While 2013 was a tough season for Toronto FC, they appear to be gradually laying the foundations for greater success in the future. One of the core pieces of this is Toronto-born defender Ashtone Morgan.
Morgan began in the TFC Academy and is now a regular starter for the first team. He was named Canadian U-20 Player of the Year in 2011 (along with Amelia Pietrangelo) and has played for the national team, including six appearances during 2013.
We got the chance to speak to Morgan and ask him about the season in general, playing in his home city and who the worst-dressed player is in the Toronto FC locker room.
Blue Toro: Ashtone, I appreciate you taking the time to speak to us. Just to start off, I know this has been a frustrating season. What are your thoughts about it in general?
Ashtone Morgan: We’ve been really unlucky with lots of late goals, but we’re definitely progressing as a team and as a group. It’s positive, but of course, this game’s about winning and getting three points and unfortunately, we haven’t had that type of joy on our side much. However, it’s all coming along slowly for sure and teams better look out for us next year.
BT: Speaking of that, I know there’s been a lot of changes’, but there will be more stability here moving forward. What are your expectations for next season?
Morgan: As the coach has said, a few more pieces together with having a more core group of guys and I think we’re going to be good. We’re getting used to each other and I think those losses are going to turn into ties, the ties are going to turn into wins and then we’ll definitely be rolling!
BT: Coming from this area, what it’s like to play in the city where you grew up?
Morgan: It’s a great feeling. I was born and raised in Toronto and I get to play for my home club. All my friends and family are so happy. In fact, I think they’re more happy for it than I am, getting to see me play every week! After three years, it’s still kind of surreal to me.
BT: Do you have any opponents or individuals you get motivated to play against?
Morgan: Definitely the Chicago Fire, L.A. Galaxy and New York Red Bulls. For players, one of my favourites as a youngster was Thierry Henry, so to play against him now, again it’s kind of surreal. I look over and sometimes I have to snap out of it and remember I’m in a game and he’s my opponent now. It’s definitely crazy to play against him.
BT: As we discussed, it’s been a frustrating season. What do you do to get away from it all in your spare time?
Morgan: Well, if I’m going through a frustrating time, I go and see my pop. He’s my circle, he’s my everything. After training, I’ll go and talk to him and confide in him. He helps take the stresses away from me and be able to move on.
BT: What about any hobbies?
Morgan: For me it’s more about relaxing, clearing my head and enjoying my friends and family. I just like to have dinner with them all, nothing too crazy and just slow everything down.
BT: Can’t argue with that. Just finally, I’m going to ask you some quick-fire questions. Favourite food?
Morgan: Jerk chicken.
BT: Favourite TV show or Film?
BT: Dream woman?
BT: Amen to that! Highlight of your career so far?
Morgan: Solidifying my position with the team and playing for the national side.
BT: Funniest person in the locker room?
Morgan: Andrew Wiedeman and Jeremy Hall.
BT: Best dressed?
Morgan: Steven Caldwell.
BT: Worst dressed?
Morgan: I better not say! (Laughs.)
BT: You crash on a desert island, what three essentials do you need?
Morgan: Soccer ball, a lot of food and Beyonce!
BT: Ashtone, I appreciate your time. Enjoy the off-season.
You can follow Ashtone Morgan on Twitter @ashtone_m
If you have any tips or information about any of Toronto’s sports teams, please email me at Englishpaul@hotmail.co.uk
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- By English Paul
- November 5, 2013