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American soccer players in Europe: Christian Pulisic has career year in first season with Milan

More Americans than ever are playing abroad and growing into roles with teams in top leagues.

While some players are finding their feet at new clubs, others have hit the ground running early this season.

We've listed the top performing Americans based in Europe this season.

Jump ahead here:

Let's dive in!

Pulisic stars for Milan

Christian Pulisic has 12 goals and seven assists in Serie A this season, putting him second among his teammates in goals and goal contributions. It's his first time reaching 10 league goals in a season.

He has played the third-most minutes of any outfield player on AC Milan and has another five goal contributions in European competition.

Pulisic won Serie A's Player of the Month Award for December, during which he scored two goals and provided two assists.

The American winger's previous best season was nine goals and four assists for Chelsea in the 2019/20 season, and it seems he has reached a new level in Italy.

Matt Turner loses No. 1 position at Nottingham Forest

Greece's No. 1 goalkeeper Odisseas Vlachodimos, formerly the starter for Benfica, was signed by Nottingham Forest over the summer to rival Matt Turner. Forest also signed Turner in the summer. In January 2024, Forest brought in another 'keeper: Matz Sels from Strasbourg.

Turner clearly has not held the faith of new coach Nuno Espirito Santo - a former goalkeeper himself - or the club's owner, Evangelos Marinakis.

This season Turner has conceded 28 goals in 17 matches. That said, Turner has by far the best save percentage of the three goalkeepers at 67.5 percent, and his post-shot expected goals saved versus average per 90 minutes is the best among the team's 'keepers, too.

Fellow American player Gio Reyna joined him on loan in the January transfer window after the midfielder arrived from Borussia Dortmund.

Josh Sargent develops into a top Championship striker

Josh Sargent started the season as one of the top strikers in the English Championship, but the Norwich City star's lethal form was halted by an injury suffered 14 minutes into Norwich's game against Huddersfield on August 26.

Luckily for Sargent and his teammates, he only needed 11 minutes to get on the scoresheet in that game.

Four months and three days after his injury, he returned in a 1-0 loss to Milwall on December 29, and three days later, he scored on New Years Day against Southampton for his first goal post-injury.

Sargent has 16 goals in 26 games, good for joint-sixth in the Championship despite missing 20 matches.

Haji Wright scores penalty against Manchester United

Another American striker, 25-year-old Haji Wright, is impressing in the English Championship this season in addition to Sargent. Wright joined Coventry City after two prolific years for Turkey's Antalyaspor, and he is level with Sargent with 16 goals in 44 Championship matches.

While he hasn't reached Sargent's goals per 90 minutes standard, Wright is still the leading scorer for a Championship team that competed for a spot in the promotion playoffs. Sadly for Wright, Coventry missed out on the playoffs by nine points.

Coventry City made a surprise run to the FA Cup semifinal at Wembley Stadium, where they took Manchester United to extra time but lost in penalties. Wright scored a penalty during second-half stoppage time to send the game to extra time and he netted his spot kick in the shootout.

Wright's six assists show he has another dimension to his game aside from his finishing.

Folarin Balogun adjusting to Monaco

Of the many USMNT players to make transfers this summer, Folarin Balogun's was arguably the highest profile considering the nearly $40 million transfer fee that AS Monaco paid to Arsenal.

Balogun has played in 28 of Monaco's 33 Ligue 1 matches. He has scored seven goals and added five assists this season as Monaco sit second in Ligue 1.

His most notable performance was scoring two goals in 26 minutes off the bench in his team's 5-2 away win over Metz on March 30.

Robinson, Ream key to Fulham's stability

Fulham, nicknamed "Fulhamerica" due to having two Americans in Antonee Robinson and Tim Ream, owe some of their stability to the presence of those two players on the left side of defense. Fulham is in 14th place and has clinched a spot in the Premier League for 2024/25 as they're 18 points clear of the relegation zone.

Ream, a left-sided center back, captains Fulham while left-back Robinson holds down the left flank. At 36 years old, Ream's playing time has decreased this season in favor of the more youthful partnership of Calvin Bassey and Tosin Adarabioyo.

Robinson is second among Fulham players in assists with six and leads all outfielders on his team in minutes played by more than 500. Fulham has picked up key wins over Manchester United, Brighton, Tottenham, and West Ham since late February.

Tillman joins Pepi at PSV permanently; Dest returns to Spain

Malik Tillman has had his loan from Bayern Munich to PSV turned into a permanent transfer for a fee around $14 million, meaning he joins Ricardo Pepi at the club beyond the 2023/24 season. Meanwhile, right-back Sergino Dest will return to FC Barcelona despite posting six assists in 25 league games.

Pepi, a 21-year-old striker, has scored seven goals - fifth on his team - and added an assist in the Dutch Eredivisie so far, and he added more goals in UEFA Champions League qualifying against Sturm Graz of Austria and in the group stage against Sevilla.

All but one of Pepi's 26 Eredivisie appearances have come off the bench, as PSV coach Peter Bosz prefers to start 33-year-old Luuk de Jong. De Jong is a veteran who has played across Europe and had 27 goals and 15 assists in the league this year - so there are few strikers better for Pepi to learn from.

Sergino Dest has started 33 games in all competitions, splitting time between right and left back. He has two goals and six assists in the league, plus one assist in the Champions League group stage. Despite him finishing seventh among PSV outfield players in minutes played, his loan will not be made permanent.

Attacking midfielder Malik Tillman, aged 21, joined PSV on loan from Bayern Munich but has since seen his PSV deal made permanent. Tillman has nine goals and 11 assists in all competitions, posting the joint-third-most goal contributions on PSV.

Tillman is in the 95th percentile or higher among attacking midfielders and wingers in goals, assists, shot-creating actions, expected goals, expected assists, and touches in the attacking penalty area.

McKennie thrives as Weah struggles at Juventus

After both Weston McKennie and Tim Weah were shoehorned into the right wing-back role in Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri's 3-5-2 early in the season, McKennie forced his way back into his preferred central midfield position while Weah has spent most of his time coming off the bench.

Since the calendar turned to 2024, McKennie has eight assists, including two multi-assist games against Frosninone - one in Serie A and one in the Coppa Italia - and a two-assist outing against Atalanta. He leads Juventus with seven Serie A assists.

Weah, on the other hand, has no goals and one assist in 1,123 Serie A minutes. With Juventus banned from European competitions this season due to breaches of financial rules, it has been hard for the American winger to find consistent playing time for Italy's fourth-placed team.

Giovanni Reyna loaned to Nottingham Forest

Giovanni Reyna had only appeared in eight of Borussia Dortmund's 16 Bundesliga matches this season, and he has no goal contributions in all competitions. As a result, the club loaned him to Nottingham Forest, who are in a relegation battle in the Premier League.

His inability to stay healthy and Dortmund manager Edin Terzic's preference to play the likes of Marco Reus, Julian Brandt, Jamie Bynoe-Gittens, and Donyell Malen in attacking midfield have been the reasons why Reyna had not played much.

Reyna got his first start for Nottingham Forest in his seventh match with the team, and he made good on his manager's faith by contributing an assist in a 2-2 draw against Wolverhampton Wanderers.

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