One of the cornerstones of the New England Revolution defense during their run to the finals of last year’s MLS Cup was their 2013 number one overall pick, Andrew Farrell. The 22-year-old from Louisville has started 70 times during his two year stay with the Revs and has shown himself as a fan favorite to all those in the Northeast. The young defender says that his trip to the finals is only the beginning of a great professional career.
“Personally I’m kind of disappointed in my performance (during the MLS Cup Final),” said Farrell, “I know it wasn’t my best game and especially at that stage I needed to be better.” The defender from Louisville still hasn’t watched the footage from that game against Landon Donovan’s LA Galaxy side.
Despite the setback Farrell said that he enjoyed the experience of making a run that far into the post season. He added, “I don’t think a lot of people thought we would make it that far and I am blessed to have experienced that and to have played so many games and I’m now looking forward to getting there again.”
During the Revs’ short offseason, Farrell went back to visit his family in his hometown of Louisville. He mainly focused on changing his diet and managed to lose five pounds over the break. He says his main goal for next season is to be able to play the full game; “I need to be able to play every game and be focused the whole 90 minutes, not just 75 or 60 minutes but the full game.”
Two key players during the New England season were veteran midfielders Lee Nguyen and Jermaine Jones. Farrell said that the two national team players gave the rest of the squad vital experience. “They can bring insight of how the national team camp is run for all the young guys on this team that want to make it to that camp,” he said, “but they are great players and all vets on this team are huge assets to the young guys because they have been in this league for a long time and have been doing the right things on and off the field to be great and successful pros.”
Farrell was able to play college soccer under two coaches that he considers to be some of he biggest influences in his professional career. Head coach Ken Lolla and former assistant/current SIUE head coach Mario Sanchez. One of the things that Lolla stressed to all of his players was to make a list of personal goals and place it somewhere they would see it everyday. Farrell still follows that practice today and keeps his list in a room where people go several times a day: the bathroom. “I go there at least three times a day I would say so I’ll always see it.”
What are the defender’s goals? “A lot of my personal goals for my career have a lot do with the success of my club team,” the young American said, “Being an MLS All Star, winning the MLS Cup, MLS Defender of the Year, playing for the national team, finally scoring a goal and playing in a World Cup.” He believes that all of these are realistic goals for his career. “Why not me? Why can’t I be doing that? I’ve gotten this far, why can’t I keep pushing myself to be the best that I can be?” Farrell stressed, “Not to try to be Messi or Ronaldo or Neymar, but be the best Andrew Farrell.”
In order to achieve his goals, Farrell said that he needs to work hard, giving it all he’s got and learning everyday. He added, “Be happy even when it’s tough and when things aren’t going your way you’ve got to push through it because there is an end location you want to be at and to get there you must be willing to give it your all.”
Coach Lolla and Sanchez taught the former number one draft pick to not taking anything for granted. “One week you can be the starter and the next week your team might be signing a couple players who play your same position,” he said, “You have to be on your game at all times.”
Farrell believes that the 2015 season will be a breakout one for him. The second year defender said, “I actually talked to by two best friends, Paolo DelPiccolo and Brad Webb and told them that this needs to be a breakout year. Not necessarily scoring goals or anything crazy, but I need to be playing my best soccer of my life consistently all year to be able to get where I want to be.”
If Farrell continues to grow on the form that he has shown over the last two seasons, he could soon be a name that Jürgen Klinsmann is sure to include on his national squads. The defender shows promising speed, skill and strength that could see him become an elite MLS defender and perennial all star. Make sure to keep an eye on the Revs’ right back when New England takes the field for the 2015 season.
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