081413_isi_brooksjohn_130814fek_bih_usa_58 Fedja Krvavac
Direct from Sarajevo

ASN Exclusive: John Brooks On Why He Chose the U.S.

John Brooks spoke to American Soccer Now just after his debut effort in the United States' win over Bosnia. He said he had lots of jitters, and appreciated Jurgen Klinsmann's relentless pursuit.
BY Graham Ruthven Posted
August 14, 2013
7:21 PM
SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina—John Brooks admitted he had a case of the pre-game jitters before making his U.S. men’s national team debut in the enthralling 4-3 win over Bosnia in Sarajevo.

The Hertha Berlin defender started for the U.S. in Sarajevo, and the back four started off slowly by conceding two first-half goals before providing the platform for a comeback, in which the visitors netted four times in the space of just 31 minutes.

Speaking after the game, Brooks told ASN why he’d chosen to play for the U.S. and describing how he felt before kick-off.

"The USA wanted me to play for them more than anyone else, and the coach (Klinsmann) being here meant something to me,” the Berlin-born player said.

“I’m now delighted to have made my first appearance. It’s a great experience for me to play at the international level and it was a good game to play, although maybe not so much for a defender,” he laughed. “I’m nervous before every game, but today I was especially nervous. I really wanted to impress. I always want to win and that’s where nerves come from. But at this level you want to win that bit extra, so yeah I was nervous.”

Brooks started alongside Stoke City’s Geoff Cameron, someone the 20-year-old feels helped him through his debut display.

He said: “Center back is where I play best so to start there with Geoff was great. I talked with him before the game and a lot during it. He’s someone who’s good to communicate with and I like playing beside him. He helped me a lot and I think I helped him a bit too."

“He’s not the only one I’ve got on with. I've played with Terrence Boyd at Hertha and he’s a good friend. It’s always nice when you know people when you go into a new team, and he’s made it easier for me coming into the USA."

“It’s a very easy team to get along with. We’re all good friends and nobody has a problem with anyone else. I think you can see that on the pitch. It makes a difference.”

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