Wednesday, November 23, 2016

German-American/American-German Players Greatest All-Time Team

Jermaine Jones vs Germany at the 2014 WC Finals

Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

This is my selection of a 23 member all-time team for German American/American German players.  The number 23 was chosen because it is the official squad size for the World Cup Finals.

The influx of German-born American soccer players, mainly children of US servicemen stationed in Germany, contributed to the successes of US Soccer.  Meanwhile, Jimmy Hartwig and Erwin Kostedde broke the racial barrier for Black Germans. I thought this group deserved a mention in the history of the game.  

My focus was going to be about players who are children of American servicemen in Germany(or dual citizenship), but I could not find enough players for a 23 member team.  I also did not want an all-time team of German Americans.  It is estimated that 1/3 of Americans has German ancestry.  There would have been too many players eligible.  Instead, I included German immigrants or first generation American players to the United States. Each American-born player must have at least a German parent who is a German citizen and each German player must have at least an American parent.  The players do not necessary have to be an American citizen, but the player must be eligible to play for either country.  I do not think Felix Magath was ever an American citizen. 
Jurgen Klinsmann vs Thomas Dooley
Please see also:
USA All-Time Team
African-American Players
Hispanic/Latino American Players
German Turks 
East German Players After 1990 
USA 2010

GK: Juergen Sommer (USA)
After being named Collegiate Goalkeeper of the Year in 1990, Sommer left Indiana to sign with Luton Town in 1991. Sommer played for the next seven years in England for Queens Park Rangers, Luton Town and Torquay. In 1998 he made the jump back home to sign with the Columbus Crew. Sommer became the Crew starter over the next two seasons, and after a pair of major knee injuries, he signed with the New England Revolution. he was only capped 10 times due to fierce competition with Kasey Keller, Brad Friedel and Tony Meola during his prime.  He went to USA 1994 and France 1998.

GK: Marcus Hahnemann (USA)
He played for the Seattle Sounders between 1994 and 1996. Between 1997 and 1999 he turned out for the Colorado Rapids, signing with English club Fulham in 1999. Unable to become the first-choice goalkeeper at Fulham, he enjoyed loan spells with Rochdale and Reading, before signing permanently with Reading in 2002. In 2009, he transferred to Wolverhampton Wanderers. He has won nine caps for the United States, featuring as back-up for Kasey Keller and Tim Howard in two World Cups. 

GK: David Yelldell (USA)
He was the son of American serviceman in Germany.  He played with Stuttgart Kicker, Blackburn Rover, Bayer Leverkusen, TuS Koblenz, MSV Duisburg and now with  SG Sonnenhof Großaspach.  In 2011, he was capped once by the USA.

RB: Timmy Chandler (USA)
He was the son of American serviceman in Germany. Chandler began his career with Eintracht Frankfurt II before transferring to 1. FC Nürnberg II in the summer of 2010. He made his debut for the first team of 1. FC Nürnberg on January 15, 2011.  In 2014, he moved back to Eintracht Frankfurt.  He received his first US cap in 2011.  He was a member of the US World Cup team in 2014.

RB: Jeremy Toljan (Germany)
At the time of writing, Toljan has only played for TSG 1899 Hoffenheim in Germany.  He is a German youth international and currently active for the national U-21 side. He is also eligible to play for both the United States and Croatia. He was part of the squad for the 2016 Summer Olympics, where Germany won the silver medal.
Jeremy Toljan 

CB: Mike Windischmann (USA)
Although born in Germany, Windischmann's family moved to the United States when he was an infant.  He played college soccer with Adelphi University.  His career was between the end of NASL and the beginning of MLS.  He played for the Brooklyn Italians of New York City's Cosmopolitan League, Los Angeles Lazers of MISL, and the Albany Capitals of the American Soccer League for another single season. Earned over 50 caps.  He was the 1989 U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year. He was also named as the captain for the USA team at the 1990 FIFA World Cup. 
Mike Windischmann 

CB: John Brooks (USA)
Brooks is the son of American serviceman serving in Germany.  He started his career with Hertha Berlin. At the time of writing, he has only played for them.  Since 2013, he has represented for the USA.  He scored the winning goal against Ghana at Brazil 2014.

CB/DM: Thomas Dooley (USA)
Dooley was the son of a US serviceman stationed in Germay.  He won the Bundesliga with Kaiserslautern in 1990-1991 and then the UEFA Cup with Schalke 04 in 1996-1997.  Capped 81 times.  He was a key player as the United States reached the 2nd round at the 1994 WC Finals and was the captain at the WC 1998.  He was the U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year in 1993.

