Guzan: Hoping to walk away with MLS All-Star Game win

John and Hugh
August 01, 2018 - 10:31 am

© John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

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Atlanta United and MLS All-Star goalkeeper Brad Guzan joined John Fricke and Hugh Douglas to talk about playing in the MLS All-Star game.  Five players from Atlanta United were selected for tonight's All-Star game against Juventus at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. 

“We’re really excited; individually I'm excited, the team we're excited. We know it should be a fun event for the fans, and we're looking forward to it.”

With Juventus being an international team, there's obviously not much familiarity with how they play. How do you prepare; do you scout them at all?

"The biggest challenge is trying to get as many guys on the same page from our own team. We've got guys from all over the league, all diferent teams. Obviously you want to try to be cohesive and be together. With only two days of training, that poses a bigger problem than the opposition."

Is this an All-Star game or is this much more; a bit of a coming out party for Atlanta, for Mercedes-Benz Stadium, for Atlanta United on a bigger stage? 

“I think it's a little bit of both. First and foremost, it's an All-Star game but, because we're hosting it and because [the franchise] has been so successful, we've got guys from all over the league that are coming in and they're in amazement of our training facilities. They're in amazement of the stadium. They're in amazement of the city. It's a showcase in itself to be able to say 'hey, this is what Atlanta's about. This is what we're about as a club. This is what the community is about.' And for me, that's a huge part of it; being able to showcase this wonderful city that we call home." 

Locally, Atlanta United has had a lot of success since the very beginning. Guzan said he didn't see it coming, but credits the fans for their support:

"I don't think anyone expected the success, and more importantly the popularity of the team. There are teams all around the world that woud love to have what we have going on here. That's a testament to the fans and them turning up week in and week out."

Teammate Josef Martinez is on pace to shatter the MLS season goal record, currently with 24 goals on the season. He's on pace to score 38 goals this season, well over the current record of 27. What is like playing with Josef Martinez?

“He’s a competitior and wants to win at all costs. He's a guy that just wants to score. When you have someone like that on your team, it's going to make you a better team overall.” 

Does winning tonight mean a lot... a little? And it was clear, Guzan wants a win: 

“Anytime you cross the white line, you want to win. It is an All-Star game, we know that. It should be a fun spectacle for the fans. But hopefully after 90 minutes, we walk away with a win. And that would be the cherry on top.”​