Brad Guzan Q & A: ‘All the Little Things Make a Big Difference.’
U.S. Men's National Team and Aston Villa goalkeeper Brad Guzan speaks with ussoccer.com about the Villans' up-and-down start to the 2013-14 Premier League season, and the importance of using the limited time the MNT has together to best prepare for next May's World Cup training camp.
Sep. 24, 2013
© John Todd/U.S. Soccer
After a tough start to the campaign, it must be nice to grab an away win at Norwich this past weekend.
Brad Guzan: “It was a good result for us. Carrow Road is not an easy place to go and play. Not many teams go there and get points, especially three. For us it was a huge result, especially coming of the lackluster performance against Newcastle. It was important that we turned things around and put together a good showing.”
Why is this result so important at this stage of the season?
BG: “We started off well with a big win at Arsenal. After that, we had some decent performances but the result weren’t there. It wasn’t our best showing against Newcastle and we knew it had to be better. In this league, every game and every chance to pick up points is vital. For us it was especially important since we have Manchester City on the weekend. Going away to Norwich was a huge change for us to put together a performance. Hopefully we can build on that this week.”
You had a couple key saves, including a stop on a penalty. How important is it for a goalkeeper to have those moments in terms of giving their team
BG: “That’s part of being a goalkeeper. You want to give that confidence to the guys in front of you, the feeling that when things do go wrong or teams get a chance that you’re going to hopefully be able to make a save or bail them out. You need to try to make saves to give the team a chance to win the game.”
How would you rate the first part of your season?
BG: “For me, I feel like I’ve been able to make a few saves. Obviously it’s not enough because our last three games weren’t positive for us. I’m trying to get better each week and hopefully prove to the manager that I should be in the team. I want to make saves. If I can do that, I’m doing my job.”
It’s been a pretty challenging schedule to start the season, with games already against Arsenal, Liverpool and Chelsea, and now you take on Manchester
City. How are you gearing up for this weekend?
BG: “We know that they are a really good team with some world class players. Our performances against the big teams have been really good, and that should give us confidence going into that game. Hopefully we go out and not hold anything back. We have nothing to be afraid of. We want to go out and get a positive result. Being at Villa Park is a huge advantage for us. We want to get the supporters behind us and make it a special day for everyone.”
The final two World Cup Qualifiers are on the horizon and the job of qualifying is already done. How does the team approach the games against Jamaica
BG: “Every time we come together it’s important first and foremost to get results. We want to win games and show the world, and especially our region, what the U.S. is all about. We have to use these times to continue to grow as a team.”
Beginning in October, there are only five international fixture dates before the start of the World Cup training camp next May. That’s not a lot of
time together …
BG: “One of the key factors is making sure we are continuing to come together on and off the pitch. There are a lot of experienced guys, and at the same time the manager continues to introduce new faces here or there. We have to make sure guys feel comfortable in the group. It’s all the little things that make a big difference leading up to the World Cup. We have to use our time together in a smart way.”