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April 4, 2014 at 12:01 PM

Yedlin back from U.S. duty ready for Timbers: ‘Wouldn’t miss this game for the world.’

We got a few minutes with Sounders FC defender DeAndre Yedlin after practice Friday. The Seattle native is back from the USMNT, where he played 19 minutes off the bench in Wednesday’s friendly against Mexico.

Here is a quick transcript of the interview:

*     *     *

(Did it feel more comfortable going to the USMNT this second time?) “Yeah, definitely. I think it was a little bit less overwhelming and I could relax a little bit more. Finally think I got in a groove, so I’m looking to build on that.”

(And you’re ready to play a full 90 tomorrow?) “Even if I played 90, I’d be ready for 90. Wouldn’t miss this game for the world.”

(What was the atmosphere like?) “It was crazy. It felt like an away game, but it was amazing. I’d never really experienced 50-60,000 fans against you, so that was pretty cool. It was a great atmosphere and it was a great game.”

(Usually you’re just about the youngest guy in camp, but this time a lot of attention was on someone a couple years younger. Could you relate a little bit to what Julian Green was going through?) “Definitely. In a way, I almost feel it’s too much attention for him, especially being a young guy. It’s hard to handle that kind of pressure, but I know he’ll be able to deal with it. He’s a great player, and it was just kind of like my first match. He was excited a little bit, probably overwhelmed. It’s pretty crazy: he ran over and the whole United States’ section was cheering his name. That’s probably got to be a little crazy for him, but I definitely think he’ll settle into the team. He’s a great player.”

(Most people haven’t seen him play that much. What did you see from him in training?) “He’s a guy that likes to take you on 1v1. As a defender, that’s what you hate the most. He has good movement. He’s quick. He’s good with the ball. He can cut in and use both feet. So as a defender, that’s kind of your nightmare — a guy that just wants to go at you. I think that’s what he provides for the team.”

(How would it feel if you were matched up against Steve Zakuani tomorrow?) “That’d be great. Zakuani is obviously a great player, and I would love that challenge. I’ve had to do it here in practice but not in an official game, so that’d be pretty fun and it’d be a great challenge for me. It’d be great to play against him.”

| More in Sounders FC, Stop and chats

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