Part Three: Sacha's Final Media Day

Kljestan sat down with the media Monday morning one more time before leaving for Belgium

Kljestan Final Media Day Image 1

Photo Credit: 
Seth Rubinroit/Chivas USA

Former Chivas USA captain Sacha Kljestan, transferred to Belgium's Anderlecht last week, sat down with media for one last time Monday morning before leaving Wednesday morning to Europe. Below is Part Three of the full transcript of that interview.

Question: What are you going to miss the most about this organization?
Kljestan:  The biggest thing I will miss is the locker room. Chivas has had some good locker rooms over the years. I have been around a lot of great people and friends, and just coming in every morning and enjoying each other’s company and spending some good times on the road is something that I will miss.

Question: What is the biggest thing you take from your MLS experience?
Kljestan: Something I always say is that you have to come in and work hard everyday, and earn the respect of your teammates and coaches. When I get over there, the first thing I am going to do is work hard to try to do that.”

Question: What do you think will be the biggest challenge?
Kljestan: I am the first American to play for Anderlecht. I have had a lot of support already, but I think it will be a bigger deal when I get over there. I do not know how much they know about the MLS, but I want to prove to them not want them to judge me as and American, just as another footballer. It does not matter where I am from. I want to prove to them that I am good enough and I am not just an American kid who does not play football their way.

Question: When are you leaving?
Kljestan: Wednesday morning. My girlfriend [Jamie Lee Darley] is coming the first week of August, right around the start of the season.

Question: When does preseason start?
Kljestan: They are starting today. The coach was a little bit concerned about me not having time off, because I have been going since January with the National Team and he thought it would nice for me to have that extra one week off from the team. He also thought that it was important to get back there and meet the guys. We also have some training camps, including a week in Holland, a week in Austria and a couple of days in Germany coming up in the next month or so.

Question: When does the season officially open?
Kljestan: The league season starts officially, I believe, the first or second week of August. We have the Supercup game, which is the league champion against the Cup champion, I think is the first one on the 24th [of July] and the 27th or the 28th will be the first Champion’s League game for the third round qualifying and then a week later will be the second leg.

Question: Has coached told you what he expects from you?
Kljestan: No, he basically just said that he was happy for me and that he thought that I would do well. We didn’t spend any time on the phone or anything it was just through a text message because they are down there focused on doing their thing and once he gets back to Italy we will spend some more time talking.

Question: Did you get to meet any of your teammates over there?

Kljestan: No, they were all on vacation when I was there, so the stadium was empty. It is called Constant Vanden Stock Stadium and holds about 26,000 seats. They are adding another 10,000 seats to the top ring in the next two years or so and they actually just broke ground on a new training facility that will open in February or so and looks really nice.

Question: Did you get to meet any of your teammates over there?
Kljestan: No, they were all on vacation when I was there, so the stadium was empty. It is called Constant Vanden Stock Stadium and holds about 26,000 seats. They are adding another 10,000 seats to the top ring in the next two years or so and they actually just broke ground on a new training facility that will open in February or so and looks really nice.

Question: Who will Anderlecht play in the first round of the qualifying tournament?
Kljestan: The draw will be on July 16th, so obviously they have to play the winner of one of the next two rounds which start in the next few weeks.

Question: Are you amazed that you came so far from those days?
Kljestan: I always that thought that I would [make it to the MLS] but I don’t think that anyone else from Huntington Beach ever did. I was a small, skinny little kid who didn’t play on Varsity, I mean I was on Varsity my sophomore year but I didn’t play till Junior year. I think that everyone was a little mind-boggled that I had some other type of ability that I didn’t really show in high school to make it this level. I think that I matured a lot in college, especially after my freshman year, something that nobody got to see in Huntington Beach.