With Jesse Marsch taking the reigns at Leeds United and the on-and-off discussions with FC Salzburg about the transfer of Brenden Aaronson, it got me thinking about the possibility of a USMNT team in the Premier League. Germany does this with Bayern Munich, Portugal does it with Sporting, Spain did it with Barca in 2010, and there have been many other examples of this over the years. All of these have been players from one team in their domestic league and playing for their national team. But what if Leeds decided to load up on USMNT players?
First of all, Leeds is an organization in place to make money. How their board of directors wants to allocate their funds to turn a profit is something they control and not me. But there are some serious economic advantages of a "Leeds United States" team and I can’t help but think this could be the beginning of something unique and special and profitable. With an "American" team in the PL, a very large fan base is already in tact and could create a TV market of 330 million. I doubt there would be a lot of Americans in the stands every week to see the Yanks play home matches at Elland Road but the TV market could be huge.
No, I don’t think they would challenge for the league title. Even if every one of the current group of USMNT players went to Leeds to play together do I think they would be able to hang with Liverpool, Man City and the rest of the Big Six. But I do think they could hang around with the likes of Wolverhampton, Newcastle and the others who finish middle of the table every year if they were to add enough good talent.
Obviously, we will start with Aaronson, but we will need a few more players to fill out a roster and there are a number who have unsettled contracts like John Brooks. Players, like Matthew Hoppe, who desperately need a move to find playing time could fit in here. Cameron Carter-Vickers has been rumored to have a lot of PL interest and why not this team? This could also be a good holding place for Chris Richards and Zach Steffen as their teams don’t have a current place for them. It could also be a great recruiting tool for the USMNT as they try to recruit the likes of Folarin Balogun and Alex Mighten, but that might be outside of the scope of Leeds’ interest.
Best of all, Leeds would control the purse strings and therefore have final say on who gets on the roster. The likes of Paul Arriola, Gyasi Zardes and Kellen Acosta would never be a concern. I wouldn’t expect Christian Pulisic, Gio Reyna or Sergino Dest to land on this roster unless Leeds finds itself among the "Big Seven" of the PL.
I know there are a lot of moving pieces in just a club team and then to add the politics of a national team only muddies the water, but this is just something that made me think "Just maybe…".