Wednesday, January 13, 2010

An Interview with Jarryd Goldberg

Today we bring you an interview Robert Scorca and I did with Jarryd Goldberg, one of Miami FC's standout players. Jarryd was born November 13, 1985 in Livingston, New Jersey. Goldberg attended Ridge High School in Basking Ridge, New Jersey, and played college soccer at Boston College and Boston University. While at college, Goldberg took part in the 2005 Maccabiah Games, winning a silver medal with the US team.

Following are some questions Jarryd answered for us:

Robert Scorca: Last year you came into your own with Miami FC. What do you feel helped you the most with your development from your first year here to last year?
Jarryd Goldberg: Thank you for the compliment on me coming into my own last year. I truly felt that last season I grew in a lot of ways as a player. I felt more comfortable on and off the field. A big reason for this was the opportunity Zinho and the rest of the coaching staff gave me. I felt a responsibility to my teammates, to the coaching staff, and to the fans to become somewhat of a leader on and off the field. Being one of the returning players from the season before, I felt it necessary to help out others on the team that were in need of some guidance. In addition to honing certain responsibility, I also tried to build on the things that Zinho preached at practice everyday and worked very hard to do the things I could do to help the team.

RS: Do you have any superstition before the game?
JG: I eat the same type of meal the night before a game (chicken and pasta) usually and I always put on my shin guards during warm up on game day and don't take them off at all before kickoff.

RS: You recently came in third in the "Miami Ultras Player of the Year" voting, even though you were a write-in vote. What do you think about that? Have you noticed that you are one of the fan favorites? Do you hear the Fans in the stands during the game or do you lock them out?
JG: I am very honored to have been one of the fan favorites at Miami FC. Thank you to all the fans that voted for me and also to all the fans that came out to support me this year. I am very grateful. I truly enjoyed playing for Miami and I always had fun after the game, win or lose, hanging out with the fans and signing some autographs. Yes, I could always hear the fans during the game but sometimes your so locked in on the game that you don't hear the words.

RS: Who is the USL-1 player who matches up best against you or the player you get along with best on the field?
JG: Playing against Johnny Menyongar of the Rochester Rhinos is always a challenge. He is quick and crafty and always tries to get you unbalanced, but I enjoy going up against him because he is one of the best players in the league.

RS: You are good friends with Ethan Zohn the winner of Survivor:Africa. Tell us about your friendship and your common love of soccer.
JG: Ethan Zohn is the man. We first came into contact with each other through mutual friends of ours. Turns out we know a lot of the same people through Maccabi USA, both of us being Maccabi Alums. In my short time knowing Ethan, I have learned quickly how amazing of a person he is through his work with grassroots soccer and his player agency. He
really cares about helping people and I think the world of him.

RS: You also have a very creative blog called "Show me Ur soccer Ball" We would love you to introduce this blog to everyone out there. Any familiar names who have posts on Show me Ur soccer Ball?
JG: Show me Ur Soccer Ball evolved out of my love for soccer and my passion to spread the joy soccer brings into so many people's lives around the world. I thought it would be a creative way to bring soccer fans around the world a little bit closer together. I want to ultimately create a medium where people can post their own pictures and stories, and I have recently realized a blog might not be the best thing for that so I am re-evaluating how to bring Show Me Ur Soccer Ba
ll to the next level.
So far, there are a few posts from people, including Ami Monson (program director for Maccabi USA) and Zourab "Zee" Tsiskaridze‏ from Miami FC, now of the Vancouver Whitecaps. More are sure to come!

RS: Was soccer always your first love growing up or was this the sport that you excelled at?
JG: Soccer was always my true love. I played baseball, soccer, and tennis growing up, but when I entered middle school, I chose to focus on soccer and play year round. My baseball coach from the year before, who drafted me first in the Basking Ridge little league draft, called me to see if there was anything he could do for me to continue with baseball. It was pretty flattering and is a funny story to tell today, but I chose soccer because it was what I loved the most.

RS: Who was the player you admired growing up?
JG: I greatly admired Tab Ramos growing up. I remember watching him with the MetroStars and the US National Team and loved the way he played. I went to his soccer camp and actually got pretty close with him. He is a really nice guy. He always told me that I reminded him of himself as a player. That was one of the best compliments ever.
RS: Who from your past was the most instrumental in your growth in soccer?
JG: My mom is definitely the most instrumental person in my soccer growth. If it weren't for her driving me everywhere I needed to be for the numerous teams I competed on growing up, I would not have grown into the player I am today. She always pushed me to do my best and go after my dream, playing professional soccer.
I also have to give credit to the rest of my family for always being on my side and coaches Tom McLaughlin and Ian Hennesy for being major contributors in my growth as a player. Thank you to everyone else who has helped me along the way, for there are so many people I am leaving out.

RS: What was your biggest soccer moment?
JG: Winning a silver medal with the US Maccabi team in the Maccabi Games in Israel was a major soccer moment in my life. Our team battled against the U-23 Israeli national team in the Gold Medal match in front of 15,000 people in Maccabi Haifa's stadium, eventually falling 2-0.

RS: Any closing thoughts or a word to fans heading into the New Year?
JG: I want to sincerely thank all of my fans for following my career and appreciating what I do on the field. It is very flattering and makes me feel very lucky to have fans come up to me after games and tell me that they like the way I play. I will always try to play my best, and more importantly, be a good person on and off the soccer field. I want to thank you Robert for your devotion to the game of soccer and for being an amazing fan. I also want to thank Ed and the rest of the Ultras. I want to wish you guys (and girls) and all of the world a happy new year! Check out this video of Jarryd:


Anonymous said...

Is Jarryd signed for this year? Has anyone been signed? I'd like to know if Miami FC will have enough time to put a good team together.

Riccardo Troiani said...

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Sport City-Calcio

Anonymous said...

So has Goldberg signed yet?