Stu Holden: Now Operating On All Cylinders

The Shin Guardian got about five minutes to speak with Stu Holden upon his return to the United States from Manchester on Wednesday.

Here’s what the prospective World Cup player had to say.

TSG: Stu, thanks for the time. How are you?

Holden: "I feel I'm back to full fitness."

Stu Holden: I’m good. Back in Houston, relaxing a little bit.

TSG: Been a pretty hectic few weeks for you?

SH: Yeah…towards the end of my rehab now. I was just making sure I got back healthy. I’ve been training for the last three or so weeks.

I’m feeling really good. Now it’s just time to see the family, relax a little bit, but still maintain fitness.

But I’m looking forward to camp on Saturday.

TSG: We’ll be brief because I know you have a jammed schedule.

First, congratulations on the selection. You came on swiftly after your Gold Cup exploits.

What’s the first thing you did when you learned you were selected for “the 30?”

SH: I was actually flying overseas. It was of course nice to be selected for the 30. Obviously, it’s only half the battle.

Now you have to go into camp, prepare yourself,  prove your fit and worthy of a spot on the plane to South Africa.

It’s obviously a good feeling to be part of the initial group, but now the real work starts on Saturday in Princeton.

TSG: How was the message delivered to you? Did you just get an email or did one of the coaches talk to you?

SH: Well, we get emails from the head manager of US Soccer.

Every time you get that email, even if you are expecting the call or not, it still feels like the first time.

It’s a great feeling when you open the email and it tells you “Congratulations, You’ve been selected…”

Now I just can’t wait to get started.

TSG: A lot of experts say experience is critical at the World Cup.

For example, DaMarcus Beasley will be potentially be participating in his 3rd World Cup.

How do you react to that statement, given the fact that your time with the senior squad is limited to just about a year.

SH: Experience in any game is helpful. You are only get experience in a World Cup when you get that opportunity.

I’m going to take what experience I have from the Gold Cup, from the Olympics and from my time in the Premier League and use that.

Hopefully If I’m on that plane to South Africa, I’ll be able to go into that tournament knowing I’ve played in some big games in the past and use my experience that to help me in the World Cup.

TSG: Given your fitness levels, are you back to full fitness? How would you rate yourself?

SH: I feel I’m back to full fitness.

Obviously, you don’t get the same game fitness, just doing running and sprints, but I played at the game at the end of the season and although it was only as a substitute I still felt I was up for the pace of game.

My touch was good and my leg was feeling good, most importantly.

So, I’m excited. The last couple of weeks, you know, have been tough in terms of rehabbing and really putting in a lot of extra effort to get myself to where I am now.

I’m really happy with how my leg feels and I couldn’t be heading to camp on a better note.

TSG: Thanks Stu. Give us a little more on how your charity is progressing.

SH: I’ve been working on Holden’s Heroes for awhile. It’s a personal charity of mine that’s dedicated to bringing happiness to children that are going through tough battles. It’s been a passion of mine since I got involved with fighting cancer.

My dad went through a similar fight. Now that it’s coming into some final stages, I’m excited about turning the charity into something big.

TSG: Thanks for your time Stu. We look forward to seeing you in camp and then seeing you on the World Cup Squad. Thank you.

SH: Cool; thanks.

14 responses to this post.

  1. TSG, you’re so classy. It was a respectably brief interview. Stu seems like a genuine dude. Get some rest Stu, you’ve got push it like never before. Cheers to another great interview!


  2. Posted by Antonio H. on 2010/05/13 at 6:18 AM

    I feel like an email is so…..informal. A phone call would be better imo, unless the guy doesn’t pick up.


  3. Posted by Dougs on 2010/05/13 at 7:00 AM

    Nice job with the interviews. I’m at at a loss as to why so few of your colleagues are doing the same given that we now know the 30 and are weeks from the WC. Thanks Matthew and keep up the strong work.


  4. Posted by dude on 2010/05/13 at 7:11 AM

    This is why Kljestan shouldn’t make the plane. (By the way, please don’t do a Kljestan interview, he’s such a tool in real life).


    • Posted by matthewsf on 2010/05/13 at 7:33 AM

      I did a Kljestan interview at camp. It’s available under interviews above–I wanted to ask him about his pitch theatrics.

      I actually reached out via twitter for a follow-up to which he replied “No thanks.”

      He is the only player that has turned down a direct request for an interview from The Shin Guardian in the 10 months we’ve been in action.

      Stu’s agent is class and Stu was more than willing to answer more questions.


      • Posted by BW on 2010/05/13 at 5:01 PM

        wow….hollywood is only player to turn down an interview request? what a dick. i’m way more impressed with the guys that seem genuinely humble, down to earth and recognize their ability to influence people for the good of game and take the time to reach out and do that.


  5. Good stuff from Stu. I’d love to hear more from him about life in England, the transition to the Premier League, etc., but I imagine he’s a little busy right now:-)


    • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2010/05/13 at 8:28 AM

      The culture shock for a Scotsman living south of the border isn’t that big!


      • Heh, good point. He’s been stateside for a good 13 years, however, I’m pretty sure it’s rather different than Houston:)


  6. Posted by Joe on 2010/05/13 at 7:55 AM

    very interesting about the e-mails… Would not have expected that


  7. Posted by Bwfc on 2010/05/13 at 8:58 AM

    Over the moon we’ve got him for at least another year. He only played a couple of games before he picked up his injury but he didn’t half make an impression. His first was in a 4-0 defeat away at Tottenham, he was the only player worthy of a pat on the back. His deliveries are second to none! I think he’s got a massive future ahead of him i just hope it lies here at Bolton!


  8. […] Maurice Edu,  Alejandro Bedoya, Stu Holden, Benny Feilhaber, Jermaine Jones, Michael Bradley, Brek Shea, Clint […]


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