Ex-Bayern Munich trialist Justin Che has joined Hoffenheim on loan from FC Dallas. - © imago
Ex-Bayern Munich trialist Justin Che has joined Hoffenheim on loan from FC Dallas. - © imago
bundesliga

Hoffenheim sign former Bayern Munich loanee Justin Che from FC Dallas

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Hoffenheim have agreed an 18-month loan for FC Dallas' American teenager Justin Che, who previously spent six months with Bayern Munich in 2021.

The 18-year-old Texan joins Hoffenheim on a deal that includes the option for the Sinsheim outfit to buy the player permanently.

Che - predominantly a centre-half who can also play on the right side of defence - will immediately join up with Sebastian Hoeneß's first team squad, who are currently vying for a European spot.

He made 15 Major League Soccer appearances in 2021, supplying three assists.

"Justin is a very talented player who can play across the defence and impresses on the ball with his speed and proficiency," said director of first-team football Alexander Rosen.

"Hoffenheim is also known in the USA for its good work with young players, which has been impressively shown again in recent months with the development of Chris Richards," said Che, who has a German passport and speaks fluent German after regularly visiting his grandparents in nearby Mannheim.

No stranger to German football, Che previously spent six months on loan with Bayern last year, following a successful initial trial that also saw new Augsburg striker Ricardo Pepi try out with the record champions. After joining Bayern in January 2020, Che went on to feature eight times for the club's second string in the third division before returning to Dallas the same summer.

Che will join up with USA international Richards at Hoffenheim - currently on loan at the club from Bayern - who moved from Dallas to Bavaria after a similar trial and loan period with the record champions.

Watch: Bayern's Dallas connection

Richards' move to the Allianz Arena - and Che's first trial - was thanks to a partnership agreement between Bayern and Dallas, and the new Hoffenheim signing is the latest in a long line of North American youngsters making a pilgrimage to the Bundesliga.

Alphonso Davies has blossomed into one of the world's best left-backs since joining Bayern from Vancouver Whitecaps, while Pepi signed terms with Augsburg this month and the likes of Tyler Adams, Gio Reyna and Joe Scally have all made remarkable progress in Germany.