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Richards hoping to emulate Alaba and Gnabry’s loan moves to push for Bayern role

Chris Richards
Foto: Eric Alonso/Getty Images

The young American defender was sent out on loan in January and is hoping to have similar success to others who have taken a similar route to him.

Bayern Munich loanee Chris Richards is hoping to emulate Serge Gnabry and David Alaba who were both loaned to Hoffenheim and use their experiences to thrust himself into contention next season at the Allianz.

The 20-year-old linked up with Sebastian Hoeness’ side in January and has played three times in both the Europa League and Bundesliga. David Alaba, who will leave Bayern in the summer, showed his quality when on loan at Hoffenheim in 2011 as did Gnabry who had a very positive spell back in 2017-18.

Richards on Alaba and Gnabry’s positive experiences with Hoffenheim

Richards spoke to the Bundesliga’s official channel and was asked if the success Alaba and Gnabry enjoyed, had any impact on his decision to join Sebastian Hoeness’s side.

“Yes, it definitely did.

“Growing up watching their story and hearing their experiences personally from them has really been inspirational for me. That was one of the reasons I decided to come here.

“I feel good. I’ve played a few games and some important games, so it has been really good to get 90 minutes under my legs for a few weeks. It has been really nice.”

Americans are taking the Bundesliga by storm

American footballers are slowly making their presence known in the German top flight with Richards, not the only one representing his country.

John Brooks, Giovanni Reyna, Josh Sargent, Tyler Adams, along with Matthew Hoppe who is an emerging star for Schalke are just a few names that have graced the Bundesliga this campaign and Richards thinks that German clubs have now recognized that there is plenty of talent available in the American soccer system.

“I think it all started with Christian Pulisic,” he said. “I think a lot of Americans saw that us Americans can be productive and successful here in Germany and I think after Christian, it allowed Bundesliga coaches and management to realise that the US has a lot of untapped potential and I think they are starting to use it now.

“It’s kind of just this fight we have in us Americans, we always want to be the hardest working people – we want to show people, they always count us out early, especially in football.

“Not just me, but this whole new generation of footballers we have, we are kind of turning the tide on that perception of us.”

Adam Schultz
Sports writer. Cover Arsenal and Bayern Munich, lucky to be able to do what I love as a career.