Football, Unis Musa, U.S. discussed on Men In Blazers
Was quite good. And then when we came out and we're walking down the tunnel, we just see torrential rain all of a sudden coming down and anything can happen at that point. We thought the pitch will probably hold up. But it didn't hold up. So as soon as we got on the pitch, we got in our little huddle before they blew the whistle, and we just told ourselves, it's gonna be a battle. We know what this game is like. We went through it and qualifying. Obviously not what The Rain aspect, but just everything against us at all times and you have to figure out a way. That's what we did. You know, it was not pretty by any means. And honestly, it was, I played like other guys played like we honestly did not have a great game by any means, but that's what happens and you have to grind it out. But who can play football in these conditions? It was less football. It was more Royal Rumble and there was a moment when you pulled the number 7 over, it was like a horse collar tackle. It felt like you were just like, mud fight, let's do it. It was tackles like that, honestly. You know, there was a little bit of an emotional aspect to it where it was just like the game was getting dirty and down and I was like, we can play it that way if we want to play that way. So no one's going to take advantage of us. When I was younger growing up as a kid, I hated getting dirty and playing in The Rain, but now I love it. So I think it was the first tackle of the game. I just slid in my whole Jersey was just black when I stood up and I was like, all right, this is what it is. Let's get on with it. I'll tell you who can play football in those conditions. Unis Musa. This guy was unbelievable in this game. He was just having fun and just touring with people. And when I got the ball I was just like, let me just give the ball to units so dribble the whole field as he usually does. I ask you this and please do not hit me for asking Tyler others. What does it feel like to be nutmeg? Do players care in the moment? A part of you like crap. I'm going to be a GIF. Oh, no, no, no. I mean, not me because the amount of times I've been nutmeg does a defensive center made, are you kidding me? You know how many good number tens I've played against where it looks like they're going to pass or do something and they're like, oh, here you go, a little cheeky one, and I'm like, oh my God. It just happens, but I'll probably kick you by the end of the game. That's for sure. There's levels to it. You know, when you're young, when you're young, you're always going for the nutmeg. That was like my signature move, like someone's running at me full speed. I'm like, oh, just put it through the legs. A little one like that. Honestly, as I've gotten older, it's happened less and less, but there's still times that you're like, ah. Here we go again. You know, like one of those things. What are the big lessons you take from this window? As a collective. The most important lesson we talked about it as a group in our pre camp meeting was that we need to set the standard high against woke up opponents and we did that obviously starting off with a win against Morocco was a very high standard, but to an even improve on that against the even better opponent in Uruguay and then get a draw. You know, you look at it as a World Cup window, right? And if those two teams on your group and you get four points out of those two games, it's looking good to get out of your group. I think that's super important that we start to change gears in our head and think about how we need to look at the World Cup games, what we need to do to qualify to the next round and the maternity that we showed in these games was super important. And I think the second most important thing was the flexibility that we showed within our team. We played different formations. We played different players. The guys played different roles, and these were really the test matches to do that. In the U.S. football media, there is a huge debate about the number 9 spot. How much press do you read? Does any of the paper talk the social media penetrate inside? I don't read it personally. A lot of people have a lot of things to say about every position. We trust the guys that are coming into camp, Gregg trust the guys, and ultimately we trust Greg. And I think that's the most important thing that the guys that he's putting out on the field, there's a reason that he's putting them out on the field and we have a lot of quality in that number 9 role. It's just figuring out the best style play to get the quality out of them because they're also different. You have emotional ties to some of the players, as you mentioned, you came through as a youth player, we've had G, we taught lost podcast about your love for him, shared love with Christian and western who also came through with him together along with Luca de la Torre. Do you feel their success or their failure? Do you live that when they score or don't score or on the field? Is it just no place for those kind of emotions? There's always a place for those kinds of emotions. These are the guys that you grew up with went through the trenches with to get to the point where you're at right now. And they're successes when I'm watching Chelsea play when I'm watching Juventus play. I'm just rooting for them and I want them to do well because that's not only a good reflection for them but it's a good reflection on U.S. soccer and that's what we're trying to build here is that these U.S. soccer players have a reputable conversation for being top talents in the world, not just in the U.S. not just in Europe but in the world and the game of football and their successes mean a lot to me. The other seemingly open position is goalkeeper and I filmed with Matt Turner last Friday. Part of the conversation was for him how one mistaken that role can define your career. Suffered against El Salvador in crazy conditions, Shawn Johnson, man. That gen made one mistake. They're not the U.S. out of Olympic qualifying way back in 2012. If you let one in the 95th minute and it held him back and he's a fantastic goalkeeper. For nearly a decade, there is no more brutal a position in football. How do you understand the mindset keepers need to have to be successful and how it's different to you guys in the outfield as a professional footballer you have to have an ability to say next play next game living in the moment of exactly what's going on and I think that's super important. Goalkeepers obviously a little bit of a different beast in animal when it comes to that, whereas one moment can really define not just a game, but your whole career because people are looking at that moment and thinking, is he trusted? Will he make another mistake like that? Whereas for me as a center midfielder, I've made mistakes and I've been able to live with them and move on because I'm getting more opportunities I'm touching the ball 75 times. So if I make one bad pass, two bad passes in a game, they might not cost me. They train a pop for a large percentage of camp. Do they feel like a breed apart? They're different. We don't even include them in our group. Goalkeepers aren't a part of the team, you know what I'm saying? They go out 30 minutes before the team. They stay after 30 minutes after the team. They're doing their own thing in their corner over there. And when we need goalkeepers, we're like, hey Matt, come and go so we can take shots on you. That's kind of what they're there for, you know? Go bless every fan needs a base player. There are now just two more games to get things right. As we pod, U.S. soccer, have just announced fixtures upcoming against Japan and Saudi Arabia, did you feel that just now a 180 minutes between you and the World Cup, the die is almost cast. It's also strange because one of the things I looked most forward to at after qualifying for the World Cup is kind of that pre camp vibe where you're able to go in and have two or three weeks to prepare before you enter your first game in the group stage, whereas now teams a bit strange that our last games are going to be in September and then you have to bank on hopefully playing some games with your club before you head to the World Cup and you have your group stage game. So we're going to miss that opportunity to be together a couple of weeks before and get that feeling for it. But that's why we emphasize that this summer camp was so important for us. And a lot of guys got opportunities..