Getting to Know: U.S. U-17 MNT Midfielder Junior Flores
U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team midfielder Junior Flores made headlines recently for signing a pre-contract agreement with back-to-back German Bundesliga champions Borussia Dortmund. Still just 16, Flores’ contract doesn’t start until March 2014 when the midfielder turns 18 years old. Flores has been a part of every U-17 MNT international trip this year and will be playing in his second Nike International Friendlies tournament. ussoccer.com sat down with Flores to ask a few rapid-fire questions as fans learn more about the crafty midfielder.
ussoccer.com: What is your full name?
JF: “My full name is Herber Omar Mejia Flores. My teammates just call me Junior and my coach calls me Jun, short for Junior. My family has been calling me that since I was little. I don’t know why. I’m not a junior, it’s just a nickname.”
ussoccer.com: How long have you been playing soccer?
JF: “Since I was 4 years old. I started playing because my dad used to play in El Salvador and he got me into playing when I was really young. He wanted me to start with a younger team so I started with an Under-4 team and have just kept playing since then.”
ussoccer.com: Do you speak any other languages?
JF: “Just Spanish and English.”
ussoccer.com: Does anyone else in your family play professional or collegiate sports?
JF: “My brother played high school but he’s now going to community college. My dad could have played pro in El Salvador but he got a bad injury, so it’s just me right now that’s playing.”
ussoccer.com: If we were to press play on your mp3 player right now, what would we hear?
JF: “Probably Kendrick Lamar. He’s probably my favorite rapper so I listen to his stuff a lot.”
ussoccer.com: What is your favorite subject in school?
JF: “Lunch. Just kidding. I’d say, English.”
ussoccer.com: Who is your favorite U.S. National Team player and why?
JF: “My favorite U.S. National Team player is Clint Dempsey. I see how far he’s gotten and he was never part of the U-17 Residency. I see how he started out in college and got scouted from college and he made his way up to play in Europe.”
ussoccer.com: What is your favorite movie?
JF: “That’s a hard one.”
ussoccer.com: Okay, well, which movie do you quote the most?
JF: “Transformers. All of them. I think they’re my favorite.”
ussoccer.com: What is your favorite place that you have traveled?
JF: “Spain. I like the food. The beaches were nice, the stores were nice and everyone was really nice there.”
ussoccer.com: What is your favorite food?
JF: “My mom’s cooking, of course. It’s everyone’s favorite.”
ussoccer.com: What are you most excited about for the Nike International Friendlies?
JF: “Seeing the crowd. Seeing the fans and how crazy it was last year, I want to see how the crowd will be this year.”
ussoccer.com: What is your favorite sport besides soccer?
JF: “I like playing basketball. I play basketball sometimes with my friends, and I like watching it. I also play football.”
ussoccer.com: If you could invite any one person to dinner, living or dead, who would you invite and why?
JF: “It has to be one person?”
ussoccer.com: You could invite more than one person.
JF: “I’d say my parents. They’ve been there since the beginning, I love them and they’re always there for me. And it won’t be awkward because I already know them.”