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Last night I had the honor to meet Tim Howard, a USMNT, Everton, Manchester United, New York Red Bulls/MetroStars, and Colorado Rapids legend. He holds the amazing record of most saves in a single game in the World Cup. Tim helped the Colorado Rapids beat the New York Red Bulls last night (August 31st) in a 2-0 game.
This was a very important game for Howard, as it was his last in the arena it all started in, Red Bull Arena. Howard played for the MetroStars (before they rebranded to the Red Bulls in 2006) and instantly became a star, winning the 2001 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year.
However, before even all the fame, Tim went through his fare of issues. In 6th grade Tim was diagnosed with Tourette syndrome and obsessive compulsive disorder. This hasn't held him back though, in fact, it had made him stronger and more appreciative of the opportunities he's received. In 2001, Tim was named "the most notable individual with Tourette Syndrome around the world".
Howard had made success everywhere he has been. This includes Manchester United and Everton, two of the Premier League's most prestigious clubs. In his first game at Manchester United he saved a penalty to help them win the Community Shield back in 2003. He also scored a goal for Everton, as his kick traveled across the pitch, around 101 yards, and it bounced over the Bolton Wanderers goalkeeper, Adam Bodgan. Tim didn't celebrate the goal as he instead respect Bogdan, whom he felt bad for.
Now, back to the start. After the game Tim was doing his interviews, after a stellar performance, keeping the clean sheet. I had the chance of being the last interview of the night, I was blown away by the fact I was feet away from a man who has done so much for our country. In my word with Tim, who couldn't have been more respectful, I asked him about coming back to Red Bull Arena, and not just coming back to play in the game, but to win it, I was curious on how he was feeling!
"I feel great after the win. This is my home, this is where it all started. It's a special moment for me, to play in front of my friends and family. And after 22 years it feels like a really great place to start winding down my career."
On a personal note, I would like to thank everyone who made this night special such as Jordan Angeli, Hannah Jurich, Tim Howard, Robin Casey, Jonathan Lewis, and everybody who I met in my first time in the press box!