Atlanta United’s Brad Guzan on expectations, his first offseason and the USSF election

8:51 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 23, 2018 Homepage
MIguel Martinez/MundoHispanico
October 22, 2017. Atlanta United goelkeeper tosses the ball during the second half at the Mercedes-Benz stadium ware the Atlanta United tied the game 2 to 2 with Toronto FC leaves the team in the fourth place of the Eastern Conference.

Atlanta United goalkeeper Brad Guzan was one of the players who spoke at the opening of training camp Monday.

Here are a few of the things he had to say:

Q. What do you think about the new additions?

A. Very talented players. Probably the most exciting part of it is it shows the ambition of the club and where we want to go as a club.

We knew going into the start of the season that we had a very good team, based off of last year, but when you add players like that, it’s only going to one, make us better, and two, it’s going to push everyone in terms of training, fighting for spots, competition on the field. That’s what you want. At the end of you day you’ll get the best out of players and it creates a winning environment.

Q. This is the first offseason you’ve had in a while. I was curious how you spent it and how you feel now?

A. I feel really good. I feel ready to go. I was saying earlier to some of the guys this is the longest break I’ve had in at least 10 years, if not longer.

To sum it up, it was good, but I was itching to get back. We didn’t do anything too crazy. It was more just seeing family, seeing friends and just relaxing. 

There came a point when I was itching to get back into it and probably driving my wife a little crazy. But it was good.

Q. Have you been following the United States Soccer Federation presidential race? I was curious if you had any thoughts on that?

A. Yes, I’ve been following it quite closely. It’s an important time for our federation. It’s an important time for this sport in this country.

It’s a huge decision in terms of the election and hopefully we can use this opportunity to make sure that we put the sport and our federation in a position to go forward in a positive way.

Q. Is there someone that you think is going to do a better job than the other candidates?

A. At the moment, I’m on the Athlete’s Council. I’ve had conversations with a lot of the candidates, and I’ll continue to do my homework in terms of what each candidate brings to the table and how they can help our federation.

Then we will wait for election night in Orlando.

Q. So, that’s a no. You’re not going to say who you think should win?

A. I’m going to keep that to myself.

Q. Atlanta United did draft a goalkeeper in the fourth round. I was curious what you remember about your first training camp with Chivas? Well, not too far back.

A. It was way back. I had some hair. 

I just remember I was extremely excited. I remember the draft day like it was yesterday. We were in Baltimore. I was drafted. I didn’t know anything about Chivas. I flew out to L.A. Again, didn’t know what to expect. I was just excited to be a professional. I was living my dream. You go into that environment and try to soak up as much as you can, as much information from young guys, from veteran guys, from coaches, from medical staff, from anyone that’s around you you soak up as much information as you can.

I remember training with the biggest smile on my face because I was living my dream.