Unfortunately, Yedlin couldn’t do anything to sway the tide for the Spurs, who lost 1-0 to Aston Villa. But it’s encouraging news for the 21-year-old Yedlin, who could be seeing more time with Tottenham’s first team in the near future.
Yedlin burst on to the main stage at the 2014 World Cup, where his beautiful pass to Clint Dempsey helped Team USA take a 2-1 lead over Portugal. The match ended in a 2-2 tie, but if it hadn’t been for Yedlin subbing in, it’s possible that the Americans could have lost the match and missed advancing to the Round of 16. The former Seattle Sounders right back also delivered a nice cross to Dempsey against Germany; but the latter couldn’t quite head the ball in during a 1-0 loss.
Following three notable World Cup appearances for Team USA, Yedlin signed a four-year deal worth £2.5 million with Tottenham. He remained with Seattle, until they were eliminated by the Los Angeles Galaxy in the MLS Playoffs on Nov. 30. From here, he traveled to White Hart Lane to play with Tottenham, one of the better teams in the Premier League this season.
Now, four months after crossing the pond, Yedlin is getting his chance to shine. He had some notable moments in the Aston Villa match, with one being the corner he gave up in the 83rd minute. However, this was by no means a poor play since he was matched up with Villa star Christian Benteke (10 goals), and definitely gave the taller opponent a tough challenge. The one questionable play he made was losing sight of Villa’s Fabian Delph, before being saved by Spurs goalie Michel Vorm, who made a nice deflection.
Any mistakes made by Yedlin should be forgiven since he hasn’t played any meaningful league action since late November. He spent his winter training with Tottenham’s under-21 team and got called up to action this past weekend. Yedlin also appeared in three friendlies for the USA national team from January to March.
Speaking of which, USA head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has repeatedly expressed a desire to see more of his national players compete in tougher leagues than the MLS. And while MLS has made great strides in terms of talent, they still lag behind superior leagues such as Bundesliga, La Liga, Premier League and Serie A.
Yedlin is definitely one player who’s heard the call because he’s playing in what’s arguably the world’s toughest soccer league. And, unlike many Americans who’ve flamed out overseas, Yedlin is already getting meaningful playing time at the age of 21. However, he’ll need to make the most of his minutes because Spurs defender Kyle Walker is due back from a foot injury soon, meaning Yedlin’s opportunities could be reduced if he doesn’t seize the moment.