VIDEO: 19-year-old American Hoppe scores hat trick for Schalke
USMNT fans, meet your next prospective savior at the center forward position: 19-year-old Matthew Hoppe, scorer of the first-ever Bundesliga hat trick by an American player.
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Saturday marked Hoppe’s third start of the season, and it was the Yorba Linda, Calif., native’s three goals which propelled Schalke to its first win of the season and snapped the club’s 30-game winless streak in the Bundesliga. Yes, you read that right: Schalke, inarguably one of the biggest and best supported clubs in Germany, hadn’t won a single league game in 30 tries. And yet, Saturday’s win was enough to lift them out of last place.
Hoppe opened the scoring three minutes before halftime, doubled the advantage three minutes before the hour mark, and completed his hat trick three minutes after the 60:00. All three of Hoppe’s goals were assisted by midfielder Amine Harit, who also got the fourth goal in the 4-0 win over Hoffenheim.
USMNT depth chart
Given the current lack of unassailable options at center forward, don’t be surprised when Hoppe’s name is discussed and given serious consideration for his first senior team call-up during the first international window of 2021. Despite the fact he’s been a first-team professional for all of six weeks, a hat is a hat trick.
With Schalke having scored just eight Bundesliga goals entering the weekend, Hoppe’s hat trick now accounts for 25 percent of the club’s goals this season.