US forward Matthew Hoppe joins 2nd-tier Middlesbrough
MIDDLESBROUGH, England (AP) — United States forward Matthew Hoppe joined second-division Middlesbrough on Wednesday from Spanish club Mallorca in search of regular playing time that could earn him a World Cup roster spot.
The 21-year-old Hoppe signed a four-year contract after one season in Spain’s top flight, where he made just seven appearances for Mallorca, with no goals. He did not make a La Liga start after Sept. 22 and had just three league substitute appearances.
U.S. goalkeeper Zack Steffen moved to Middlesbrough last month on loan from Manchester City. Steffen hopes to be the starter for the Americans in Qatar, but he played in just nine matches last season for City.
The 6-foot-3 Hoppe played for German club Schalke after starting his career with the LA Galaxy Academy. He was the first American to score a hat trick in the Bundesliga.
He made his U.S. national team debut in July 2021 and his lone international goal was a late winner in a 1-0 victory over Jamaica in the quarterfinals of the CONCACAF Gold Cup.
Also Wednesday, Premier League club Brentford signed Denmark midfielder Mikkel Damsgaard from Sampdoria in Serie A. The transfer fee was not disclosed. The 22-year-old Damsgaard signed a five-year contract with the west London club.
“He is a young player with big potential to develop further,” Brentford manager Thomas Frank said. “Mikkel is capable of creating and scoring goals and he has the ability to run with the ball past players.”
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