Friday, January 23, 2009

This Tally Hall seems a mighty fine fellow

New Dynamo keeper Tally Hall (I LOVE that name) penned a farewell letter to the fans of Esbjerg FB, which is pretty astounding seeing as how the guy never played for the first team in two years there. (As my friend V would say, Mad Rizzzpekt to Mister3d for finding this letter.)

Reading it over, I'm struck by the way the letter just drips character. This is a guy who is just waiting for exactly the right opportunity. Having never seen him play, but knowing that any Herrmann Award semifinalist must possess SOME skills, this is looking more and more like a typical signing from the proven talent firm of Luck, Canetti and Kinnear, that is rat own!

As for his reference about songs, El Batallon, Pulse and Texian Army, I think the boy needs a proper welcome next month. What do you think?

As for Playtherapy's gauntlet throw down in the previous post, it's Game On. Mister3d is handling the Ngwenya angle, leaving me the center back signing.

But who will get to take credit for the Dynamo Park deal going through? As I seem to have the floor here, HEY!, that stadium deal is all but done!

(Do I still have to get the CB?)

Here's the letter:

Looking Back
Af: Tally Hall
Tally Hall letter her sit hjerte, inden han i næste uge forlader EfB.
As I take a look back at my two years in Esbjerg, I must admit I have mixed emotions. I came to the club with grand goals and expectation of success. I quickly realized that I needed to adapt and improve more than I first thought.

The first six months were very difficult for this reason. It was hard to find the rhythm of speed and position. Because football was not as easy as I wanted it to be, I kept thinking of all the things that were better in the USA. A lot of my sentences started with, "In the US..."

After six months I realized I needed to focus on where I was, instead of looking for all the things that were better at home. I began to think of the things that were different and interesting and therefore I started to appreciate and enjoy them.

My play on the field started improving after the first year and I felt confident that I could step on the field and succeed in the SAS Liga. I believe that this is about the time that Lars Winde started playing his best football as well. From the little I understand reading the sports section I started realizing how much pressure Lars was under from the fans. I should be the person who sees the most faults in his game and the fact is, there are not that many. He is extremely agile and everyday I watch him make saves I think are untouchable. His decision making for distribution, especially with his throw, is better than average and sometimes absolutely fantastic. With crosses, every time he catches it, punches it, or just barely touches the ball with his finger tips, he prevents a good scoring opportunity.

And I would like to bring up something, Peter Schmeichel's first goal against him with Manchester United. A completely mistimed cross. Even the best keeper in the world makes mistakes. Is Lars the perfect goalkeeper? No, but my professional opinion is he is a damn good goalkeeper and Esbjerg is lucky to have him.

My goals were pretty big but I thought they were doable when I came here. I wanted to play well enough for EfB to be on USA's Olympic team, I wanted to be EfB's starter before my 23rd birthday and I wanted to be looked upon as a motivational and inspirational leader on the field and locker room. Of course I had smaller goals that could be improved during practice, but until I am perfect (which is impossible), those wont be accomplished. So, it would be very easy for me to look back on my time in Esbjerg and say that it was a complete failure. I still have not played in a SAS Liga game, or any other game that mattered for the first team, I was cut from my Olympic team and I cant really lead on the field when I am not there. But I refuse to look at my Esbjerg experience as a failure.

The office, coaching staff, fans and my teammates have made this experience an overall success in my life. My teammates have become my extended family here in Denmark and will always hold a special place in my heart. They have made it easy for me as an outsider to feel like I belong. On the field the mentality is always intense but reasonable. Mistakes may be made but solutions are discussed and worked upon in a professional manner. This helps more than you can imagine.

The coolest thing I was able to experience were the fans. American fans do not have the tradition of singing team songs or individual songs. So I thought it was really cool when the fans started singing songs during the game and you can imagine my surprise during warm up when fans started singing my name. I am pretty sure I told everyone I know back home that the fans had sung my name.

The fans and people of Esbjerg have always taken extra steps to make my wife and I feel appreciated and welcome. My wife and I have come to call Esbjerg home and we are sad to leave what we now love. We have found lifelong friends and we have learned things about the world we would never have known. We hope the people we met enjoyed the experience as much as we have. This city has been fantastic to us. Thank you so much.


playtherapy said...

Wow! With this humility, Talley may learn a lot from wizened Onstad.

Martek said...

Methinks he might be maybe TOO nice a fellow. Hopefully, a few instances of Super Canuck in his face will toughen him up.