[USA SPOTLIGHT] The USA has scored just 0.78 goals per game and was shut out four times in nine matches under Coach Jurgen Klinsmann, who for Wednesday’s friendly against Italy has called in German product Terrence Boyd -- a 21-year-old striker who is the leading scorer on Borussia Dortmund's reserve team.
Boyd was born in Bremen to a German mother and an American serviceman, who left the family and returned to the United States. Boyd moved from his hometown club Bremerhaven in 2009 for Hertha BSC, where his play in the youth and reserve team ranks caught the attention of then U.S. U-20 coach Thomas Rongen. In May 2011, Boyd joined the U-20s for two games in France under Rongen’s successor, Tab Ramos.
Boyd moved to German champion Borussia Dortmund last summer and has yet to crack the lineup of the first team, which leads the standings, but he’s a top player on Borussia Dortmund II, a U-23 squad that plays in the fourth division. (Only clubs with top tier teams are restricted to U-23s. They may field three over-age players.) Boyd has also begun training with the first team twice a week and made the bench for one game.
In December, Boyd joined the U.S. U-23 camp in Germany and scored in scrimmages against German clubs VfL Bochum and Bayer Leverkusen.
One of five German products called up by Klinsmann for the Italy game -- Jermaine Jones and Timothy Chandler have has since been dropped because of injuries -- Boyd was originally scheduled to join the U-23 squad that is preparing for the Olympic qualifiers. Instead, he’s off to Italy with because Klinsmann wants a closer look at the youngster who has shown a knack for hitting the net in the Regionalliga West, of which Boyd is the fifth leading scorer with 11 goals in 18 games.
Boyd’s main objective is to make the 18-man roster for the Italy game.
“I just want to give everything to hopefully make it onto the team,” Boyd told the New York Times. “Hopefully I can make it onto the bench. [Klinsmann] invited me because he said he wants to see me practice. I just have to give everything and we’ll see. It will be a big match.”
Whether he sees time against the Italians or not, Boyd is likely to be in Coach Caleb Porter’s U-23 roster for Olympic qualifying in March.
Boyd’s Broussia Dortmund II coach is David Wagner, a German product of American heritage who played eight times for the USA in 1996-98, including four appearances in World Cup qualifying.
“This is a great story for him and for us,” Wagner said of Boyd’s call-up by Klinsmann to Kicker. “He has impressed with consistently good performances and a great attitude.”