The record-breaking transfer of Ricardo Pepi from FC Dallas to Augsburg is almost finalized, 90min can confirm.
The 18-year-old has enjoyed a remarkable breakout in 2021, scoring 13 goals in 24 MLS starts – the highest-scoring campaign of any teenager in league history – for a Dallas side struggling at the foot of the Western Conference.
That was enough to see Pepi named the MLS Young Player of the Year for 2021, while he was also named in the All-Star squad, scoring the winning penalty as the MLS team beat a Liga MX XI in a shootout.
His form has translated to international level, too, with Pepi grabbing three goals and three assists in his first seven USMNT caps.
As first revealed by 90min, Pepi has been the subject of intense interest from some of Europe’s biggest teams. The teenager has been courted by teams from across the ‘Top Five Leagues’, while Dutch giants Ajax also showed early interest.
Initially, Dallas seemed reluctant to negotiate, with club president Dan Hunt even insisting he expected Pepi to be back in Frisco come the start of the 2022 campaign. Pepi even submitted a transfer request to ensure he got his move across the Atlantic ocean.
Eventually, it came down to Bundesliga teams Augsburg, Wolfsburg, and Bayern Munich, while Wolves headed up a clutch of Premier League clubs chasing Pepi. The finances behind the deal remain unclear, but sources have told 90min it will break the record set by Alphonso Davies’ transfer from Vancouver Whitecaps to Bayern Munich for outgoing homegrown MLS transfers.