Ones to Watch | Number 6: Caden Clark; the next budding American talent

player to watch |  #6: Caden Clark

In the world of football filled with countless stars today, many of us are curious about who is waiting in the wings. This search for this wonder child follows; The young man who has the power to make us stand up and marvel at how they have mastered their craft despite their young age is always on the minds of millions of fans around the world.

With this in mind, we are at 101 great goals Another weekly series will offer you a look at players from all over the world who are 21 or younger. You will undoubtedly hear about some of them, while we hope to introduce you to some new names to pique your curiosity every now and then.

Name: Caden Clark

age: 18 years old

location: attacking midfield

place of birthCity, Minnesota, USA

Citizenship: United State

National team matches: 0 (maximum at youth level up to U20 incl.)

current club: NY Red Bulls (on loan from RB Leipzig).

The current market value (per Transfer Market): 3.5 million euros

Potential suitor (applicants): Unavailable

The narrative surrounding the MLS in the United States has become a quantitative shift regarding its place in world football in the past few years. One that many felt was always coming due to the pedigree the country has historically had in terms of its ability to produce top-level athletes across a wide range of sports.

Basketball, baseball, and American football have long been associated as the major sporting triangle, and the United States has been associated with soccer for much longer than many know or understand, but the internal dynamics needed for youth development to truly thrive in the country have nothing but close association with soccer. It recently allowed identification and promotion of talent to really take off.

Since 2020, at least a dozen homegrown players have left MLS clubs’ development centers in Europe. The likes of Brendan Aaronson and Ricardo Pepe are two of the most recognizable names people will refer to, with lesser known but talented individuals like Gianluca Bosio and Tanner Tessman as well. Another young talent that not many in Europe have heard of is Caden Clark.

Born in Minnesota, a state known for the sporting dynamism of producing ice hockey players but also for the long-standing relationships with both Germany and Scandinavia in general that have made football quietly popular, Clark is one of the brightest talents to emerge from the MLS youth ranks to date.

Currently on loan to the New York Red Bulls, Rise to MLS stardom in 2020 His record of transferring to German rookie RB Leipzig after coming onto the scene by scoring two goals in his first two NYRB appearances when he was just 17-years-old While displaying high technical proficiency, his potential was undeniable but the need for refinement was just as evident. .

It makes sense to note that Clark has been on the right track all along, however, having spent three years at the Barcelona Residency Academy based in Arizona before making a breakthrough with the NYRB. For Leipzig to sign with him, a club with a track record of buying young talent and further developing them, his return to MLS should not be seen as a criticism of his current ability.

It was Recently ranked 24th in the latest NxGN50 He crosses over to Goal for 2022 for good reason and has already positioned himself on US manager Greg Berhalter’s radar screen despite the cadre of young players currently growing across the domestic and European scene. And despite his return home, the value of the field minutes for the 18-year-old is hard to question as he is almost impossible to reach in Saxony at the moment.

His tactical prowess is a real plus point for what he can bring to the table given his ability to pounce behind a striker or on one side as a broad option, but it’s his increasing efficiency in front of goal that makes him tall. range threat.

player to watch |  #6: Caden Clark

HARRISON, NJ – SEPTEMBER 22: James Sands #16 of NYC took a heavy blow from Caden Clark #37 of the New York Red Bulls in the second half of the New York Derby at Red Bull Arena on September 22, 2021 in Harrison, New Jersey. (Photo by Ira L. Black – Corbis / Getty Images)

Furthermore, perhaps the most distinguishing characteristic of Clarke despite being a striker is his ability to press but also restore possession in interference; Both traits fit a regime like that of Leipzig under current president Domenico Tedesco, as well as former defendants Jesse Marsh and Julian Nagelsmann.

His profile and package fit perfectly into a high-octane attacking system where pressure is the primary competence on the defensive side of the ball, so it’s no wonder Leipzig wanted to capitalize on a player in their global pipeline. A move that was similar to what they did when they brought Tyler Adams across the pond.

Unlike some of the other players we’ve identified in recent weeks, Caden Clark appears to be more of a player for the future than someone who will be rocking the earth in the near future. But when it comes to the future, expect Clark to be at the forefront of US soccer.

This article has been edited by
Ben Browning.