Right winger Sal Zizzo
signed a three-year contract with German club Hannover, becoming the first member of the U.S. U-20 national team to sign a contract
with a European club since the end of the U-20 World Cup in Canada, where it fell in the quarterfinals.
Like long-time Hannover defender Steve
, Zizzo grew up in the San Diego, where he also starred at baseball. He spent two years at UCLA but chose to forego the 2007 MLS SuperDraft to hold out for his chances in Europe
after the U-20 World Cup.
Zizzo's parents are from Sicily, so he holds an Italian passport, making it easier for him to negotiate a contract in Europe.
Zizzo, who was excellent
in the wins over Poland and Brazil, is the third Bruin underclassman to sign with a German Bundesliga club in the last three years. Benny Feilhaber
with Hamburg after the 2005 U-20 World Cup, and Kamani Hill
joined Wolfsburg last winter.
Zizzo is highly regarded by Hannover, which has spent
approximately $7 million on transfers during the offseason.
Its big acquisition is German international Mike Hanke
from Wolfsburg. HANNOVER SIGNINGS Gaetan Krebs
(Racing Strasbourg/FRA) Sergio Pinto
(Alemannia Aachen) Thomas Kleine
(Greuther Fuerth) Timo Nagy
(Wacker Burghausen) Chavdar Yankov
(Slavia Sofia/BUL) Mike Hanke
(Wolfsburg) Benjamin Lauth
(Hamburg) Sal Zizzo