American left back Amaechi Igwe is putting the finishing touches on his long road to recovery from a knee injury as he played the first half for Ingolstadt in a friendly against the reserve team of Bayern Munich on Tuesday.
Igwe, 22, signed with Ingolstadt last summer but has not been able to play for the struggling 2.Bundesliga club this season due to the injury.
After a handful of quiet weekends, the German youth leagues returned to action and USYNT-eligible players had a weekend full of breakthroughs and debuts.
The highlight of the week was Timothy Chandler's outstanding performance in his first Bundesliga start. Moving from right back to right midfielder, he opened eyes by scoring a goal and assisting on two others in Nürnberg's 4-1 romp over Stuttgart.
It was a relatively quiet week among the ranks of youth national team players as a number of regulars were out of action or injured and the German U19 and U17 leagues remain on winter break until next weekend.
The two most widely-known names at the U23 level -- Jozy Altidore and Freddy Adu -- spent their first matchday with their new Turkish clubs watching from the stands. Having recently arrived on loan, they haven't had much time to integrate and therefore will wait another week to make their debuts. Nonetheless, the second half of the season promises to hold much more playing time for the duo than they received during the fall.
American forward Eugene Starikov has started his preseason off in fine fashion for Russian giants Zenit St. Petersburg at the opening game of Marbella Cup by scoring the game winning goal for Zenit in their 2-1 victory over Bulgarian club Lokomotiv Plovdiv.
With the score tied at 1-1 in the 72nd minute, Starikov entered into the game to give the team an offensive boost off the bench.