Maryland sophomore Zack Steffen, considered one of the best goalkeeping prospects in American soccer, is leaving school to pursue a pro career and is close to signing with Freiburg in the German Bundesliga, the Insider has learned.
Steffen, who also serves with the U.S. under-20 national team and was affiliated with the Philadelphia Union’s youth academy, is scheduled to undergo a physical in Germany in the near future.
In 2013, he started every match as the Terrapins advanced to the College Cup final against Notre Dame at the Union’s PPL Park. This year, he anchored a Maryland defensive unit that, after a poor start, ran off an 11-game unbeaten streak and won the Big Ten championship before falling to UMBC in the NCAA tournament’s second round.
Steffen did not immediately respond to a text message seeking comment. Wasserman Media Group is handling his case. Maryland Coach Sasho Cirovski could not be reached for comment.
Freiburg is 16th in the 18-team Bundesliga with a 2-5-7 record. The club has played in the top flight since earning promotion from the second division in 2009.