USMNT fans have another European club to cheer for, as Ricardo Pepi has signed for FC Augsburg in the Bundesliga for $20 million.
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Pepi, 18, has been a sensation over the last six months as the FC Dallas forward burst onto the scene during World Cup qualifying for the USMNT.
That form has seen him land a big move to the Bundesliga, as clubs across Europe were eager to snap up the young American forward. Pepi has signed a five-and-a-half-year contract at Augsburg, which has the option to extend it to the summer of 2027, as he will call Bavaria home for the foreseeable future.
Here’s what the rising star had to say as he completed his move to Germany, as he is able to train this week after completing all of his medicals.
Another USMNT youngster heading to Germany
“It was my dream to move to Europe after the last MLS season. I see FC Augsburg and the Bundesliga as the perfect environment to be able to collect a lot of match practice at the highest level as a young player,” Ricardo Pepi said. “It was impressive how much the people in charge at Augsburg tried to help me. So from the very first moment I had a really good feeling that Augsburg was exactly the right club for me. I’m looking forward to my new colleagues and would like to join the team as soon as possible and can hardly wait for it to start.”
Augsburg were delighted to seal the deal, as their sporting director Stefan Reuter explains they gave Pepi a clear plan for his development.
“We are delighted that Ricardo has decided to move to FCA despite the interest of numerous top international clubs. We were able to show him a clear sporting perspective for his further development, which convinced him,” Reuter said. “We are convinced that he will continue to develop in Augsburg and that we will all have a lot of fun together in the years to come.”
A good fit for the USMNT striker?
This seems like a very smart move for Ricardo Pepi.
He will play regularly at Augsburg and he has ignored the advances of some larger teams in Europe in order of securing more playing time. That is very smart.
Augsburg have a history of bringing through young players and the main thing Pepi needs is to be play regularly in a competitive league in Europe to improve and get to the next level. That is the most important thing here and whoever is advising the young Texas forward is doing a very good job.
He could make his debut as early as Saturday as Augsburg kick off the second half of the Bundesliga season against Hoffenheim.
Augsburg are the fourth-lowest goalscorers in the Bundesliga this season (Florian Niederlechner is their top scorer with three goals in 17 games) and sit just above relegation playoff spot. A few wins and they will be up in midtable as the Bavarian side are a solid midtable outfit in the German top-flight and have been ever-present since 2011. Yes, they are a low-scoring team which is a risk for a striker to join, but Pepi will be tasked with turning that around and he is a true poacher in the box.
Again, this is a very smart move by Pepi and his people and he will be Augsburg’s main man up top in the second half of this season and beyond.