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Caden Clark joins Vendsyssel on loan for remainder of 2023


Caden Clark’s next stop will be in Denmark as the young American midfielder aims to get back to playing regularly.

Clark has joined Danish second-tier side Vendsyssel FF on loan for the remainder of 2023, both clubs announced Friday. The former New York Red Bulls homegrown previously was linked with a return to MLS, but now will remain in Europe.

A native of Blaine, Minn., Clark remains under contract with German Bundesliga club RB Leipzig, but has not dressed this season.

Eredivisie side FC Twente were originally linked with a potential loan deal for Clark, German outlet Bild reported earlier this summer. However, no additional interest has come to fruition with Clark’s immediate future remaining unknown.

Clark scored eight goals and registered four assists in 50 combined MLS appearances for the Red Bulls, growing into a key player when healthy. He dressed for RB Leipzig on six occasions last season but did not appear off the bench or make his senior debut.

The 20-year-old made 11 appearances with the U.S. Under-20 men’s national team, helping Mikey Varas’ squad qualify for the 2023 FIFA U-20 World Cup and 2024 Summer Olympics. However, he was not part of the World Cup roster as the Americans suffered quarterfinal elimination at the hands of Uruguay.

Vendsyssel FF is currently in fifth place in the Danish second-tier table.


  1. Such a strange journey. As a teen doesn’t want sign with MNU as a homegrown because their academy was in a shambles and eventually shut down completely. Goes to Barca Academy, works out deal with Red Bulls after three years there. At the time rumor was there was a handshake deal that at 18 he’d move to Leipzig. Scores 3 times in first month in ‘21. 4g 1a in first 8 matches in ‘22. Has appendectomy. His next season and half 1g 3a.
    Pre-appendix 7g 1a (16 app)
    Post-Appendix 1g 3a (34 app)
    Now by most accounts headed home to Minnesota in Jan.

  2. They realized he wasn’t ready yet (I.e. they bought him too early). A couple of articles out there that this loan is just a stopgap until Minnesota United buys him back. He’s not in RB Leipzig’s plans.

    • That doesn’t particularly make sense either. He was in Red Bull system in NY it’s not like they didn’t know his levels. If they knew he wasn’t good enough why ever even bring him to Leipzig. Once there why put him on the bench. Why hold onto him thru the MLS window if he is just coming home in ‘24. I’m not saying he won’t end up in Minnesota next summer but there’s got be more there.

      • Maybe Minnesota needed to wait until January for roster mechanism reasons. This really stinks if they denied U20 WC release but maybe Varas just didn’t pick him.

      • it’s not complicated. his loan is a half season loan which precisely matches MLS’ calendar. they refuse to release him, my guess, so he can’t just come here now and play, as he missed the window. so he goes on an easy loan there, gets minutes, props up his sale price, and then MNU buys him in january next time a window opens.

        i also think one thing being missed is he may think he will step in and start — who knows, really — but that may be different when one signs as a kid. some of the HGP never or rarely see a MLS field before disappearing or off to USL.

        fwiw MLS is inconsistent about franchise area dibs on HGP.

  3. He has clearly been able to strike the ball well since at least his first game with RBNY. When I saw him regularly with the RB, he looked like an opportunistic scorer who had a dribbling move or two, but nothing to put fear into defenders. He also spent stretches of the games hiding rather than moving to be in good spots.

    I suspect it is the last trait that has kept him off the pitch for RB Leipzig. Playing in games and getting some harsh criticism from the local press (they will call him lazy). I think it is more likely that he simply has not yet learned how to get and stay open. If/when he improves his off-the-ball movement he has the potential to be a very good player.

    • This only makes sense if there is a good coaching staff in place who will help him improve.

      He will probably get PT but that’s not enough. He needs to make the most of his time there.

  4. Danish second tier side??? Wow, Caden has really hit a rough patch, and although he’s still really young this is not a good indicator, much like that of Justin Che smh

      • They realized he wasn’t ready yet (I.e. they bought him too early). A couple of articles out there that this loan is just a stopgap until Minnesota United buys him back. He’s not in RB Leipzig’s plans.

  5. surprised they need a soccer player because Vin Diesel just does F&F and Guardians movies lately.

    to me he left this a little late. but he drops down this far i am sure he will play, which is an upside. he wasn’t going to be in MLS this year unless he was released as the window closed a month ago. to me it had to be europe, it’s a better outcome than he just trains with MNU for half a year but can’t play games……

      • the belgian team might have been reticent to take someone on a short loan who literally wasn’t practicing and RBL is like we don’t want him training here, so it’s a middle ground. also would have the side benefit of being almost like a trial for MNU. short term he gets game fit for the belgians for part 1. long term MNU kicks the tires to make sure they want to pay for part 2.

  6. Man, I don’t want him to regress. He should have been sent to Belgium first division like Slonina. I know should have could of would’ve

    • here, i don’t believe in “regress,” i believe in “plateau.” he will get fitter and his touch back and game experience, that he wasn’t going to get sitting out. only after he’s playing a bit will it matter who he is playing for and the location becomes limiting. at which point you plateau because maybe VFF doesn’t have much to teach you. but let’s be real, he only briefly has been with RBL. most of the time he’s on loan from there and before it was almost like he never left RBNY. and i’d debate whether he was amazing there and had nothing to learn in MLS. his productivity was fairly modest.

      my personal experience in the short term many players who play will surpass those who sit. you have to get the “good” players who are sitting, moving, game fit, fairly sharp, to get back to the point where their quality and location matters and they can pass back up the successful drudges.


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