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- DOB March 8, 1989
- Age 24
- Place of birth Karlsruhe, Germany
- POSITION Defender/Midfielder
- HEIGHT 5'11"
- WEIGHT 175
- U.S. CAPS 11
- CLUB Hoffenheim
- ASN 100 Rank 18
- Previous ASN 100 Rank 11
- ASN QUESTIONNAIRE Read now
Danny Williams is one of a handful of German-born-bred-and-schooled Americans that Jurgen Klinsmann has brought into the U.S. national team fold since taking over in the summer of 2011. The fiercely competitive Williams is a versatile midfielder who's most comfortable in the center of the field but can do the job as a pinched-in wide player too.
The son of a German mother and an American father who was stationed in Germany with the U.S. military, Williams began his career at the youth level with Karlsruher SC before signing his first professional contract with SC Freiburg in 2008. He made his first-team debut with Freiburg in January 2010. Williams then signed a three-year deal with Hoffenheim in August 2011, and he made 24 appearances in his first year with the club.
"For 22 years the only thing I knew was Germany," Williams told Yanks-Abroad.com. "When I was young I was playing for Germany's U-15 team, I was focused on playing for Germany. I wasn't that familiar with U.S. soccer at the time."
But shortly after becoming coach, Klinsmann came calling. Williams accepted Klinsmann’s invitation and—after getting his U.S. passport in September—earned his first cap with the U.S. national team against Honduras in October 2011. "For me it's a dream to play for the United States," Williams said before his debut. "I haven't had time to enjoy it because everything has happened so quickly. I will realize it all soon."
Williams hasn't yet found his position with the U.S. national team but he is still very much a part of the squad. Only 23 and already a regular Bundesliga starter, the smart money is on Williams being an ever-present cog in the ever-evolving U.S. national team setup.—RYAN O'HANLON
Klinsmann on Williams:
"He's a player with a huge upside in the next couple of years.” (October 2011)
Noteworthy ReadsGerman Strategy: Danny Williams Latest in Line of Dual-citizenship U.S. Players (Sporting News)
Newest MNT Member Proud to Get the Call: Danny Williams Q & A (U.S. Soccer)
Williams’ American Journey (Yanks Abroad)