March 6th, 2013 by Michael Orr
Troy Perkins was traded to Montreal for Donovan Ricketts on August 7, 2012. Nearly seven months later, the goalkeeper is back in Portland as the Impact take on the Timbers for the only time this season. Perkins spoke to the assembled media yesterday at Jeld-Wen Field, which included NASN Portland, the Oregonian’s Geoffrey Arnold and Phillippe Germain of Soccer Plus.
Q: How are things going for you up there?
Perkins: Good. Happy to be there to be honest. Very European style, very European atmosphere around the club. I’m thrilled.
Q: When you say European style, what do you mean by that?
Perkins: The overall mentality, the way they manage players and manage the team, and the expectations. So it’s good.
Q: How much has it meant to have a training camp and a pre-season with Montreal?
Perkins: Not even the pre-season is significant. It’s the fact that when we went to Italy last year, as a team, it really bonded the team together as a group. The core of the group of guys who were there was really solidified.
Q: What have you told your teammates about Portland and playing here?
Perkins: Not a whole lot. We witnessed a pretty good idea of what Seattle was going to be and coming here it’s the same idea. Less people but they’re right on top of you so it feels the same. It’s going to be a game to manage the atmosphere and manage the emotion.
Q: It must’ve been a good confidence boost, going on the road and getting a result.
Perkins: A little bit. It gives us the mentality that we can get a result. We’re not the same team we were last year when we had some trouble on the road. But then again, that’s in the past and we have to be able to put that behind us and come here and get a result.
Q: It must be funny to be here and stay in a hotel.
Perkins: Oh yeah. I stayed at that hotel for a week before so it’s a little surreal.
Q: Is the game plan the same as it was in Seattle? 4-1-4-1, play it safe and see if you can hit back on the counter?
Perkins: A little bit. The 4-1-4-1 was a little bit of a shock to us, too. We don’t know. We’re able to play several different ways. We’ve got the personnel to do a lot of different things. We’re all good footballers and we’re able to do whatever we can.
Q: You said you didn’t tell much about the town, but were you asked?
Perkins: Not really. No one really asked too much. I told them it would probably rain – here we go, it’s raining now. We were getting on the bus and they were saying, ‘there are some weird people in Seattle.’ I said, ‘Yeah, but when you get to Portland it’s even worse.’
Q: What kind of reception are you expecting on Saturday? Are you going to give the Timbers Army a wave?
Perkins: Oh yeah, of course. They’re great people and a great fan base. This is something special, it really is. My wife’s jealous that I’m here without her, so it’s tough. Emotionally it’s tough outside the field. But on the field, I’m thrilled to be where I am.
Q: When you came to Portland you talked a lot about getting your family here and getting settled down. Have you gotten settled in Montreal? Does it feel like home yet?
Perkins: Yeah it does, it really does. Even coming here this soon after the trade, it doesn’t feel like I belong here anymore. Everything’s back in Montreal. I’ve grown accustomed to the lifestyle. My kid loves it there. He’s learning French and it’s a lot of fun.