One of the worst kept secrets in American soccer is now official: Zack Steffen has signed for Manchester City.
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The Columbus Crew SC and U.S. men’s national team goalkeeper will officially join the reigning Premier League champions on July 9, 2019 at the start of the secondary transfer window in Major League Soccer.
In a statement released by Columbus, they say the transfer fee is “the largest in club history and most ever received by an MLS club for a goalkeeper in the League’s 23-year history.”
It is believed Steffen will cost City around $10 million.
Steffen, 23, has become a regular for the USMNT over the past 12 months and has made six appearances for the Stars and Stripes which included a superb display against 2018 World Cup winners France in a 1-1 friendly draw in Lyon back in June
Speaking about his upcoming move to the Premier League, Steffen is delighted to get the opportunity and he hopes to continue progressing with Columbus over the next seven months.
“Any success that I have had as a goalkeeper in MLS with Crew SC is a testament to those around me who have pushed me – teammates, coaches, staff, family, friends and supporters,” Steffen said. “Today’s announcement regarding next summer is a special moment for me and I look forward to finishing my time with this Club on a strong note. I am eager to continue to put in the work to improve and be the best teammate I can.”
Steffen’s development has been clear for all to see over the past 18 months, as he has flourished in Columbus under Gregg Berhalter. Brought in from German side SC Freiburg in 2016, the imposing goalkeeper has jumped to the top of the pack and ahead of Brad Guzan and Ethan Horvath as the USMNT’s top goalkeeper. Steffen was named the 2018 MLS Goalkeeper of the year and was also an MLS All-Star in 2018.
It is likely the former University of Maryland goalkeeper will find minutes hard to come by at City for the foreseeable as current first-choice goalkeeper Ederson is just 25 years old, but Steffen’s move to the PL means he will be training with one of the top clubs in the world and that can only be a good thing for the USMNT moving forward.
More than likely Steffen will spend time out on loan at either Girona or others clubs with a close connection to the City Football Group (CFG) in the next few years, and this signing goes along with City’s mantra of trying to sign up the best young talent across the globe then either sell them on or loan them out for a sizeable fee.
Following in the footsteps of Brad Friedel, Kasey Keller, Tim Howard and Brad Guzan before him, Steffen is the latest American to get his shot in the Premier League.
When preseason rolls around in 2019 we will be seeing Steffen in a Man City jersey.