Five questions with Sean Franklin
On a LA Galaxy team sheet that has seen at least one change every game this season but one, Sean Franklin has been the lone constant. Franklin is the only Galaxy player to play every minute of the club’s first 17 regular season matches in 2012. The right back is in his fifth season with the Galaxy after being taken by the club in the first round (fourth overall) of the 2008 MLS SuperDraft. Franklin is a California native, who also played his college soccer at Cal State Northridge. Franklin immediately made himself a Galaxy fixture, capturing MLS Rookie of the Year and Galaxy Defender of the Year honors in 2008. Since then, Franklin has been a steady force in the back and coming forward for LA. In addition to his defensive abilities, Franklin also showed a knack for goals in 2011, scoring the first four goals of his MLS career while adding three assists. While he hasn’t scored thus far in 2012, his stability has been a welcomed presence in a defense that has used seven different starting combinations.
We caught up with Sean to talk about the team’s performance, taking care of his body, his pregame routine and more…
PHOTOS: Sean Franklin
What has been the key to your consistency this season?
“First and foremost, just being healthy. I’ve tried to take care of my body as much as I can, if I have a knock I’ll see the trainers. I’ve been trying to eat the right things. I think that’s been the reason why I’ve been able to play every game so far this year. This is probably one of the first years I’ve been pretty healthy so I’m happy about that.”
What is your routine like on a gameday? What do you do to prepare?
“Most of the day I just kind of chill out. If I haven’t gotten my hair cut, I’ll get it during that day or the day before, and then I always get my car washed. Those are kind of the things I like to do. I’ll even, sometimes a little bit before, maybe an hour before the game I’ll pick out what I’m going to wear, just so I don’t have to worry about it, so I’m not rushing, so I can focus on getting ready and getting to the game.”
What did you guys do better in the recent shutouts that you can build on going forward?
“Everyone worked hard for 90 minutes. In the beginning of the year there was moments in the game where we weren’t working as a team and even before our two-week break, you could tell our team was catching their stride even though we weren’t getting the results we wanted, we knew we were right there. We came back from our break and we’re on a three-game winning streak (June 17-23), hoping to have another win this weekend. Everyone is buying into hard work and playing for each other.”
What will it be like for the team to get Omar Gonzalez back at some point in the near future?
“It’s huge, Omar is a great player. It’s unfortunate that he got hurt when he was just catching his stride, to have him back in the lineup will be a great asset. He’s a beast in the back and also it will be nice to have him on some set pieces to get a couple headers in from David [Beckham]. I’m looking forward to him coming back, I know the team is. He’s been training well and we know he’ll be back out there soon.”
Where can you improve both as a team and yourself as an individual?
“As a team, I would say just finishing more goals. We’ve had plenty of chances in games, even when we weren’t playing as well, we still had opportunities to finish teams off maybe four, five to zero. I thought last weekend (June 23 against Vancouver) we easily could have won the game 7-nothing; we still won the game 3-0 which is good, but I think as a team, maybe score some more goals. Defensively just keep focusing on not turning the ball over in bad spots and I think if we shore that up we’re a pretty dangerous team. For myself, just being more consistent contributing on the attacking end. Making some better crosses, passes in the final third to set up goals for the team and defensively just being sharp, talking to the back line and Josh [Saunders] and the rest of the players and making sure that I’m doing my job as well.”
This article was originally published in the LA Galaxy Gameday Program. Be sure to pick up one of the new Gameday Programs, filled with exclusive content, match info and fun facts, the next time you're at The Home Depot Center for a Galaxy home match!