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European experience great for Philadelphia Union youngsters says no.2 Hackworth

Philadelphia Union assistant coach John Hackworth says it is a brilliant opportunity for young players from the club to train with big teams in Europe.

20-year old goalkeeper Zac MacMath is with Premier League club Everton, 20-year old midfielder Amobi Okugo is with Bundesliga SC Freiburg and 16-year old Zach Pfeffer is spending time with fellow German outfit TSG Hoffenheim and Hackworth feels their stints away from the Union will be of great benefit to both player and club.

"As a young American soccer player going to Europe, the whole culture of football over there is so different," Hackworth told MLSsoccer.com.

"It's a pretty amazing experience being exposed to that, and it's an important step in the process of their own development.

"In Europe, that's what they depend on for a huge source of their revenue - to develop players and then sell them off. It's much more difficult in this country to do that, but now that these guys are pros, that's certainly an opportunity.

"Then it becomes truly for the individual and for our club - you have to make sure it's right for both parties. If that opportunity becomes available, you want to hopefully make the most of it, for sure."

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Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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