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Leeds sign USMNT attacker Brenden Aaronson

Joe Prince-Wright, Nick Mendola and Andy Edwards assess Jesse Marsch's successful mission to rescue Leeds from relegation and the ramifications for U.S. soccer as a whole.

Another USMNT attacker is heading to the Premier League this summer, as Brenden Aaronson has agreed a $30-million transfer to Leeds United.

[ MORE: USMNT upcoming schedule - World Cup, Nations League, friendlies ]

The 21-year-old American will officially leave Red Bull Salzburg and join Leeds on July 1, just 18 months after leaving MLS side Philadelphia Union to begin his European career. In 66 appearances for the Austrian giants, Aaronson scored 13 goals, including six goals and 10 assists in 41 appearances (all competitions) last season.

Aaronson appeared in eight of Salzburg’s 10 Champions League games last season, including both legs of their round-of-16 defeat to Bayern Munich (8-2 on aggregate). The USMNT youngster registered an assist in each game, playing a part in each of Salzburg’s goals in the lopsided tie.

The $30-million transfer fee taking Brenden Aaronson from Salzburg to Leeds trails only (though, it pales in comparison to) Christian Pulisic’s $73-million move from Borussia Dortmund to Chelsea in the summer of 2019.

[ MORE: USMNT roster for friendlies, Nations League: Weston McKennie returns ]

First word of Aaronson’s moving to Leeds came, literally, seconds after the Whites confirmed their place in next season’s Premier League. The deal, agreed in principle, was dependent upon Leeds and American manager Jesse Marsch remaining in the top division.

Aaronson previously played a half-season under Marsch at Salzburg, making his debut for the club in early 2021 before Marsch left to take over at RB Leipzig.

Thus far for the USMNT, Aaronson has made 18 international appearances and scored five goals (two in 2022 World Cup qualifying).

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