Julian Green chooses the U.S. Men’s National Team program

IMAGE, MLSSOCCER.COM

It has been a day of breaking Julian Green stories, but the one that matters most is this: the young German-American has chosen to become a part of the U.S. Men’s National Team.

“We are absolutely thrilled that Julian Green has chosen to be a part of the U.S. National Team Programs!” U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann tweeted Tuesday afternoon, later adding, “As we have said, he is a very special talent. We wanted him to feel comfortable with our program and listen to his heart when making this decision. I personally want to thank Kalle Rummenigge and everyone at Bayern Munich for their support through this process. He is an exciting player with a tremendously bright future.”

The original proclamation came mere moments after ESPN commentator Taylor Twellman tweeted “BREAKING NEWS: @ussoccer will make an announcement in next 24/48 hours that Julian Green has opted to play for the United States.” That tweet followed a report from SI.com, reporting Bayern Munich had given permission to the 18-year-old striker to join the U.S. in Glendale, Arizona for a friendly against rival Mexico on April 2nd.

With that, Green filed for a one-time Change of Association with FIFA, securing his future with the stars and stripes.

“Obviously this was a big decision, and I spent a long time discussing it with my family,” said Green in a statement. “I was born in Florida and my father still lives there, so I have deep roots in the U.S. I’m very proud to be representing the United States.”

The switch is a major coup for Klinsmann. He invited Green into camp in the lead up to playing Ukraine with the hopes of enticing a switch. Once in camp, Green found a kinship with several German-American teammates, including Jermaine Jones, Danny Williams and Fabian Johnson, as evidenced through several pictures that surfaced through social media.

“A big part of the decision was the experience I had in Frankfurt,” Green admits. “All the players were super nice and welcomed me from the beginning. Clint Dempsey gave me a jersey with my name on it, and the way they supported me gave me a lot of belief. The coaches have shown a lot of trust in me, and now I hope to do everything I can to earn a spot on the World Cup roster.”

Besides the atmosphere around the team, SI reporter Grant Wahl also managed to unwittingly pull out further information from the young striker that could help explain his decision. When asked if a chance at playing in the World Cup could sway his thinking, Green replied with a nod. “Yes, I think so,” he said. “If I can play a World Cup at 18 years old, it would be great, amazing. But I have to train hard.”

Green even revealed Klinsmann’s bait. “The chance is there,” he told SI. “I have to play well, and we will see.”

Green has played five matches for the German U-20 team this year, earning two assists. He has also featured in 21 games for the Bayern Regionalliga side, scoring 15 goals and adding 7 assists. He will join a striker pool that already includes names like Jozy Altidore, Aron Johannsson, Terrance Boyd, Eddie Johnson and Herculez Gomez amongst others.