Josh Gatt is not a player many American soccer fans have seen play, but he is already considered one of the best young Americans playing in Europe.
The speedy Michigan native has enjoyed an outstanding start to his professional career, going from 18-year-old newcomer to 20-year-old transfer target, having already made one upward move from Austrian club SCR Rheindorf Altach to Norwegian champions Molde.
Here is my recent Fox Soccer feature on Gatt, with some background on how he made it through a rough first year as a pro, as well as the story of how he convinced his father that soccer was the right sport for him.
Here are some more thoughts on Gatt:
He can play both as a right winger and as a right back. Gatt has played both for Molde, and U.S. Under-23 national team coach Caleb Porter has already begun taking a look at Gatt as a right back.
Gatt passed up a chance to play for Indiana University to chase his dream of becoming a professional soccer player. Some people question whether MLS dropped the ball on not identifying Gatt as a prospect. That is a silly way to look at Gatt's rise in Europe because the reality is he was a raw prospect when he got to Austria and eventually blossomed there. It isn't anybody's fault Gatt didn't wind up in MLS. He took a tremendous chance going pro, and flourished. Not many would have seen that coming, at least not this quickly.
Gatt has yet to be called by Jurgen Klinsmann, and it may be a while before that happens. Gatt is still just 20, and the focus for him at this point should be the U.S. Under-23 national team and Olympic team, assuming Molde releases Gatt for Olympic qualifying in March.
Does Gatt have a national team future? Absolutely, but rushing him to the senior team at this point might be a bit premature. He is still just 20, and working on his game. His time will come, just maybe not for the senior team for a while. That being said, U.S. fans have reason to be excited about such a fast and talented right winger.
Give the Fox Soccer story on Gatt a read and let us know what you think of Gatt's rapid rise.
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