Jump to content

Ante Jazic Interview


Recommended Posts


Ante Jazic has become an Angeleno


Ante Jazic says he's in L.A. to stay. "If I get traded, I'm retiring."

Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images

Ante Jazic is a Canadian native who grew up in Nova Scotia. Due partly to his Croatian heritage, the defender has had a varied professional career in Europe, playing with Croatian clubs NK Hrvatski Dragovoljac and Hajduk Split, Austria's Rapid Vienna and Russia's FC Kuban Krasnodar before joining the Galaxy in the middle of last year.

It was a reunion of sorts for Jazic, with Frank Yallop, who had coached him with Canada's national team. Jazic is now a regular starter with Los Angeles, finding his groove with the team and the town.

Los Angeles Soccer News: It’s your second year. How are you feeling? What’s different so far?

Ante Jazic: We finally got our first win, so I think that’s a positive. I think in our first two results, the one against Houston was decent, but we let ourselves down against Dallas. Now this one against Chivas USA really kick-starts our season. It’s too bad we have a break now, but we're excited about the upcoming games for sure, to carry some momentum in.

LASN: You seemed especially energized against Chivas USA – any particular motivation?

Jazic: I don’t know if I was especially motivated. Everyone was. We knew we had to get a result, so I think everyone gave an extra effort to get the result. There was a lot of pressure on us, with losing the Dallas game. Everyone came out strong and we played well and got the result we needed.

LASN: Last season, your visa situation kept you from playing with the team for a while. What difference has it made for you to be able to start the year with the team and play the whole season?

Jazic: It’s nice to have a whole training camp to get to know the players. Last year, I came in and basically trained for a few weeks and couldn’t play in any games for a few more weeks. This year, I’ve had all of preseason and the exhibition matches to get fit. The team has gelled together and hopefully the results in the future will show that.

LASN: How about working with your backline and midfield – do you feel more confident this year and if so, how so?

Jazic: Obviously, being here for seven or eight months helps. Tyrone Marshall has been playing beside me, so we’ve developed some chemistry. Coming in as a new player to an established team is always difficult. Now I know the tendencies of other players, the midfielders, the strikers and the runs they want to make. It’s easier on me. We have a lot of good guys in the locker room and a lot of good soccer players. I’m just excited for this year, to see how we’re going to finish the season.

LASN: Mo Johnston, who is coaching Toronto FC, the new MLS team in Canada said recently that the players there were at a disadvantage because they didn’t get matches broadcast over there and weren’t familiar with opponents. Since you didn’t watch much MLS before you joined the league, is that a valid issue?

Jazic: I don’t know if that’s a major issue. It does help if you can scout the teams you’re playing against, but lets be honest – a lot of players don’t watch MLS games unless they have to, like when they’re scouting the team. I’ll watch the games, but I’m not going to think about when I’m playing them. I watch the game for the sake of watching the game, not watching the player I’m playing against. It’s an advantage to know a player’s tendencies, but if you have good players and a good team, I think it’s not that important who you’re playing against.

With Toronto, they’re a first-year team and they’re going to have growing pains, which they’re already suffering through, but they have good players there. They’ll straighten that out. I’m not sure if watching MLSLive is going to help them that much, because I know a lot of the players on that team and I know a lot of them don’t watch soccer tha much anyway.

LASN: Have any of those players called you up and said that they didn’t realize that MLS was such a hard league?

Jazic: I speak with quite a few of the guys. A lot of the guys who played in England said they didn’t realize the travel involved. They weren’t used to getting on four and five hour flights to different time zones, but they’ve been impressed with the standard of play. Like I said, they’ve been going through some growing pains, but they had a wonderful crowd against Kansas City. They’re going to be tough to play against eventually, once they get their team cemented. Right now, they’re still wheeling and dealing. They’ll be ok. It’d be a shame not to have a good team in Toronto with those fans they have.

LASN: Would you ever be tempted to join up if Nova Scotia got an MLS team?

Jazic: (laughing) Never. I’m not going to leave Los Angeles. I’ve already said, if I get traded, I’m retiring. I’ve already started taking pool maintenance and gardening classes.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...