Josh Sargent shows off all his remarkable array of skills

Josh Sargent did it again, scoring his second goal in three Bundesliga games in Werder Bremen's 3-2 loss at RB Leipzig to close out the autumn campaign.

The 18-year-old forward has scored two goals in 45 minutes off the bench. On the first goal, in a 3-1 win over Fortuna Duesseldorf, Sargent happened to be in the right place at the right time to head a ball into an empty net from a yard out.

Sargent is 6-foot-1, but you don't notice anything special about his size or speed or other physical tools. Like he did when he scored four goals for the USA at both the 2017 Under-17 and Under-20 World Cups, Saturday's goal showcased Sargent's remarkable array of skills for a young American:

-- his hold-up play under pressure;
-- his ability to play in 360 degrees;
-- his anticipation in open spaces; and
-- his finishing with either foot.

With his back to goal and a defender on him, Sargent took a long ball down with his chest, took one touch to move away from his marker and play it with his left foot off to Max Kruse, who was open on the left wing.

Kruse played the ball into space over the top of the Leipzig defense to Japanese forward Yuya Osako, but Sargent continued to follow the play, looping around Kruse and cutting in from the left wing into open space.

Osako did a great job to pull away from two defenders and slip the ball into space, where the charging Sargent awaited the pass, staying onside.

With a clear shot on goal, Sargent fired first time with his left foot off the near post and into the goal.

Dec. 22 in Leipzig
RB Leipzig 3 Werder Bremen 2. Goals: Klostermann 22, Werner 44, Nruma 87; Kruse 67, Sargent 77.
RB Leipzig -- Gulacsi; Klostermann, Konate, Orban (Bruma 81), Halstenberg; Sabitzer, Kampl (Upamecano 58), Demme, Laimer; Poulsen, Werner (Cunha 90+2)
Werder Bremen -- Pavlenka; Gebre Selassie, Langkamp, Veljkovic, Augustinsson; Moehwald, M.Eggestein, Klaassen (Pizarro 86) -- Eggestein (Sargent 66), Kruse, Rashica (Osako 58).
4 comments about "Josh Sargent shows off all his remarkable array of skills".
  1. Wooden Ships, December 23, 2018 at 11:10 a.m.

    He’s quality. Maybe we won’t hear as much from Meola and other union worker types that have said young guys have to pay their dues. Remember the establishment stating CP was to young as well and eventually JK acquised. It’s about results and realized abilities. Already, Josh is the most complete forward this country has produced. We’ve had comparable and equally talented scorers, so he’s not a complete anomaly, but he had access. We should have 20 quality forwards-strikers to choose from every year, along with playing mids with vision, touch and instinct. What a condemnation of modern soccer in the states. I’m a St. Louis guy and loving every bit of this. 

  2. Bob Ashpole replied, December 23, 2018 at 12:41 p.m.

    A lot of history St. Louis has.

    WS, I agree with you, but he is young and still developing.

    Our coaching needs to do a better job of knowing how to get the best out of players with great skills and tactics.

    Case in point, I was never impressed with Nagbe's play with the MNT, but then recently I watched him play with his club team. I have now concluded that Nagbe's poor showing with the MNT team is a coaching problem, not a player problem. Nagbe is a fish out of water with the MNT.

    I really, really think the current USSF conventional wisdom on team tactics is deeply flawed. They use some of the Dutch Style principles of play (like make the field big while in possession) but they leave out others (staying compact with only 15 yards or less between lines.) While some individuals are better than others, as a team we too often have poor positioning off the ball, which is why I think Nagbe ends up holding the ball too long with the MNT.

  3. Wooden Ships replied, December 25, 2018 at 8:31 p.m.

    Good points Bob. I too like Nagbe, but he’s not a finisher. Our guys have got to want to score, it doesn’t appear to be high on his list though. On Josh, sure he’s young and developing, but he’s more then ready to be our number 9. There’s no one close. 

  4. R2 Dad, December 26, 2018 at 1:43 p.m.

    To have scored two goals already is remarkable--Bremen is not going to have a ton of possession in their attacking 3rd so chances will be fewer and finishing those chances is crucial. Would love to see his club push for an Europa spot. Hopefully the Red Baron can soak up some of that Pizzarro magic. 
    100% concurr with BA on Nagbe.
    Curious what you folks think about where best to play Sargent and Pulisic together, and who in midfield is best to support. If our forwards can't get service, they won't be of much use.

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