Emerson Hyndman made his debut for the USMNT on Wednesday as they came away from Prague with a narrow 1-0 victory over the Czech Republic.
The youngster, who only made his first Fulham appearance less than a month ago, came on for Alejandro Bedoya – who in the first half scored what turned out to be the winner – in the 67th minute.
He’s been an integral part of Felix Magath’s midfield so far this season, showing a composure that belies his age, and it came as no shock to our Manager when he received the call-up from Jurgen Klinsmann.
“Emerson is getting games at a high level and he has shown he is prepared,” Magath said. “I’m not surprised to see him with the senior US national team, and I think he will be a key player for them over the next few years.
“I came to the Club last February, and like I always have done wherever I have worked I looked at the youth team. One of the players I saw very early on was Emerson Hyndman.
“He has a wonderful range of passing, short or cross-field. He understands tactics, but at 18 years old he has a lot of time to develop and to get experience. I’m sure he will be a good player. His role could be similar to the one that Andrea Pirlo plays, responsible for the forward play of the team from deep.”
From his three matches for the First Team in 2014/15, Hyndman can boast a pass accuracy of more than 90 per cent, providing a sense of reliability that Magath relishes.
“I have never seen a player of his age play like he does; he passes like an old professional,” the Whites boss stated. “He is very responsible with the ball and tries to make things happen.
“He gives his teammates a lot of support, giving them the right direction to go on and play. He plays for the team, not for himself. He’s an exciting talent, for sure.
“Emerson is very hard working and, as I said, the responsibility he shows is unusual to see in someone so young. He’s working on his power, we know he needs to develop physically but that will come over the next few years.
“There’s no doubt, though, that Emerson will be an important player for Fulham and the US national team.”In other international news, Lasse Vigen Christensen was on target twice as Denmark Under-21s guaranteed progression to the European Championship Play-Offs with a 4-2 victory over nearest rivals Russia.