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USMNT Weekly Youth Update: Jonathan Amon hitting his form

The 19-year-old winger had a big week

It’s been an up-and-down week with a few excellent performances and a few disappointing ones as well. I will continue my ranking system to denote whether I believe these players are ready for a callup (1-nowhere near ready, 5-absolutely call them up) next month. Here’s what happened this week:


Jonathan Amon - Winger, FC Nordsjaelland

Amon had a huge week coming off his return from injury last week. On Thursday, Amon came off the bench in the 58th minute of Nordsjaelland’s second leg Europa League playoff. With Nordsjaelland down 3-1 in the game and 5-2 on aggregate, Amon was in the right place at the right time to pounce on a rebound and score his first goal of 2017/2018. However, he wasn’t able to help them get the miracle comeback they required. So Nordsjaelland is now eliminated from European competition. Then on Sunday, Amon came off the bench with Nordsjaelland up 1-0 at halftime and was a menace. In the 59th minute, Amon should have had his first assist of the season when he sent teammate Mohammed Kudus clean in on goal. Kudus was denied a goal, but Amon wouldn’t be deterred. In stoppage time, Amon scored a spectacular goal off a counter where he used his pace to blow past the defender and race in on goal.

This was his first league goal of the season. I can’t wait to see him on the field for the USMNT. 5

Seyi Adekoya - Striker/Winger, Vendsyssel FF

Denmark has been a highlight reel in recent weeks for young Americans. Adekoya has been getting spot minutes to start the season after he moved on from the Seattle Sounders. On Friday, Adekoya subbed on in the 71st minute. Vendsyssel would surrender two goals in 13 minutes to go down 2-0. Adekoya was able to find a pocket of space to slot home a goal in stoppage time to pull one back.

Vendsyssel was unable to complete the comeback, but it was a nice moment for the 22-year-old. 2


Gio Reyna - Attacking Midfielder, Borussia Dortmund

Reyna is reportedly going to sign with Borussia Dortmund on his 16th birthday this November. The son of one of the all-time USMNT greats will follow Christian Pulisic to one of the biggest clubs in Germany. Reyna is one of the brightest talents in his age range with smooth skills on the ball. Let’s hope he can replicate Pulisic’s success. 1

Kevin Lankford - Winger, FC Heidenheim

Lankford has had a mixed start to the 2. Bundesliga season overall. He came off the bench in the season opener and started the following week before being subbed off in the 61st minute. However, he made an impact on Sunday. The 19-year-old came off the bench in the German Cup in the 70th minute and scored his first professional goal in stoppage time. Heidenheim would move on in the competition with a 5-2 victory. Lankford is a player to watch that could provide some much needed depth on the wing in the next cycle. 3


Marlon Fossey - Right Back, Fulham FC

Fossey’s rotten luck continues. He had surgery on his left knee that will keep him out for an extended period of time. Fossey was impressing in preseason and appeared in line to potentially get some opportunities with the first team this season, but that will all have to wait. Hopefully he can recover fully.

Will Vint - Central Midfielder, ?

Vint will be leaving the Manchester United Academy amid visa issues, the club announced this week. The 16-year-old was featuring for Manchester United’s U-18 team and was well liked by the club, but he will return stateside and look to join an MLS academy. This is a disappointing turn of events in his journey, because he was impressing with the Premier League giants. At some point, it would be nice if the federation could strike a deal with UEFA so our players could move there at the age of 16 like the players with European passports can do. It’s a distinct disadvantage many of our players have. 1

Folarin Balogun - Striker, Arsenal

Balogun is receiving a call-up to the USMNT U-18 camp in the Czech Republic this week. The 17-year-old striker is currently playing for Arsenal’s U-18 team and scored a brace in their season opener. Balogun is provisionally cap-tied to England following his play for their U-17 team in the U-17 European Championship earlier this year. Therefore, he would be required to file a permanent one-time switch to be able to represent the United States. It’s good to see US Soccer going after a player of this caliber. 1


Timothy Weah - Striker/Winger, Paris St. Germain

Weah started and played the first half at striker on Saturday for PSG. Weah created a nice chance for Angel Di Maria early on with a nutmegged pass following a nice run into the box, but he was pretty quiet after that. Weah only had nine touches in the half as the midfield struggled to find him and he struggled to come back to help generate the attack. With PSG down 1-0, Weah was taken off for Kylian Mbappe. Mbappe looked like he hadn’t missed a step from his incredible World Cup and sparked PSG to the comeback 3-1 win. For Weah, it was a bit of an individual struggle but a great learning experience. With Edinson Cavani still on the shelf, Weah may continue to see some looks in the coming weeks. 5


Andrija Novakovich - Striker, Reading FC (On Loan at Fortuna Sittard)

Novakovich has started each of Sittard’s first two matches of the season after moving up to the top division in Holland. The 21-year-old went the distance on Saturday against defending Eredivisie champions PSV Eindhoven. In the 8th minute, Novakovich played his teammate in on goal but the keeper denied him what would have been a beautiful assist. El Tri winger Chucky Lozano opened the scoring for PSV, but Fortuna Sittard played them very tough. In the 61st minute, Novakovich opened his account with a very good goal to level the score. He chested the ball down while using his strength to hold off two defenders as he turned and slotted the ball past the keeper.

PSV was able to find a winner in stoppage time, but it was an encouraging performance from Novakovich. Let’s hope he keeps it up. 4

United States

Tyler Adams - Central Midfielder, New York Red Bulls

Adams had a fantastic performance on Saturday for New York. In the 5th minute, Adams received the ball off a throw-in and delivered a gorgeous over-the-top pass that sprung Bradley Wright-Phillips into space that would lead to the opening goal.

In the 90th minute, with New York down 2-1, Adams delivered a beautiful ball on a free kick that was headed home to steal a point.

Overall he was 44/59 passing with three chances created, an assist, three tackles and three interceptions. Adams has had a very nice season in the heart of the New York Midfield. He now has a goal and four assists in 2,319 minutes this year and was an alternate MLS All-Star. I’d be very surprised if he isn’t in the lineup against Brazil and Mexico. 5

As always, head to the comment section to let me know if there’s anything major I overlooked or if there is anyone you’d like to hear about.