CB: Alfredo Morales (USA)
Born to a naturalized Peruvian-born American father and a German mother, Morales has represented the United States internationally at the youth and senior levels.  He started his career with Hertha Berlin.  At this moment, he played for FC Ingolstadt.

CB: Werner Roth (USA) 
Roth was born in Yugoslavia. He moved to the US at the age of 8 from Germany.  He started his career with NY German-Hungarians.  In 1972, he joined NY Cosmos, where he would play with Pele and Franz Beckenbauer.  He was a star for the US national team from 1972 to 1975.  Roth was a member of the National Soccer Hall of Fame in the US.  He also played German soccer team captain Baumann in the 1981 movie Victory (titled Escape to Victory in Europe.

DF: Herman Rapp (USA)
Rapp was born in Stuttgart, Germany. His dates of birth and death are unknown. In 1928, Rapp is listed with F.C. Schwaben of the International Soccer Football League of Chicago. He was then listed with the Philadelphia German-Americans of the American Soccer League during the World Cup.  In 1934, Rapp was called into the U.S. team for the 1934 FIFA World Cup. However, he did not enter the lone U.S game of the tournament, a 7-1 loss to eventual champion Italy

LWB/LW: Fabian Johnson (USA)
Johnson was born in Germany. He is the son of an African-American serviceman.  He began his career with 1860 Munich.  He also played for VfL Wolfsburg and Hoffenheim.  At the time of writing, he is playing for Borussia Mönchengladbach.  Capped by Germany at youth level, he played for USA at the senior level.  He went too Brazil 2014.
Fabian Johnson vs Germany

DM: Jimmy Hartwig (Germany)
He played for Kickers Offenbach, TSV 1860 München, Hamburger SV, 1. FC Köln and FC Homburg of the Bundesliga and for Austria Salzburg of Austria. Hartwig won the European Cup in 1983 with Hamburger SV, and was three times German league champion in 1979, 1982 und 1983. The son of an African-American soldier and a German mother,  Hartwig was the second non-white player capped for Germany(after Erwin Kostedde).

CM: Jermaine Jones (USA)
Born in Germany to an American father and German mother, he played for Eintracht Frankfurt, Bayer Leverkusen, Schalke 04, Besiktas,mBlackburn Rovers, New England Revolution.  At this moment, he is with Colorado Rapids. Jones represented Germany at the senior level, but not in an official game. He later filed for a switch to the United States. He made his debut for them in 2010 and played at the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
Jermaine Jones 

(?): Horst Rick (USA)
Rick was with Fortuna Düsseldorf, Eintracht Braunschweig and SSV Reutlingen in the German Oberliga from 1958 through 1963. In 1964, Rick played for New York Hota of the German American Soccer League. He then spent the 1965 International Soccer League with the New Yorkers. Capped once for the USA.

AM: Felix Magath (Germany)
He was the son of an American GI and a German woman.  He played for Hamburger between 1976 and 1986, winning the European Cup in 1983. He was a part of the great West German national team of the 1980's, playing in Euro 1980, Spain 1982 and Mexico 1986.
Felix Magath

ST/FW: Julian Green (USA)
Born in Germany, he graduated from the academy at Bayern Munich, but played mainly with Bayern Munich II.  He was on loan to SV Hamburger.  Since 2014, he was capped by the US.  He scored against Belgium at the WC Finals in 2014, making him the youngest American to score in the WC Finals.

FW: Jean Willrich (USA)
Born in Germany, he started his career with PSV in Holland during the 1977-1978 season.  He was a member of the team that won the UEFA Cup. He joined San Diego Sockers in 1978.  He was also on loan with UNAM Pumas.  He represented the USA at the 1984 Olympics.

FW: Manfred Seissler (USA)
Seissle played in the lower division in West Germany during the mid 1960's.  In 1967, he moved to play in NPSL.  The league would eventually emerged with NASL.  During his early years in the NASL, Seissler was one of the league’s top forwards, being named a first team All Star in 1969, 1970 and 1971.  Capped once for the US in 1973.

FW: Willy Roy (USA)
Born in Germany, Roy's family moved to the US when he was small.  In 1967, he joined the newly established Chicago Spurs of the NPSL. At the time, Roy was one of only eight U.S. citizens in the league.  He was the NPSL All Star team and being named Rookie of the Year.  A year later, NPSL merged with NASL.  The Chicago Spurs became Kansas City Spurs.  He later played with St Louis Stars and Chicago Stings.  Capped 20 times.  He scored 6 goals in the 1974 WC Qualifying matches, a record until Earnie Stewart broke it in 2001.

ST: David Wagner (USA)
Wagner grew up in Germany.  He played for many clubs in Germany.  With Schalke 04, he was a member of the team that won the UEFA Cup in 1996-1997.  Over at the club, he met teammate Thomas Dooley, who started his path to become an American citizen.  He joined the US squad in 1996.  However, after a match against Canada, Canad protested that Wagner was an ineligible player due to the fact he played for Germany at the youth level.  FIFA later cleared his status.

ST: Roy Wegerle (USA)
Wegerle was born in South Africa.  He notably played in the English Premier League for Queens Park Rangers, Blackburn Rovers and Coventry City, and in the Football League for Chelsea, Swindon Town and Luton Town. He made appearances in the United States for Tampa Bay Rowdies, Tacoma Stars, Colorado Rapids, D.C. United and Tampa Bay Mutiny. Wegerle is one of two players who played in both the NASL and MLS; the other is Hugo Sánchez.  Wegerle gained his US citizenship in 1991, after being eligible through his American wife.  He was capped 41 times.  He went to the 1994 and 1998 WC Finals.

ST: Erwin Kostedde (Germany)
Kostedde was the son of an American serviceman stationed in Germany.  He was the first Balck player ever capped by Germany.  He spent his professional in France, Belgium and Germany. He was the top scorer in the Belgian League in 1970–71 and in Ligue 1 in 1979–80.  He only earned 3 caps for Germany.
Erwin Kostedde
Honorable Mention
Kenneth Kronholm, Royal-Dominique Fennell, Michael Mason, Gedion Zelalem, Orest Banach, Andrew Wooten, Jerome Kiesewetter, Terence Boyd, Danny Williams.

Squad Explanation
-- My focus was going to be about players who are children of American servicemen in Germany(or dual citizenship), but I could not find enough players for a 23 member team.  I also did not want an all-time team of German Americans.  It is estimated that 1/3 of Americans has German ancestry.  There would have been too many players eligible.  Instead, I included German immigrants or first generation American players to the United States. Each American-born player must have at least a German parent who is a German citizen and each German player must have at least an American parent.  The players do not necessary have to be an American citizen, but the player must be eligible to play for either country.  I do not think Felix Magath was ever an American citizen.   
-- Both Juergen Sommer and Marcus Hahnemann were both sons of German immigrants in the United States,  They were born and grow up in the USA.  However, at least, one of their parents is a German citizen at one point in their life.  Kasey Keller and Brad Friedel are of German ancestry, but I do not think their parents are ever German citizens. 
-- Orest Banach was born in Germany and capped 4 times for the USA from 1969 to 1972, but I have better keepers ahead him.
-- Not everyone is a son of a US serviceman. 
-- Thomas Dooley earned his last cap in 1999, and Jurgen Klinsmann was appointed the manager of the USA team and called up the first group of German-born American players in 2011.  There were a gap of approximately 12 years.  So there must be other players with similar background playing in the Bundesliga.  I might have missed a few eligible players.
-- Gedion Zelalem has the talent to be on this team, but at the time of writing, he has less than a season of playing professional soccer. It is still premature to include him. Julian Green at least played and scored in a WC Finals match.
-- -- Roy Wegerle was born in South Africa.  However, his father was German. Although he was not actually a member of the focus group on this blog, he is still an American international player with a German parent.  I included him because he fitted into many the criteria. His brother Steve, however, was capped by South Africa.  I do not have enough information on Geoff Wegerle's citizenship.
-- Wolfgang Sühnholz and Karl-Heinz Granitza played long enough in the US.  They should have qualified with a Green Card.  Anyway, I still excluded them because I do not know their legal status while they are playing.  They were in the same situation with Geoff Wegerle.
-- Werner Roth has a German name, but he was born in Yugoslavia.  He was eligible because he came to the United States via Germany. 
-- Jurgen Klinsmann should have a Green Card(married to an American and lived in the US long enough).  Since American citizenship isn't an issue, he would have been "qualified".  I excluded him anyway.  During his playing career, I do not think he was ever eligible for the US.  Felix Magath, etc were born with the right to be an American citizen.  
-- Both Horst Rick and Herman Rapp were early pioneers of the game.  I selected them because I wanted the team to spread out into different eras.  I did not know much about Herman Rapp.  I included him because he was probably the first German-born player ever capped by the US. 


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