Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
Union loans teen Pfeffer to Hoffenheim
by Paul Kennedy, December 5th, 2012 12:51AM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

MOST READ
TAGS:  americans abroad, philadelphia union

MOST COMMENTED

[AMERICANS ABROAD]American teenager Zach Pfeffer is leaving the Philadelphia Union to join German club Hoffenheim on a one-year loan. The deal comes as no surprise. He had trained with the Bundesliga club in 2010 but could not sign since FIFA rules prevent players from signing with a foreign club before they are 18. Pfeffer's loan deal with Hoffenheim starts Jan. 7 -- the day after his 18th birthday.

Pfeffer signed the Union as its first homegrown signing in December 2010 and made his MLS debut in September 2011 at the age of 16. He only played four first-team games in two MLS seasons.

Two other Americans, Joe Gyau and Charles Renken, joined Hoffenheim after they turned 18. Gyau and Renken, who had been "parked" at the Vancouver Whitecaps residency academy after leaving the U.S. U-17 residency program, are no longer at Hoffenheim. Renken was recently waived by the Portland Timbers. Gyau is loan to Bundesliga 2 club St. Pauli.

Like Renken and Gyau, Pfeffer had been part of the U.S. U-17 residency program but left before representing the USA at a world championship. Pfeffer has been playing for the U.S. U-18 national team

Pfeffer joins fellow Pennsylvanian Russell Canouse at Hoffenheim. The 17-year-old Canouse, who hails from Lancaster and played on the New York Red Bulls academy team, signed a three-year contract with Hoffenheim in January 2012. Canouse, who captained Hoffenheim's U-17s, was able to get around the FIFA transfer restrictions for youth players because his father had moved to Germany for work.

German-Americans Danny Williamsand Fabian Johnson play for Hoffenheim, though neither began their pro careers at the club.

Backed by software billionaire Dietmar Hopp, Hoffenheim went from the fifth level of German soccer to the Bundesliga in 2008 -- a span of eight years.

With such players as former Saint Louis University star Vedad Ibisevic and Demba Ba, now at Newcastle, Hoffenheim was the "Herbstmeister" (fall champion) in 2008. It finished seventh in 2008-09 and 11th each of the last three years.

Hoffenheim is suffering through its worst season since its climb to the top. It is in 16th place in the 18-team Bundesliga after 15 games.



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
What They're Saying: Jurgen Klinsmann    
"Every day you learn. You learn about every individual, about your group, about the chemistry, about ...
MLS Week 16: Results & standings    
Chad Barrett scored in the 90th minute to give the San Jose Earthquakes a 1-1 tie ...
USA-Colombia Copa Centenario Player Ratings    
The USA finished the Copa America Centenario the same way it had started the tournament: shut ...
Euro 2016: Griezmann rescues France with pair of goals    
Antoine Griezmann scored two goals four minutes apart to lead host France to a 2-1 win ...
What They're Saying: Sunil Gulati    
"Our base-line [for average attendance] was 30,000; 35,000 would've been great, and 40,000 beyond our wildest ...
What They're Saying: Investment banker Keith Harris    
"It was a shock result. There are four players that we can reflect on and the ...
What They're Saying: Megan Rapinoe    
"Gay bars are so important for me and my community. That could have been me. That ...
What They're Saying: Gudmundur Benediktsson    
"It's been quite strange and actually hectic because the phone hasn't stopped ringing. But I'm really ...
MLS: Top fives in Fan XI voting remain steady    
The MLS All-Star Game will be played July 28 in San Jose and every few days ...
MLS Countdown: Rivals wrap up season series early    
The MLS campaign has yet to reach its midpoint yet already teams are facing each other ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives