Leeds United midfielder Brenden Aaronson believes we’re only at the start of an American takeover of the Premier League.
Aaronson made history as the first American player to score a Premier League goal for an American coach as Leeds thrashed Chelsea 3-0 on Sunday, maintaining an unbeaten start to the season for Jesse Marsch’s men.
Fellow United States international Tyler Adams also starred at the base of the Leeds midfield, creating two chances while making four tackles and three interceptions.
But the duo are just a small part of a wave of talent produced in MLS currently succeeding in top European competition. The Premier League, in particular, is going to have an increasing American voice in the coming years, according to Aaronson.
“It goes to show people around the world that Americans can play football too,” the former Philadelphia Union youngster told NBC after Sunday’s win at Elland Road.
“We are playing for a Premier League team, getting goals and assists and the coaching side too. There’s more and more talent, it’s a great start and it’s going to get better.”
Having already seen a goal taken away from him and given as an own-goal earlier this season, Aaronson will be relieved to finally get off the mark.
His first strike as a Leeds player was incredibly on-brand, too. According to Fbref, Aaronson figures in the top one percent of players in Europe over the past 365 days when it comes to pressures. He and Adams occupy the top two spots among Leeds United players this season when it comes to that particular metric.
So, it was no surprise to see his goal come as a result of closing down Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy.
“The message was we are going to press them, not stay back. We are going to go after them and that sums up this goal,” said Aaronson, who played under Marsch at RB Salzburg.
“I think ‘who wants it more?’ Making this final step is something Jesse always talks about. I learned the skill with Salzburg and now the whole squad is learning it and it is paying off.”
Aaronson’s work rate and skill on the ball are already making him a fan favorite at Elland Road. For the 21-year-old American to be so highly regarded at a Premier League club used to be the stuff of fantasy. No longer.
“It’s a dream come true,” Aaronson said of the start he’s made with Leeds. “To begin with, I couldn’t ask to be a better club with better fans and a better group of guys who were so welcoming. I am ready more.”
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