AN INTERVIEW WITH CHICAGO FIRE/USA DEFENDER JOHNATHAN BORNSTEIN
USMNT and Chicago Fire defender, Jonathan Bornstein was born in Southern California to a Jewish father and Mexican mother. He’s earned 38 caps for the USMNT since making his debut a over a decade ago, scoring twice and was also included in the 2010 World Cup squad. He began his club career in the MLS with Chivas USA where he played for five years and captained the club during his last two seasons. He then moved to Mexico for 8 years playing for Tigres, Atlante and Querétaro before playing in Israel for one season with Maccabi Netanya. Jonathan is now back in the MLS playing for the Chicago Fire, where he recently signed a contract extension keeping him at the club until 2021.
His most legendary goal was the last-minute equalizer in October 2009 at RFK Stadium in Washington, DC against Costa Rica on the final game of World Cup Qualifying. The US's 2-2 draw sent Honduras to the 2010 World Cup.
Honduras after they had beaten El Salvador, 1-0, clinched a berth in the World Cup for the first time since 1982. A country that had been torn and split by a political problems had finally found a reason celebrate. Thousands of people emptied into the streets of the capital, Tegucigalpa, to celebrate the incrediable acheiment many hadn't seen in there life time.
You scored an equalising goal in 2009 for the USA, that send Honduras to the World Cup in nearly 40 years. How did that feel knowing what you had just done for an entire country?
Scoring the goal against Costa Rica definitely was a personal highlight in my career, but over the years I have had such a great outreach from Hondurans and I have been able to see first-hand just what a big impact that goal had. I felt extremely honoured I was able to help them get to the World Cup for the first time in 40 years. Soccer truly is the beautiful game and it showed greatly in this instance.
Currently playing for the Chicago Fire, how does the game differ after taking some time to play in other countries?
I don’t know that the game differs at all, but my experiences abroad have helped me grow as a person and a player. I really enjoy trying to use what I have learned and helping younger players to become better quicker.
What was your favourite moment of your career?
My favourite moment of my career is representing USA in the World Cup.
Any advice to the younger players coming up through the ranks or wanting to play football professionally?
The advice I would give any younger players is to focus on three core values: Discipline, hard work, and being a good teammate.