News
Tyler Adams

USMNT star Adams: I'm more like Kante than Busquets

00:32 EAT 15/02/2022
Tyler Adams USMNT 2021-22
The midfielder has opened up on his style of play as the U.S. looks to successfully finish its World Cup qualifying campaign

United States men's national team and RB Leipzig midfielder Tyler Adams has opened up on his style of play, comparing himself to N'Golo Kante in terms of how he tries to operate on the field.

Adams has emerged as a star for club and country, and he figures to be a key player in the Stars and Stripes' pursuit of a World Cup place.

The 23-year-old is known for his pressing ability and ball-winning prowess.

What has been said?

"Growing up, when N’Golo Kante hit the scene, he was the player who changed the mould of how a No.6 should play the game," Adams told The Athletic. "It was no longer only the style of Sergio Busquets. Everyone wanted to be like him — and why wouldn’t they? — but I’m more like Kante than I am Busquets. So I was happy because players like this were finally getting the praise they deserve for doing the hard work and being the engine of the team.

"Not everything that Kante does is beautiful but you look at the end of the game and see how many duels and tackles he’s won and how many transition moments he stopped - that’s a huge benefit to teams, especially when you play an attacking style of football.

"Fabinho at Liverpool is another one. He does a little bit of everything. I like how well-rounded his game is and I want my game to be as well-rounded as possible."

The bigger picture

Adams, who spent the early days of his career in MLS, has made 24 appearances in all competitions for RB Leipzig this season while being a regular in the USMNT lineup.

With the USMNT in second place in CONCACAF, it's likely he will be able to feature in the World Cup in Qatar alongside midfielder Weston McKennie, who also plays in Europe for Juventus.

His style of play will help manager Gregg Berhalter imitate some of the things Adams does well at RB Leipzig.

"If you look at our national team and the way it’s built, we have so many guys who are good at pressing," he said. "They have the engines, they have the physicality, they have the desire to get after the ball because we know that one of our strengths is winning the ball when our opponent is open and getting the ball to players like Gio Reyna and Christian Pulisic.

"Playing with guys like Weston McKennie, Yunus Musah, Kellyn Acosta, those guys are built for this kind of thing. We get after guys, we tackle, we foul guys, and that creates a midfield people don’t want to play against. So we all have the instinct to win the ball and press."

Further reading