Connor Lade certainly is in demand these days. Tuesday he was loaned from the Red Bulls to the Cosmos. Saturday night at 7, the defender-midfielder could make his Cosmos debut against the Carolina RailHawks at Hofstra's Shuart Stadium.
And Sunday, he will represent the Red Bulls, though he is with the Cosmos, in the MLS Homegrown Player Game in Portland as part of MLS All-Star Game festivities. "It's going to be a little whirlwind, but it'll be fun," Lade said.
What does the Homegrown Player Game mean to you?
It's a great honor. I'm excited to get out there and show what I've got. They're celebrating the youth system in America generating a lot more homegrown talent throughout MLS academies. The talent is only getting better and their future is definitely very bright.
How much did you know about the loan?
We've been talking about it the past couple of weeks, maybe even a month or two, exploring options. When this option came up, it was very enticing to pursue it. We put some feelers out to different teams. When the Cosmos said they were interested, we worked things out. They thought that this would be the best fit for me.
Did you talk to anyone beforehand?
I talked with Jimmy Mulligan, whom I went to college [St. John's] with for four years. He had great things to say. He really enjoys it here. I also talked to Gio and he explained to me the type of environment they run here and what kind of team they are. I had experience coming out here playing the Open Cup, so I was familiar with the type of team they were and the quality that they have here. I was very excited that they would open the door for me.
How tough was it not getting playing time with the Red Bulls?
It's very difficult when you come to training every day and you're working hard. It was getting to the point where I needed to go somewhere and have a new challenge, just refresh myself and get back to more confidence. Hopefully that will translate into great, successful times here. It's always frustrating when you're not playing. It's obviously a very tough team to break into. We've got a lot of world-class players.
Being at St. John's for four years, this isn't a foreign area to you.
I'm very familiar with the area. I'm just excited to be back around here. I've already run into some people from St. John's. It seems you can throw a rock and hit 10 of them.
What do you want to attain with the Cosmos?
I just want to give my all every day for the club and continue developing my overall game, become more consistent. I would like to become a regular and help the team in any way possible. I feel really fortunate they gave me this opportunity, so I want to pay it back.
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