Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
QUICK TAKE: Joey Gjertsen
by Ridge Mahoney, April 14th, 2010 1:50AM

MOST READ
TAGS:  mls, san jose earthquakes

MOST COMMENTED

[MLS] In his five USL seasons, Joey Gjertsen, 27, won MVP honors (2006) and two league championships (2006, 2009). The Washington state product signed with San Jose this past winter as a free agent, played the opener against Real Salt Lake as a sub, and went the full 90 last weekend on the right side of midfield in a 2-1 win at Chicago. Gjertsen, who expects to keep that starting spot Wednesday when the Quakes host RSL again in a U.S. Open Cup play-in match, spoke with Soccer America's Ridge Mahoney.

SOCCER AMERICA: You were one of the USL’s top players, so have there been any major adjustments to competing in MLS?

JOEY GJERTSEN: I’ve played some big opponents in my career over five years but going into this season with a new team in a new league, I’m kind of going in like a rookie. I’m wide-eyed and ready. I’m just going to work hard and prove that I can play here. I can't say I've been surprised by anything I've seen so far, I know a few of the guys here, so this is a team I wanted to play with.

SA: You were with Montreal last year when it reached the Concacaf Champions’ League quarterfinals. Was that competition the team’s priority as opposed to the league schedule?

GJERTSEN: Obviously, in the league you know you have 30 games or whatever it is. Every league game is important but if you lose you have more games after that. In Concacaf, if you lose you might be out right there. We didn’t approach them differently but everyone had that feeling of how important it was every single time we went out, and I think that’s why we were so successful during that run we had.

SA: USL teams always pump up for U.S. Open Cup games against MLS teams. You played for Montreal and Vancouver, and Canadian teams aren’t eligible for the competition, so this will be your first experience. What are you expecting against a team you played recently?

GJERTSEN: I’ve always wanted to play in it. I’ve watched other USL teams play in it and I like the tournament format. We had the Canada Nutrilite [competition], so we played Toronto a couple of times. That being a pretty big rivalry, there were some pretty intense games. That’s probably what’ll I expect in this tournament, maybe or maybe not in the early rounds, but certainly later on.

SOCCER AMERICA: After losing to RSL at home, 3-0, in the opener, you had a week off, then went to Chicago and beat the Fire, 2-1. How did that happen?

GJERTSEN: After a game like we had in our first game you want to get back on the field and prove that game was a fluke. We turned it around and had an off week, so we had two weeks of training, and all we could think about during those two weeks was that first game. We were eager to get to Chicago and show what we have and I think we did a good job with that after two weeks of very hard training.

SOCCER AMERICA: Javier Morales scored twice on spectacular strikes in the opener but he and Ned Grabavoy were injured last weekend, so the timing for this rematch seems to work in your favor.


GJERTSEN: Salt Lake won the title last year and we were tested early against them. I don’t think you can put too much into that result, I think we’re a better team than we showed there. At times, you do have to ignore everything that’s out there, because we know as a team you can have a good showing but all that matters is the result.

We knew what to expect, but we had a bad first half and a red card in the second half, so that didn’t help. They’re strong and dynamic in midfield and use that to their advantage. Morales was all over the field and had two great goals. We were prepared, we just didn’t perform well. We’ll be better this time around.

SOCCER AMERICA: San Jose missed the playoffs the past two years. When you first joined the team, did you sense an anxiety about getting to the postseason this season after two misses?

GJERTSEN: I was fortunate to go to [USL] teams that were successful when I got there, and when I was there we were very successful. It’s different here, this is a team that hasn’t made the playoffs, and I’ve been in the playoffs every year of my career.

The players know the situation, they hear about it every day from the media, but you can’t be thinking about the playoffs when they’re five or six months away. We just have to look at each game, and the result will take care of itself.



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
MLS Trade Central: Thursday's deals    
Sporting Kansas City has signed 25-year-old Hungarian international forward Krisztian Nemeth from Roda JC  in the ...
What They're Saying: Michael Garcia    
"It is the lack of leadership on these issues within FIFA that leads me to conclude ...
Video Pick: Player loses his wig!    
The 19-year-old defender Baily Cargill was one of the top rated players for second division Bournemouth ...
MLS Trade Central: Wednesday's deals    
MLS and Chivas de Guadalajara reached an agreement regarding Mexican star Erick "Cubo" Torres, who played ...
NASL will open 2015 spring season on April 4    
The North American Soccer League will open its fifth season with the first week of the ...
Las Vegas gets its soccer stadium, too    
It isn't every day that two cities pass measures to build soccer stadiums. Hours after the ...
U.S. Abroad: Midweek Hot (and Cold) List    
John Brooks scored his first goal of the Bundesliga season for Hertha Berlin to open the ...
Road to Vancouver: More to Brazil than Marta    
Marta, whose magnificent performance powered Brazil past the USA Sunday at the Torneio Internacional da Brasilia, ...
TV Report: Fox plans unprecedented coverage    
The 2015 Women's World Cup will receive unprecedented coverage on Fox as it will air 16 ...
Klinsmann red-carded in starring role against Germany    
Jonathan Klinsmann's first international match against Germany, the country his father, Jurgen, played for and coached, ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives