Americans Abroad rewind: Pulisic kicks off 20s in style

Alexander Hassenstein
The Dortmund star scored in the first two matches of his 20s, including a winner in Champions League play, looking recharged after an injury layoff

Christian Pulisic's teenage years were some of the best ever for an American player. His first week into his 20s suggest Pulisic isn't done setting new standards for his fellow countrymen.

Pulisic scored a Champions League winner on his 20th birthday, and followed it up with a big equalizer for Borussia Dortmund in a 1-1 draw with Hoffenheim.

It was a big week for fellow U.S. national team attacker Andrija Novakovich, who continued his smooth transition to the Eredivisie with a two-goal effort in Fortuna Sittard's latest victory. Novakovich didn't get any playing time in the recent USMNT friendlies, but his recent performances in the Netherlands suggest he should earn some minutes soon. 

Here is a look at the top performances by Americans Abroad this past week:

Christian Pulisic

Christian Pulisic Borussia Dortmund 07262018

A few weeks off to recover from a muscle injury also served to help recharge Pulisic's batteries, and he certainly looked refreshed in scoring goals in both of Dortmund's matches last week. Pulisic came off the bench to nab an opportunitistic winner in Champions League against Club Brugge before playing his first 90-minute match of the new campaign and scoring an 84th-minute equalizer to help Dortmund overcome a red card to grab a road draw.

Pulisic has a busy week ahead as Dortmund faces Nuremberg on Wednesday before traveling to take on Bayer Leverkusen on Saturday.

Andrija Novakovich

Andrija Novakovich Fortuna Sittard 09222018

Novakovich is on a tear in the Netherlands, and he made it three matches in four with at least a goal after netting his first Eredivisie double in Saturday's 4-4 draw with Willem II. Sittard is unbeaten in three straight, and Novakovich has settled in as a regular starting striker since making the summer loan move after last season's successful run at Dutch second-division side Telstar.

Novakovich and Sittard take on Helmond in the Dutch Cup on Tuesday before a home showdown with Ajax.

Lynden Gooch

Lynden Gooch Sunderland 08222018

Sunderland's quest to climb back up the ladder in England is off to an encouraging start, and Gooch has been a key figure in the Black Cats' strong start to thelr League One campaign. The 22-year-old winger scored his first two goals of the season in Saturday's 4-1 win against Rochdale. He has been a regular start on the right wing for Sunderland this season, and is making a good case for a return to the USMNT fold after taking part in the May camp with the national team.

Gooch and Sunderland travel to take on Coventry on Saturday.

Romain Gall

Romain Gall Malmo 08262018

Gall's transition to defending Swedish champion Malmo hasn't always led to regular starts, but the American midfielder is making the most of the opportunities he is being given. His most recent came on Sunday against Kalmar and Gall delivered a goal and assist in Malmo's 4-0 victory. It was Malmo's eight straight win in Allsvenskan play, and moved them to within a point of third place, and the Europa League place that goes with it. Perhaps it is no coincidence that Malmo is 5-0 in league play in matches started by Gall, who joined Malmo in a summer transfer from Sundsvall.

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Gall and Malmo will look to push their winning run in the league to 10 this week when they take on Norrkoping on Wednesday, and Gall's former club, Sundsvall, on Sunday.

Weston McKennie

Weston McKennie Schalke 09222018

It was a bittersweet week for McKennie, who experienced the high of playing well in Champions League and the low of suffering a painful injury. He delivered an assist on Schalke's lone goal in a 1-1 draw with Porto in his Champions League debut on Tuesday, then suffered a painful thigh injury in Schalke's loss to Bayern Munich on Saturday. The injury wasn't as serious as first feared, but it is still likely to force him to miss some time, and leaves his availability for the USMNT's October friendlies against Colombia and Peru in doubt.