Photo Credit: John Todd/San Jose Earthquakes
American soccer lovers know the name of Cornell Glen. The Trinidad & Tobago World Cupper made a name for himself during his four year stint with MLS clubs like the MetroStars, FC Dallas, Columbus Crew, Colorado Rapids, LA Galaxy, and the San Jose Earthquakes.
The 31-year-old striker set the field on fire with his sublime attacking skills and was regarded one of the best players from T & T to play in MLS. Since then he has moved on to greener pastures and is now plying his trade with I-League side Shillong Lajong.
Glen had a memorable debut as he scored a brace on debut in away match against former champions Dempo SC. Interestingly, this was also their first win against the Golden Eagles in I-League. www.kickoffindia.com caught up with the prolific striker to talk about his past experiences with MLS and his stay in India so far.
Photo Credit: Shillong Lajong FC
How has your time in India been so far? How has your experience been, training with Shillong Lajong?
My time in India has been great so far. I’m really enjoying playing in Shillong. The guys has been really kind and friendly to me, which made my transition a lot easier.
Having played in a World Cup for T&T, in MLS amongst many big stages, what brought you to India?
I wanted a new challenge and the offer came up just at the right time. My good friend Denzil Theobald, who played with Dempo last year, helped me a lot with making the move.
What are you expecting from your stint here in India and how different would it be?
Not really expecting anything. Just came to do what I know to do best, which is give my all and try and score goals to help Shillong Lajong win games. It’s football and once you work hard and give 100% everyday you will get good results. It’s the same anywhere you go in the world, nothing different.
Coming on the back stints with in MLS with various teams, how was your experience there?
Was a great experience. I learned a lot in my stint there. But was really difficult at times. Injuries hampered me from doing as well as I know I could. Traveling and the weather is also a major factor, but I was grateful for the opportunity.
Which MLS side you loved playing the most in and why?
I enjoyed playing with every club I was with but San Jose Earthquakes is where I felt more at home and relaxed. I had a fun two years there and would of love to have really stayed longer.
Who would you rate as your best team-mate and the best or most feared opponent in MLS?
Amado Guevara was probably one of the best technical players I’ve played with in the MLS. His vision, passing, and skill on the ball sometimes amazed me. I never feared any team, but teams like LA Galaxy and NY Red Bulls are always difficult to play against.
You had a very short stint with LA Galaxy as well, which recently had the likes of Beckham playing for them. How does it feel now? You also scored a late brace for them against rivals Chivas USA. Must have been special?
It’s always good to score in a derby game. I really enjoyed that game. It is one that will go down in my archives of special moments.
MLS in now staging players like Beckham, Henry amongst a few big names and getting a lot of attention. How would you rate the American league?
The MLS is definitely growing rapidly. Not only are they attracting high profile players, but the standard of football is also improving. Give it a few more years and it will be competing with some of the best leagues in the world.
Photo Credit: Shillong Lajong FC
Playing in the World Cup would certainly have been special and as you said in an interview, everybody from T&T wanted to play in that and you were amongst the few lucky ones to have been able to play. So could you elaborate a little on the experience?
It was a great experience. One that words are hard to find to describe. But one I was grateful to be able to experience. Hope to one day live to tell my grandchildren about this great accomplishment.
You have had a good scoring record wherever you have gone. Is that something on your mind or scoring goals comes naturally to you? Would you be looking to replicate that?
I just love to score goals. I don’t think about it. I just go out and play hard. Give my all every time and when the chances arrives I try to take them. Sometimes you get lucky sometimes you don’t. That’s just football.