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U.S. MEN'S NATIONAL TEAM

February 11, 2009
“IT WAS AWESOME”
Donovan, Hejduk laud atmosphere


Landon Donovan relishes the big game atmosphere that was evident at Columbus Crew Stadium Wednesday.
Landon Donovan relishes the big game atmosphere that was evident at Columbus Crew Stadium Wednesday.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
COLUMBUS, Ohio---Don’t think the United States players noticed their fans on Wednesday night at Crew Stadium? They did.

“It was awesome,” said Landon Donovan. “When it started, it was loud (for both teams). But as the game went on we saw it was a lot more American.”

Donovan said the atmosphere helps elevate him and the team.

“It’s as big a game as we play,” said Donovan who is currently on loan from the Los Angeles Galaxy with Bayern Munich.

“Regardless of where I am and what I am doing, when we play this team, I am ready,” he said.

Frankie Hejduk, who plays for the hometown Columbus Crew, was the darling of the home crowd, and repaid the favor by running over to the stands at the end of the game and tossing his jersey into the crowd.

“It was crazy like it was supposed to be,” he said. “If you’ve never been to a soccer game, this is the one to go to.”

U.S. Coach Bob Bradley also noticed the fans . “Our fans are really loyal fans, wearing the red, white and blue. That’s something that the players, coaches, everybody appreciates. “

The mix of the crowd also impressed Bradley.” It’s also important to say that there was a lot of green, red and white in the stadium tonight and I think that also is special. The idea that we still feel like it’s a pro-USA crowd, we feel their passion and support, but at the same time there are Mexican fans, Mexican-Americans who have the passion for their team, it only makes the atmosphere better."
   
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