Fan Q&A with Juninho
Juninho joined fans from around the globe in a live chat online on Tuesday, February 21. For those that missed it, read what he had to say about returning to the Galaxy, his goals for 2012 and the club's upcoming CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal series against Toronto FC.
Comment From E. Gonzalez: What are your goals for the 2012 season?
Juninho: I want to continue what I've done the past two years, to score goals and to help the team compete in the tournaments this year.
Comment From Sean V: What are you thoughts on potentially lining up this season with [Marcelo] Sarvas in the midfield?
Juninho: It's great because he's Brazilian and there will be great communication between us. I think he was a great signing by the Galaxy because he's a very strong player. With him, we'll be strong again this year and positioned to win.
Comment From Victoria: What is different about training with the Galaxy as opposed to your club in Brazil?
Juninho: It's very different. Over there they train in the mornings and in the evenings, and here Galaxy train just one time per day but it's very rigorous. It takes some getting used to.
Comment From Guy in ACB: Which would you like to win more this coming year? Defending of the MLS Cup title or at least a Champions League final appearance?
Juninho: As a professional we have to strive for both of them. We're paid to win our games so it's hard to choose one over the other.
Comment From Stacey E: What's your favorite thing about LA Galaxy?
Juninho: I really like my teammates here.
Comment From Spencer K.: Juninho, do you have any pre-game rituals?
Juninho: I just concentrate. I don't really have superstitions.
Comment From Luis Martel: Juninho, who is your favorite Brazilian player of all time?
Juninho: [laughs] I have to think more about it.
Comment From Guest: My daughter wants to know how often do you change your cleats? Or do you have a special pair?
Juninho: I don't change them very frequently but my favorite pair are the yellow adidas ones because they have a Brazilian theme.
Comment From erik: I can't wait to see you guys repeat as MLS champs!
Juninho: Thank you. I'm very proud of that moment because it was a must-win game. And even though we played in The Home Depot Center it was in front of a lot of opposing fans. I'm just very proud and happy. Afterwards I celebrated by going out to dinner with my wife.
Comment From Jordon: Juninho, welcome back!! It's amazing to have you back in L.A. My question is, which stadium do you enjoy playing in the most and why? Excluding The Home Depot Center.
Juninho: I like Red Bull Arena and CenturyLink Field because I like playing in front of big crowds
Comment From Guest: When are we going to start seeing some samba on the pitch?
Juninho: I have to score first! I hope you guys enjoy my samba!
Comment From Philip: Juninho, are you going to miss having Chris Birchall with you in the midfield? Also how does it feel to have David Beckham back for another 2 seasons?
Juninho: For Birchall, I'm very sad. We're a family here and for him not to return is a loss, like Donovan Ricketts too. David is a great person and a great player. It's great to have him back for two more years because he's a great example for the younger players and he's a great professional.
From Christo Kotoyan: How will the team have to change the way they perform with the absence of Omar Gonzalez?
Juninho: It's going to be very tough because Omar is a great player and he's been here a long time so we've gotten used to playing with him on our side, but I think that the young players have a chance to support the team. I think we'll still be strong.
Comment From Omar: Who is the toughest player you've played against in MLS?
Juninho: Graham Zusi from Sporting KC… We have similar functions and he's a player that can think very fast and is very hard to get the ball from.
Comment From Sandra: What do you in your free time?
Juninho: I talk to my wife and my family back in Brazil. I like to read magazines and I go online to read the news in Brazil.
Comment From Jordon: Hey Juninho, who would you say is the biggest comedian on the team?
Juninho: Landon [Donovan]! He's always making jokes and messing with the rookies and it's very funny.
Comment From Gibson: What is your favorite city in America other than L.A.?
Juninho: I like New York because it's very different. It's a city that never stops. Even at night everyone's out.
Comment From Me: What was your favorite moment in 2011 besides winning the MLS Cup?
Juninho: Professionally, MLS Cup was my favorite. It had been a long time since the Galaxy had won. Personally, getting married was the best.
Comment From Henry: Who do you mold your game after, who inspires your style of playing?
Juninho: I like Xabi Alonso from Real Madrid. Playing against him last year had a different sort of sentiment. I used to watch him alot so when he was out on the field. I found myself admiring him.
Comment From Yessi: What jersey number will you be wearing?
Comment From Arden: How do you train yourself to become physically fit? Any Tips?
Juninho: This year I started training again on January 4 on my own. It's good to have a month of rest but I have to change my mindset back to training hard. That helps keep me in shape.
Comment From Someone in CA: Where are you right now, your location?
Juninho: In a hotel room in Tucson
Comment From Jéssica Pereira: Juninho, how does it feel having great recognition from the fans of the LA Galaxy, in particular the ACB?
Juninho: I have a great love for my fans. As soon as I came in they supported me very well. It's them that I work hard for.
Comment From Din: What do you miss most from Brazil that you can not find here in L.A.?
Juninho: My family being far away. Everything else I need I can find in L.A.
Comment From Ken: If you could take one skill from one of your fellow galaxy members and put it in your arsenal, what would it be and from whom?
Juninho: I want to cross the ball like David, run like Landon and score goals like Edson and Keane.
Comment From Alex: What is your favorite American food to eat?
Juninho: In n Out burgers and Benihana
From Luciano: Good To have you back, and how do you see the midfield line up for the first game of the season?
Juninho: [laughs] Ask Bruce … I just arrived so you'll have to ask Bruce.
Comment From Bobby in Bay Area: How much focus does the team have concerning CCL?
Juninho: Everyone wants it. We want to win. No other MLS team has won it and it would be a very important tournament to win and then compete in the Club World Cup and represent the United States there.
Juninho: I would like to thank all the Galaxy the fans, and all the people that like this sport here. I really like this organization and feel that this is my second home. Good night everyone!