Americans Abroad: The Netherlands

Matt Miazga Chelsea

By JACK HAZZARD

imgresThe Eredivisie season in the Netherlands wrapped up last weekend with Feyenoord nipping Ajax by one point to win the league. Here is a look at the performances of Americans playing for Dutch clubs.

Matt Miazga (Vitesse)

It probably wasn’t what he wanted, but the former New York Red Bulls youngster Matt Miazga was loaned by Chelsea to Vitesse. Although he missed a chance to lift a Premier League trophy, the American center back was given valuable first-team experience in the Netherlands. Miazga, 21, played in 29 matches for Vitesse, scoring a goal and providing two assists.

Vitesse had a fantastic season, finishing fifth in the Eredivisie and also winning its first trophy — the Dutch Cup against Alkmaar. Miazga will return to Chelsea and attempt to earn a spot with the first team.

Desevio Payne (Groningen)

It wasn’t a great 2016-17 season for Desevio Payne. The Groningen defender spent most of his season injured or with the U-21 team. By the end of the season, Payne made six appearances for the first team, scoring one goal.

It was nothing to be excited about for the South Carolina native. Payne, 21, is reportedly in discussions to be a part of the United States U-23 squad, but after a year of ups and downs, his stock is likely to drop.

Rubio Rubin (Utrecht)

Rubio Rubin‘s time in the Netherlands is over. After playing only three matches for Utrecht this season, Rubin, 21, opted to move in January to Silkeborg in the Danish Superliga. Rubin played three times for Silkeborg.

Gedion Zelalem (Venlo)

Another year and another loan for the United States and Arsenal youth product Gedion Zelalem. Last year, Zelalem, 20, went on loan to Rangers in Scotland. This season, he was loaned to Venlo in the second tier Eerste Divisie. He made eight appearances and scored one goal. Venlo won the league and earned promotion to the Eredivisie.

Zelalem has been with Arsenal since 2014, but has yet to make an appearance with the first team. His future in North London is truly up in the air.