After months of speculation as to where in Europe he could end up, USMNT phenom and former FC Dallas talisman Ricardo Pepi has officially completed a move to Bundesliga outfit FC Augsburg. The deal is worth $20 million, which is a record for a homegrown MLS player.
Now arriving in Augsburg: Ricardo Pepi 🚂 pic.twitter.com/pLVjFK5RNN
— FC Augsburg (@FCA_World) January 3, 2022
Following the announcement, Pepi reacted to his dream coming true of finally taking his talents overseas, while also praising Augsburg for their pursuit of him. Via ESPN:
“Moving to Europe after the conclusion of the MLS season was my dream,” Ricardo Pepi said. “I believe FC Augsburg and the Bundesliga will prove the perfect settings for me to gain match practice at the top level as a youngster.
“The efforts the FCA club officials put in to sign me were really impressive. As a result, I felt right away that FCA was the right club for me. I can’t wait to meet my new teammates and I want to integrate into the team as quickly as possible. I can hardly wait to get going!”
This is undoubtedly an exciting time for Ricardo Pepi but he heads into a tough situation at Augsburg, who currently sits in 15th in the Bundesliga table. However, consistent minutes could certainly be available for him and if the youngster impresses enough over the next couple of years, a move to a bigger club would certainly be in the cards.
Pepi is coming off a truly fantastic campaign for club and country. He was named MLS Young Player of the Year after bagging 13 goals in 31 appearances for FC Dallas, while also netting three times in six games for the
USMNT in World Cup Qualifiers.
Ricardo Pepi follows in the footsteps of fellow Americans Giovanni Reyna, who plays for Dortmund, and Weston McKennie, who is now plying his trade with Juventus but did play for Schalke previously. Christian Pulisic also starred for Dortmund before taking his talents to Chelsea a couple of years back.
The Bundesliga is a terrific place for young players to develop and we’ve seen some of the biggest stars in world football start out in Germany. This is the perfect move for Ricardo Pepi.