Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Question and Answer with Kerry Zavagnin and Eric Kronberg

The great thing about living in Kansas City is I can finally go to little Wizard’s promos and talk to players. Tonight I went to a combined SPCA and Wizard’s event at a sports bar that was promoting dog night at the next Wizards home game. Wizard’s long time player turned Assistant Coach Kerry Zavagnin and injured backup goalkeeper extraordinaire Eric Kronberg were sitting around chatting. I took the opportunity to ask them both a couple questions.

As with every Major League Soccer player I’ve spoken with so far (sorry about the f’ed up audio Claude Simms), they were super nice.

Kerry Zavagnin

Do you like being an Assistant Coach over being a player?
That’ s a though call, very different. They both have their positives and negatives but coaching was something I wanted to go into and I knew that I wanted to go into it long before I finished playing. To do it in a place I’d played for so long made the transition much easier.

Are you putting in more hours now that you’re a coach?
Many more hours. The average player comes in at nine am and is out by one. Now I come in at 7am and sometimes I’m not out till seven. It’s a longer day.

Eric Kronberg

Eric Kronberg
Are you looking forward to the Open Cup?
Ya If I can play. I’m injured right now.

What did you pick up?
I tore my labrum and my rotator cup in my shoulder. I’m been out the last five months or so. I’m coming back in a month hopefully.

I don’t get as much news about you.
Ya you don’t hear as much about me right now, or ever.

Hey hey you were awesome in the Open Cup. I think a lot of fans appreciated your performance.
It was the first time I really got to play in a competitive match with a crowd in a long time. I played for Miami FC back in my rookie year and that was really the last time I played in front of a crowd. It’s been a couple of years. It was something special to me really getting my first time with the starting team.

Do you like being a backup goalkeeper?
Do I like it? Ummm. You’ve always got to put your time in. I was a backup in high school; I was a backup in college. I’m putting my time in and being patient. You’ve got to learn from the person above you and keep working at it.

Have you learned much from Kevin Hartman? What have you learned from him?
Oh Absolutely. It’s the little things like positioning wise and communication and little aspects of the game. Taking a step here instead of here.

I would think it would be a really intricate position because you play in such a small area of the field.
Kevin really simplifies what he does. A lot of keepers try and do too much. He really shows that you can take one step instead of three if it’s in the right spot. He knows what he’s doing, he’s been doing it for years and has all the records. It’s a great experience in my mind.