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January 29, 2013 at 12:02 PM

A stop and chat with Lamar Neagle

neagle 2013.jpgNew Sounders FC acquisition Lamar Neagle was at practice Tuesday before the team heads out to Arizona for the next stage of preseason camp. I missed the first question or two in his group interview with the media, but here’s a transcript of what I got…

* * *

(Was last year a lost year in Montreal or what did you get out of it?) “Every year I think you develop, and it was a new experience. Montreal is a great city. I met a bunch of new friends that I’m going to know for the rest of my life. Got a nice Italy trip out of it. It was definitely a struggle during some points in the year for playing time and for how we performed as a team. I think it’s a learning experience and I think it was good for me.”

(Where are you as a player compared to when you were here last?) “Like I said, every year is a developing year. I think I learned a lot from the guys I played behind, like Davy Arnaud and Justin Mapp. Those are older guys who have been in the league for years and years, so I think I took a lot from them — just watching them show leadership on and off the field I think helped a lot.”

(What did your mom say upon hearing you’re coming back?) “My mom thought I was lying. I always joke with her and mess with her. She’s like, ‘You’re lying to me.’ She couldn’t believe it. It took me like 10 minutes to convince her I was telling the truth.”

(It seemed like there were no hard feelings on your end being traded away last season. Why?) “It’s part of the business. I know that. It happens all the time. I kind of felt like I was going to be back here eventually. I didn’t expect it to happen this fast, but I kind of always knew that I would end up back in Seattle eventually, whether it was toward the end of my career or the middle — either one.”

(It’s an every-other-year thing for you, right?) “Yeah, I think I’ve been in preseason every year with Seattle for at least like a week, so this is nothing new. But yeah, it seems like every year something switches. Hopefully I’ve found a place to settle down and be here for a while.”

(Why is it so special to be here in your home city?) “I mean the love that I get shown on a daily basis from friends and family and the fans, just being from Federal Way, they kind of appreciate that. I can’t really put it into words how much I appreciate it. Being able to play in front of my family is huge for me. Being away, I don’t really get to see them. Now, I’m back and I get to see them all the time.”

(Did you ask Montreal to come back?) “It was something where I had some family issues and I let them know that. It wasn’t going to be something where they kind of gave me up for free. They actually got what they wanted out of it, and (I said) I would definitely love to be back in Seattle, so that’s what happened.”

(Was it weird watching the Sounders last year?) “No, not really. Being in Canada, we really didn’t a lot of your guys’ games, so I really didn’t see too much. But it was nice getting to see the guys that I did know play and play well. You guys did pretty well.”

(And, of course, you see who the league opener is against?) “Yeah, it’s kind of crazy. I’m still going to be on the same field, just in a different uniform this time. It’ll be fun to see those guys again, as well. Like I said, I made a lot of good friends in Montreal. It’ll be good to see them.”

(Did you learn any French?) “‘Bonjour.’ That’s pretty much the gist of it. Like I said, I stuck around with a lot of the teammates who were English speakers. They picked up a little bit, but I kind of stuck with them and stood in the background when they spoke French.”

(Did you ever talk with Eddie Johnson last year?) “Yeah, on the field. When you guys came to Montreal, he came up to me and said, ‘Hopefully, there are no hard feelings,’ and there wasn’t. It’s absolutely part of the business. He’s a good guy. He did well. It’s good to see him do well, and now I’m back, so all’s well.”


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