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Bayern Munich prospect Malik Tillman to play for the USMNT


The growing pool of eligible players for the U.S. men’s national team reportedly gained another promising player on Thursday with Malik Tillman set to represent his birth country.

Tillman has made the decision to represent the United States, Kicker reported on Thursday. The highly-rated Bayern Munich prospect and younger brother of Timothy Tillman will reportedly play for the U.S. men’s national team program after more recently being part of Germany’s youth national team setup.

“We regret Malik’s decision – it surprised us a lot,” Germany U-21 head coach Antonio Di Salvo told Kicker. “We promoted him as a young player in the U21s, we placed a lot of trust in him and gave him match practice. In addition, we were in intensive talks regarding his prospects in the senior national team.”

Tillman was born in Nuremberg to a German mother and an American father, and has mainly played at club level in Germany. The 19-year-old has worked his way up the youth levels at Bayern Munich, totaling 103 combined appearances between the U-17, U-19, and U-23 levels.

Originally more of a central midfielder, Tillman has blossomed into an elite level striker, scoring goals in bunches in the Bayern Munich youth ranks to earn a rapid rise up Bayern’s pipeline.

Tillman has made seven appearances for Bayern’s first team, scoring one goal in Bundesliga action. Two of those seven appearances came in UEFA Champions League action, mainly featuring off of the bench.

Tillman previously represented the U.S. Under-15 boys national team in 2016, where he was teammates with Gio Reyna and made two appearances in a youth tournament in Croatia. Since then, Tillman has worked his way up the German youth national team level. He has earned 21 combined caps between five different German youth national teams, most recently scoring three goals in four appearances for the Under-21’s.

Tillman will turn 20-years-old later this May, which will rule him out of action for Mikey Varas’ squad. However, Tillman could feature in Berhalter’s USMNT squad for upcoming June friendlies and the Concacaf Nations League.


  1. I’m always happy to hear that a talented young prospects is committing to the USMNT, but we have to remember that at this point he is just a prospect. 8 years ago Julien Green was the highly regarded Bayern prospect. While I don’t think Green was given an opportunity the past 3-4 years, Julian has not lived up to the potential he showed as an 18 yr old. Only time will tell if Malik can/will become a serious contributor to the USMNT.
    If Malik is the duel national hinted at for the June games and he proves himself capable….Great. We need depth/options at forward….and with Malik, Pepi, Sargent, Dike & Ferreira it looks like we’ll have some good options for the next couple years. Hopefully they’ll all find themselves in good form & confidence ahead of the 2022 WC.
    As our recruiting and player development continues to improve we’ll hopefully be able to hire a real coach. Someone who can actually make use of the talent we have in our player pool and get them playing to their fullest capabilities.

  2. When Malik was in the U15s, I was feeling, “he’s gonna play for the US!” When he got older, and recently scored those goals in UEFA U21 tournament, I thought, “O he’s playing for Germany!” USA has U23/Olympic age, but nothing after the U20s like Europe does. ‘How the plot thickens!’ He plays in the NL gets captied. No harm! Then he’s got about 4 months of club futbol to prove himself as 9 or winger. MLS playoff players will be in season almost up, until the WC. (Ferreira, JMo (depending on national team CF move), Ebobisse, or long shots like B Vasquez, Bobby Wood, or even Zardes could be on hot streaks. A healthy Dike, Pefok, Sargent will have something to say. Hoppe, (I know it’s not up to me, but I would like to see him to stay in Spain, even if Mallorca stay up, or down). Pepi, & Haji Wright will have something to play for. That’s 12 guys, essentially competing for 3 roster spots, (26 players = 3 CFs, imo). The WC is so far away, we don’t know if a MLS draft pick, or U20 or U17 will be bangin goals in by the winter. What we do know is someone talented isn’t going to Qatar. Great pickup GB! Who’s going? I hope the 9s make GBs decision difficult, not for injury btw; but because they are healthy and playing well.

    • This manager is hoping one of these # 9’s is hot and banging them in the weeks before the roster decision is finalized.

      He already has the best US striker as an automatic starter, Pulisic. He should be hoping Gio is healthy and that one of these #9’s can partner Pulsic as well as Giroud did at Chelsea.

      The USMNT’s problem is they don’t create many chances for their attacking players. They have left their best creator, Gio out on the wing. BVB moved Gio into central midfield a long time ago.

      If Gio is not healthy or if the manager plays him at Center back, then the USMNT will have to try to shut teams down and play on the counter.

  3. As we have seen with Mexican-Americans making a switch, players go where they believe they can win a spot on the roster. I suspect Malik Tillman looked at both options, saw a clearer path with the US, and made the switch. I feel certain he’ll be on the summer roster.

    • I wonder if he’s thinking about teaming with his brother. Tim a possibility for the US but highly unlikely to ever represent Germany at the senior level. He did play with Reyna, Bello, and Busio for U15s.

  4. think i proposed this (him and his brother) about 3-4 years ago and got laughed at, but i guess once it’s coach-approved…..

    • Malik Tillman in 18/19 hadn’t played a professional match. He had a good season with U17s scoring 12g 6a in 14 matches. That seems amazing until you remember German U17s are regional and many of those came against the academies of 3rd and 4th division sides. No one laughed because he didn’t have potential they just said it was too early. When he moved up against U19s he had 1g 2a in 10 games (not impressive) Haji Wright 16g 12a in his first season in U19. The next season he finally played a professional match post Covid and did well in the 3Bundesliga. 20-21 he had an ACL and missed basically the whole season. Even at this point he has a total of 120 minutes against first division teams with 0g 0a. His 4th division stats from this year don’t even compare to Julian Greens 4th division numbers in 13/14. I suppose your hoping we cap Christiano Ronaldo Jr this summer for NL. I bet we can get him if we promise him a spot in Qatar.

      • he’s been BM2 since 2020 try again. when you’re wrong you correct people’s spelling and hope the gullible confuse that with being wrong.

      • 2019-2020 quote “the next season he moved up post Covid and did well.” Bayern II at the time was in 3Liga. What part of that is misleading. Prior to the Covid break he made all 26 of his appearances with their U19s. He was moved to Bayern II after U19 season was cancelled. 20-21 he played 90 minutes against Turkgucu and then was subbed 14 mins into match with Dresden with torn ACL. So in order to have called him you would have had to call him in fall of 2019 when he was only playing U19s because by the time he could have been called again in fall of 2020 (there was a global pandemic that paused international soccer you remember) vs Wales his ACL was in two pieces. So when exactly was Berhalter to have called him? Qualifying, he did play 1 match in August vs a 5th division side but was then sidelined with an injury until late November. So that rules him out of the first 8 qualifiers with injury. He was healthy and could have played in Jan. But had Corona in March and would have been unavailable.

    • “Tillman has made seven appearances for Bayern’s first team, scoring one goal in Bundesliga action.”

      It looks like his goal for Bayern was not in the Bundesliga, but was in the Cup. In a 12-0 win against a fifth tier team.

      So he and Pepi are still tied for goals in the Bundesliga with 0.

  5. “Malik Tillman set to represent his birth country.”
    “Tillman was born in Nuremberg to a German mother and an American father,”
    Seems a little inconsistent…


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