Americans Abroad: Scotland

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By JACK HAZZARD

imgresWith the Scottish Premiership soon to wrap up its 2016-17 season, here is a look at the performances of Americans playing for Scottish clubs.

Perry Kitchen (Heart of Midlothian)

The season was a huge success for the Perry Kitchen, 25, a defensive midfielder. Earning the captain’s badge seven weeks into the season, Kitchen showed his leadership and ability while helping his side fight to play in continental competitions. Although Hearts will miss out on Europe next season, Kitchen’s improvement on both defense and offense should make the former D.C. United player appealing to potential suitors.

Kitchen is looking for a move to bigger and better things on the club front, and might, just might have caught the attention of United States national team coach, Bruce Arena.

Bjorn Johnsen (Heart of Midlothian)

Much like Kitchen, Björn Johnsen enjoyed a breakout season with Hearts. Having bounced around from league to league, country to country, the striker who was born in New York City performed away from the spotlight in Scotland. Johnsen, 25, scored a respectable seven goals and provided seven assists in 35 matches. As of now, the son of a Norwegian father and American mother has flown under the radar, but after his strong season in Scotland, the imposing 6-foot-5 striker could have an interesting future for club, and perhaps country (Norway or the U.S.).

Emerson Hyndman (Rangers)

Emerson Hyndman, 21, was one of the stars for Rangers this season. After dropping a few spots in the league table, Rangers elected to sign reinforcements in January; hence, the acquisition on loan of Hyndman, who had been at Bournemouth in England. In Glasgow, Hyndman appeared in 17 matches, scoring four goals and providing four assists.

Hyndman is nursing a foot injury that ended his season. Bournemouth Coach Eddie Howe said: “We don’t think the injury is too bad and we hope Emerson will be with us from the first day of preseason. There is a slight problem with a bone in his foot but it doesn’t require an operation. We think it will heal itself.”