Gameday Q&A: Sherjill MacDonald

Mac talks earning points on the road, stadium atmosphere and learning Dutch

In today’s Gameday Q&A, I speak to Sherjill MacDonald who hopes to bag his first goal of the season in his second start of the 2013 MLS campaign Saturday at Sporting KC (LIVE 2:00pm CT on NBC Sports Network).

Jeff Crandall: How difficult is Sporting Park as an away venue? How does it compare with some of the places you’ve played in Holland, Belgium, England and Germany?

Sherjill MacDonald: “I think Kansas City’s stadium is fantastic. In Belgium where I played we don’t have those quality types of stadiums so it was nice to play there. The atmosphere is very good. I think from all the stadiums I’ve been too, KC has one of the best I’ve seen.”

JC: How is your fitness level heading into today’s game?

Coach's Take: Sporting KC

SM:  “I feel very good. We had a tough week of training but I feel good. Much better than last week. I think I did everything in the preseason and I feel well but everything can get better obviously.”

JC: How important is it to come away from Kansas City with at least a point?

SM: “If you lose two games in a row the motivation is there. This is the perfect time to play against Kansas because we’re all more motivated to get the points. It’s not going to be an easy job because I think Sporting is one of the better teams in the league.”

JC: I’ve never tried to become fluent in anything but English but a quick glance at the Dutch language looks like its slightly difficult to learn. Agreed?

SM: "It’s very difficult you know? It’s one of the most difficult languages I think – there’s a lot of grammar you have to learn and yeah its just tough. For me its difficult to say because I’m Dutch. If I wasn’t from Holland, I could understand why someone would have a tough time.

JC: Think back in your career. What is the favorite jersey you’ve worn (aside from the Fire shirt of course)?

SM: "Where I first started my professional career, Anderlecht in Belgium. Purple is my favorite color and that’s what they wear. Anderlecht no doubt."

JC: You have Surinamese heritage and Wikipedia even goes as far as to say your brother has played for the country’s national team is that true.

Previewing Sporting KC

SM: (Laughs) "I have that heritage but my brother hasn’t played for the national team. Maybe some other relative but that’s not my brother. I don’t know who it is.  I go to Suriname every three or four years. My parents are from there and I go to visit relatives. It’s not a ‘holiday’ spot but its good to see family."

JC: The team is 0-2-0 but a look at the team on paper indicated the side is better than the record says. Would you agree?

SM: "We have some new players and sometimes you need time to glue the team together. We’re getting better. I think the first game against the Galaxy was bad and we improved a lot against New England. You don’t get the results though and it’s disappointing. Hopefully we can make up for it against Kansas City."

JC: How much do you think the absence of Arne Friedrich and Logan Pause have played into the team’s start this season?

SM: "No doubt it’s a big impact. We’re used to playing with Logan and Arne and last year they were both big factors in our team. You miss a lot of leadership with both of them and something like that’s not easy to replace."