Dual nationals: Bayern Munich's Malik Tillman commits to USA

Germany-raised midfielder Malik Tillman, whose father is USA-born, has begun the FIFA process to change his association to the USA.

The 19-year-old, who has made four Bundesliga appearances (one start), played for Germany's U-21s but was left off the U-21 European Championship squad. Tillman played for the U.S. U-15s under coach  Dave van den Bergh in 2016 at a tournament in Croatia, before moving up the ranks of Germany's youth national team program.

An offensive midfielder who's been compared to Paul Pogba, he was the leading scorer of the U-19 Bundesliga. He his first-team promotion and Bundesliga debut off the bench last December. He hasn't seen first-team action since January.

"Malik's decision disappoints and surprises us," Germany's U-21 coach Antonio di Salvo told kicker Magazine. "We promoted him as a younger player among U-21s, put a lot faith in him and gave match experience. We also had serious conversations with him about his prospects for the full national team."

Mallik's 23-year-old brother Timothy Tillman, who plays for Greuther Fürth, had also flirted with playing for the USA at the U-20 level while he was in Bayern's youth system.

9 comments about "Dual nationals: Bayern Munich's Malik Tillman commits to USA".
  1. R2 Dad, May 20, 2022 at 12:42 a.m.

    The highlight reel is impressive--is this guy going to just drop in our laps? He wears the 9 and 11, but he's really a 10. GGG is so wedded to the 4-3-3  Malik would need to be a false 9 or a middle distance-running 8. I can see him and Moussa splitting time. At 6'-2" he's a big unit in the attacking half--even the troglodytes in the Nats silo would approve.

  2. Bob Ashpole replied, May 21, 2022 at 8:17 a.m.

    Think Clint Dempsey. This guy has the potential to play anywhere up front. Just because he has ball skills, USSF mentality wants to call him a midfielder. Would you confine Dempsey to a role player 10 role? No one would dream of it.

    Once again I have to say that we need coaches that know what to do with skilled players.

  3. Greedy Striker, May 20, 2022 at 10:31 a.m.

    All the talent in the world, but does it not say a lot about the kid that he and bro are already switching allegiances instead of fighting for their places with Germany? Surely there are better prospects out there with a 100% commitment to the Stars and Stripes and not this "wishy washy change countries on a whim if I don't get my way" approach to the international decision. Maybe I'm just old, but I thought the days of Thomas Dooley, David Regis, Julian Green, Jermain Jones, etc we're behind us in US men's soccer! There are soooo many true homegrown players who never get a shot!

  4. R2 Dad replied, May 20, 2022 at 11:19 a.m.

    I agree, I think you're just old. Playing international soccer is a complicated decision. Players get locked into a system based on many factors other than just, Where Were You Born? I, too, wish this was more straight-forward. Maybe in the future FIFA will find a way to simplify this for players but I doubt it.

  5. beautiful game replied, May 20, 2022 at 3:50 p.m.

    Malik made a personal choice. There is no need to rationalize or question his decision.

  6. George Pelka, May 20, 2022 at 1:38 p.m.

    Congratulations, let´s hope this is going to work for you and national team as well.

  7. Mark Buckley, May 20, 2022 at 1:44 p.m.

    Seems like you have something against German players; every year Mexican and American players are deciding between the USA and Mexico and I don't see Mexico encouraging players to play for the USA because they don't want "wishy washy" dual nationals on Mexico's national team. I really never noticed a huge influx of German players. You named 4 players in the last 32 years, if we go back to the 1990 World Cup. Just wondering, enjoy your soccer!  

  8. Greedy Striker replied, May 21, 2022 at 11:32 a.m.

    Plenty of othe examples exist and of course I mentioned the Germans because it is where this kid's decision is from!!!! Btw, Regis was from France! There's lots of nuance to these decisions but it speaks to a player's mentality when they choose right before a World Cup. He's becoming "American" just to play in Qatar because the US qualified (probably payments made under table) and has not the quality or apparently a future with Germany. Meanwhile, we had kids who've been working in the player pools at every level just to get invited to a US camp for even just a training session. 

  9. Bob Ashpole replied, May 21, 2022 at 2:14 p.m.

    Greedy, you are going to upset a lot of us older people if you continue dissing Dooley.

    So you are all for equal opportunity based on merit as long as the person isn't the child of a US servicemenber or Foreign Service officer born overseas, is an immigrant, has a parent or grandparent who was an immigrant, or was born in Hawaii since that state is in Asia. Sounds like the pigs in Animal Farm (some animals are more equal than others).

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