Sporting Lisbon defender Oguchi Onyewu: Metz start good for my career

Sporting Lisbon defender Oguchi Onyewu says kicking off his European career with France's Metz was the right move for him.

Gooch didn't get on the pitch for last night's defeat in France.

“After all that experience, I still had the opportunity to come to Europe, and so I took it and came over here,” Onyewu told ussoccer.com. “As far as I know, there were a number of teams when I was younger tracking me outside of Metz, but for me the best fit personally ended up being Metz. I never second guessed the decision.”

Onyewu signed with FC Metz in March of 2002 but did not see playing time until almost a year later because of the team going into administration and Onyewu’s difficulty gaining clearance from the French league. When he made his debut on Jan. 19, 2003, it was as a substitute in a Coupe de France match against Bordeaux.

“When I came in the game, I came in as an attacking right back slash right midfielder,” he said. “Obviously back then I was a lot slimmer, and I played right back because that’s how I was formed as a professional. We ended up winning the game. I had a very strong debut, almost scored a goal, almost had an assist, and that’s where my professional career took off.”

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