Teen McKennie makes first Bundesliga start against Bayern

A little more than a year after leaving his home in Dallas, 19-year-old Weston McKennie made his first Bundesliga start for Schalke 04. It was against the biggest of all opponents, Bayern Munich, and he played 56 minutes in central midfield before going off for a second forward. Schalke, which trailed, 2-0, went on to lose the game, 3-0.

Schalke 04-Bayern Munich Highlights:

McKennie, a product of the FC Dallas academy, had a lot of ground to cover as Bayern constantly put Schalke under pressure. Both first-half goals followed mistakes by the Schalke defense -- a Robert Lewandowski penalty kick and James Rodriguez goal.

Probably the best part of McKennie's game was his crisp passing under pressure to find open teammates. Schalke coach Domenico Tedesco generally starts two central midfielders in a 5-4-1 or 5-2-3 formation. McKennie started alongside young Algerian Nabil Bentaleb.

Elsewhere ... McKennie is one of three 19-year-old Americans playing in Germany's top two divisions. Christian Pulisic is at Borussia Dortmund, which faces Hamburg on Wednesday.

Haji Wright is on loan from Schalke 04 to tiny second division club Sandhausen, which beat Union Berlin, 1-0, to temporarily move into first place. Wright came off the bench in the second half.

McKinze Gaines, also 19, is on loan to second division Darmstadt 98 from Wolfsburg but has yet to suit up in league play this season.

3 comments about "Teen McKennie makes first Bundesliga start against Bayern".
  1. Rusty Welch, September 20, 2017 at 10:22 a.m.

    Watched the game - granted, the first game I've seen Weston play, but very impressive. He covers a lot of ground, made good decisions, and had no problems handling the ball. I sincerely hope that should he continue playing well for Schalke, Arena will bring him in to the senior team quickly and see what he can do. We need a shot in the arm of enthusiasm, speed, and ball control! Would absolutely love to see him, Pulisic, and possibly Johnson / Acosta / Chandler anchoring our midfield for the foreseeable future!

  2. Fire Paul Gardner Now replied, September 20, 2017 at 12:01 p.m.

    Agree except that I have no desire to see Chandler for the USMNT.

  3. Bob Ashpole replied, September 21, 2017 at 11:22 a.m.

    Fire, I think he misspoke when he wrote Chandler, but I don't see a hint as to what he intended. There has been a lot of press speculation about Christian Roldan, but he only just earned his 1st cap.

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