Timothy Weah: 'I love playing here'

Timothy Weah became the first player born in 2000 or later to play for the U.S. men's national team when he came on in the 86th minute of its 1-0 win over Paraguay on Tuesday.

The 18-year-old Weah's call-up drew international attention as he is the son of George Weah, the first African to win the Ballon d'Or and president of Liberia. Timothy Weah starred for the USA at the 2017 Under-17 World Cup and is eligible to play at the senior level for the USA (where he was born and raised), France (where he played since 2014), Jamaica (where his mother was born) and Liberia (which his father represented internationally).

Weah's cap on Tuesday doesn't cap-tie him -- he'd need to file a switch of association to play for France, Jamaica or Liberia -- but he was clearly thrilled -- and nervous -- about playing for the senior team of a program he has been a part of since the age of 12.

“This is what I’ve been waiting for my whole life," he said. "It’s a great feeling getting to play my first game for my country at such a young age. I was obviously looking for more [minutes], but to be on the field with such great players and such great talent -- DeAndre [Yedlin] is one of my best friends on the team -- just getting the chance to be on the field with my idols as a child is great."

In his five minutes, he showed off his range of skills on the left side and set up fellow newcomer Andrija Novakovich for a breakaway that was stopped by Paraguay keeper Roberto Fernandez.

Said Weah, "There’s a lot of nervousness coming on to the field -- it was my first game for my country -- but after that first pass, I was like, ‘OK, I got to calm down, I’ve got to chill out, I’ve got to play my game.' I almost got an assist but unfortunately Andrija didn't score. Hopefully, I will get more opportunities and I will score my first goal for my country soon and get [some] assists."

Weah said afterwards the first thing he'd do when he got on the team bus was to call his parents.

"I know they are tuning in," he said. "I know my mom is going to be screaming. I want to thank God for everything, thank my parents for everything."

Weah's appearance capped off a month during which he made his two appearances for Paris St. Germain, the runaway leader of France's Ligue 1.

"It's kind of a bummer going back because I love the United States," he said. "I love playing here, I love the country. Now it's time to go back to training at PSG and focus on our league games and apply everything I've learned here."

Weah hopes to get more playing time so he can stay in Coach Dave Sarachan's plans for the national team. Upcoming matches include a friendly against France on June 9 in Lyon.

"Hopefully, I can get more call-ups," said Weah.
1 comment about "Timothy Weah: 'I love playing here'".
  1. beautiful game, March 28, 2018 at 10:18 p.m.

    Tim has a long way to go...his dad, George, was somewhat of a late bloomer who became an oustanding player.

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