Preseason notebook 1
Robinson at Everton, Wooten sharp, McKennie plays defense, and more
In the first part of a regular feature, ASN will be monitoring the European preseason over the next month to track American players as they build a case to be in the starting lineup for the season openers.
BY Brian Sciaretta PostedTHE PRESEASON has begun for many European teams and with the United States not in the World Cup, there is no drawbacks for American players to be involved from the start.
July 05, 2018
July 05, 2018
As part of a regular ongoing feature, ASN will be brining regular updates from European preseason.
Here is the first edition of the notebook'
McKennie starts at central defense
Schalke had its first preseason friendly on Thursday and played to a 3-3 draw against England’s Southampton in China.
United States international Weston McKennie started and played the first half before exiting with the score 1-1. What was particularly interesting is that Schalke manager Domenico Tedesco played McKennie in central defense.
If this was done to help the American polish his defensive skills for a role in the midfield, it can be productive. If this was done with an eye towards a positional switch, it probably won’t bear much fruit. McKennie is a very good midfielder and his ceiling in central defense is much lower.
Boyd to remain at Darmstadt
American forward Terrence Boyd, 27, had his contract with Darmstadt expire last week but it appears as if the German-American will rejoin the club for the upcoming season as Kicker reported a new deal was done.
Boyd played in 24 games last season for Damrstadt but only nine were starts. In 890 league minutes he scored four goals.
Gyau gets the start
American winger Joe Gyau, 25, took a step up in the offseason after signing for MSV Duisburg in the 2.Bundesliga. He is coming off a successful season at Sonnenhof Großaspach in the 3.Liga.
On Tuesday, the Maryland native drew a penalty in a 2-1 friendly win against Royal Antwerp FC.
On Thursday, Gyau was a second half sub and scored the seventh goal of a 10-0 win over VfB Günnigfeld.
Williams returns to Huddersfield
Midfielder Danny Williams, 29, has been out of action for Huddersfield since March due to a fractured distal fibula.
But the American is back with Huddersfield to start the preseason as the club avoided relegation in April.
Robinson training with Everton first team
After a very successful loan last season at Bolton, United States international left back Antonee Robinson, 20, is playing with Everton’s first team to start the preseason
This is exciting news for the national team. Bolton wants Robinson back but Everton wants a closer look to see if he is ready for the Premier League. He might still go on loan again, but Robinson is pressing Everton hard. At this point last year, he seemed like a complete afterthought for Everton. But now the club is taking him seriously.
Wooten starting sharp
Last season was tough for Andrew Wooten – who missed almost the entire year (he played just 140 league minutes) due to injuries.
The German-born Wooten, 28, has now returned to start the preseason and he has been in form.
He has scored in the past three preseason friendlies against lower-level opposition. Two goals in a 6-0 win, three goals in a 9-0 win, and one goal in another 6-0 win.
At this rate, it looks like he might resume his role as a team starter.