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US players can help MLS to compete with big leagues - Klinsmann

USA national team boss Juergen Klinsmann says it is worthwhile heading to Europe as an American player provided you are going to get the appropriate game time.

The former Inter Milan, Stuttgart, Tottenham and Bayern Munich star has seen some players from his US squads make their way to European clubs in recent years and although he backs these types of moves in order to improve the quality of the national team and the domestic league, he is aware that sometimes it does not work out.

"In term of the overall picture of players going to Europe and the MLS in general, our goal is to improve the product year by year in the United States, to make it a full year season, going down to youth development to make it a youth development and a 10 or 11-month season, to have everybody play on longer schedules in order to be competitive with the rest of the world," he said.

"When players choose to go overseas to challenge themselves I'm happy with it, but at the same time they also need to break through in Europe, otherwise they will struggle getting back into our picture.

"An example certainly is Brek Shea (at Stoke City). He wanted badly to go there and now didn't get his playing time, so he needs to figure out how he wants to continue is career.

"We all hope that every year MLS is getting stronger, it's getting bigger, the schedule is getting longer, there are more games for the players, and maybe one day MLS teams competing in the Copa Libertadores because that is tremendous experience that they can get. They're getting stronger in the CONCACAF region anyway, so it's a one step at a time process. We all hope that they can start competing with the big leagues all around the world."

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Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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