Michigan star trying luck in Europe
The exodus of top talent from college soccer to the professional level has been a sizable one this winter, and now it appears yet another college star has left the college game to go pro.
University of Michigan freshman Soony Saad, the leading goal scorer in the nation in 2010 with 19 goals, has left Michigan to pursue professional options. Saad confirmed his departure from Michigan to Fox Soccer on Thursday.
"I'm currently in Europe trying to pursue a professional career," Saad told Fox Soccer. "I already left my college."
Saad identified four clubs he is in talks with for trials. Bayern Munich, Anderlecht, SC Freiburg and 1860 Munich are teams he has plans to spend time with in the coming weeks as he searches for his first professional contract.
The National Gatorade Player of the Year as a senior in high school, Saad helped lead Michigan to its most successful season in school history, a season that saw the Wolverines win the Big Ten championship and reach the NCAA College Cup semifinals.
A productive goal scorer and dead-eye finisher (he compiled 172 career goals in high school), Saad was passed over for consideration for Major League Soccer's Generation adidas draft class and promptly left Michigan after one semester to pursue European club options.
Saad's success at Michigan led to a training camp invitation
with the U.S. Under-20 national team, though he is considered a
long shot to make the team.