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July 31, 2012 at 3:53 PM

A stop and chat with Sounders FC’s newest designated player: Christian Tiffert

tiffert.jpgThere was a new addition at Sounders FC practice Tuesday — the team’s latest signing, designated player Christian Tiffert (pictured in uniform on the left with the team’s director of communications, Jeff Garza).

The German midfielder arrived Monday, but still must receive his P-1 visa before he’s eligible to play. Coach Sigi Schmid said that could come at any time, but they’re not necessarily expecting it before the weekend.

As an FYI, English isn’t Tiffert’s first language, but he handled the group interview quite well. Here is a transcript (SoundersFC.com video posted at the end):

* * *

(What do you think of Seattle?) “I was here five weeks ago. I was really impressed. You cannot see many games in Germany because of the difference between the time (zones). But it was nice — the stadium, many people there. I liked it very much.”

(How did your first practice go?) “I feel a little bit tired because yesterday I (flew from Germany to Seattle), and I saw the difference between the time. But it was good.”

(Did you always think you would become a Sounder? How did the deal come together?) “I don’t know. They called me (about playing here) and wanted me to visit. I never expected that it could be a deal to come to USA, but I’m happy about it. Really happy.”

(Did you have options?) “I had options, but I like the life. For my family, it’s very good. I have two kids. My wife and I and the kids want to do an adventure. I hope I can bring Seattle more success.”

(Does it help to have German connections on the team?) “Of course. It is a help. I say my English, it’s ‘school English’ (from) 10 years ago. But I can learn. No problem. I can understand (many) things and I’ll learn.”

(We saw you in a cooking video. You excited to check out Seattle’s food scene?) “If there’s a German restaurant, I can be a cook (laughs). … But it was only a joke. That’s a very famous man in Germany and I got the invitation. It was a pleasure to do that.”

(We’ve been told that the Sounders like your leadership. Is that hard to bring to a new team?) “It depends on what are you doing on the field. What kind of action you have, not if you speak too much. I can do it, no problem, but it depends on what are you doing on the field. (Do you lead by example) or are you only a speaker? I hope I can do much action.”

(Do you feel MLS is a good fit for you?) “Of course. I play 13 years in Germany (and Austria). It was good for me, I had a good career, and now I can have a good career in the USA. (As I said), I hope that I can bring Seattle more success.”

(How would you describe your style of play?) “In Germany — I don’t what you say here — I’m a No. 8. Not too much (on defense), but I can do it, you know? And then I can switch to No. 10 from No. 8, but I play also in Germany (on the) right or left side. It’s no problem.”

(We know you had some preseason with Kaiserslautern. How fit do you feel?) “I don’t know. The season starts in Germany this weekend. … There were no practice games, but I have five weeks preparation. I think I’m fit because in Germany you work hard and it’s warm. I think I’m fit.”

(Do you know much about the Sounders style of play?) “I’ve seen one game, only one game, five weeks ago against Kansas — a draw, I think, 1-1. I (saw) the game and I was impressed. Many people say I don’t know some things about playing in the MLS, but I was impressed.”

(Did you pick a jersey number yet?) “For me, it’s not important.”

* * *

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