Ex-Arsenal youth Zakuani excited about new chapter with Portland Timbers

Steve Zakuani admits he is extremely excited about the next chapter of his soccer career with the Portland Timbers.

Steve Zakuani admits he is extremely excited about the next chapter of his soccer career with the Portland Timbers.

The 25-year old winger, formerly with Arsenal’s youth academy, finds himself in Oregon after spending the past five years with Cascadia rivals Seattle Sounders.

Zakuani reunites with his former Akron Zips coach Caleb Porter at JELD-WEN Field and he is looking forward to again playing under the Timbers boss.

“It’s been fun. Obviously when I came here I was looking forward to playing with the players in this group and working with Caleb Porter once again,” he told the Oregonian.

“Coming here and seeing how he works, bringing back memories from college, it’s been exciting.

“I’m integrating into the team right now, I’m getting used to doing things the Portland way on and off the pitch.

“It’s been an easy integration. I know him (Porter) from before and I think he’s grown a lot as a coach, for the better and obviously I’ve grown a lot as a player since college. That was one of the things that made me excited to come here, the chance to work with him again, because I know he can get the best out of me.”

As for the inevitable question regarding the Timbers’ rivalry with the Sounders, Zakuani insists he is only focusing on his new club.

“I spent some great years in Seattle, five very good years, but things come to an end and this is a new beginning, a new chapter,” he added.

“Now I play for Portland and I’m going to give everything for Portland. My only focus while I’m in Portland is to give everything for this team and this jersey and this city. I don’t think about Seattle anymore, that chapter is closed.”

 
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