curtin has been playing BA in a central position. In that thread, I said Aaronson runs and movements are more like a forwards, imo. Like Pomykal, BA stats say he’s not a forward. I have posted before about MLS players moving to Europe making positional changes. (Shea, G. Cameron, Alphonso Davies, etc.) I’m no genius. I didn’t discover anyone by watching them play. I don’t know the future of these gen Y players but it isn’t surprising to me that Marsch, who’s American views him as a striker/forward. Aaronson is one of 5 players, I can name, in the US player pool, who I think is capable of playing a false 9, in a 4-3-3. (Weah, Green, Morris, Mendez). Good luck to him & Marsch this year!


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