SAM DUNN: What’s the particular spirit of this USMNT World Cup squad? What is it about you guys that’s utterly unique compared to past US teams?
JESÚS FERREIRA: We all bring our own individual qualities to this team and we each have specific traits that blend together really well. We are a young group and we play with a lot of energy. I think it’s something that gives us an advantage. A lot of us have also come through the youth setup for the national team together, so we have experience playing together and learning one another’s games.
We also have a tremendous amount of trust in our coaches. Coach Gregg [Berhalter] puts together a great plan each match that is tailored to the specific opponent and it’s just on us to execute. We are all ready for this moment and ecstatic to be here.
SD: The nature of the atmosphere in Qatar promises to be something we’ve never seen before. What can you tell us about your role as a brand ambassador, and what are you looking forward to in that regard?
JF: Representing my country is a dream come true. It’s the goal of every player when they are first learning to play this game.
I’m fortunate enough to have great teammates and coaches that have helped me get to this level. I’ve been mentally and physically preparing for the tournament and having a brand like Cheribundi to support me has been phenomenal. As a brand ambassador, I will be promoting Cheribundi and sharing my story of how their products have set me up for success during these tough matches. I will also be working alongside their team to support their larger Fueling Future Champions Initiative — it’s a campaign that promotes youth sports and educates young athletes on the importance of holistic nutrition and recovery.
SD: What ultimately sold you on Cheribundi? How have your training and performance changed as a result?
JF: I’ve been using Cheribundi products since I first started playing with the National Team. I drink their juices after my training sessions to help my body recover and to help me sleep. They have a specific concentrate that is geared towards sleep and I take it most nights. It’s amazing and incredibly effective.
My schedule is rigorous with training, matches, gym sessions, and lots of travel. Since I started using Cheribundi, I noticed a shift in my body and energy: I feel more refreshed, less sore, and my overall immunity got better. This has also been the longest season of my pro career with the MLS season just finishing and going straight into the World Cup, so it’s even more important to pay attention to everything I’m putting in my body. I put a strong emphasis on using all-natural products like Cheribundi rather than anything with added sugars or chemicals.
SD: What’s the extra-special something that you bring to the pitch that distinguishes you from other attacking players?
JF: I always try to approach every match like it’s the last match that I’m going to play. It might sound like a simple mentality, but I attribute my success to it. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a cup final or a training session, I’m going to go as hard as I possibly can to make an impact.
SD: Which players and which nations are you most excited to have the chance to play against at the World Cup?
JF: I’m really excited to face off against all the teams in our group, to be honest. All three teams are talented and well-coached — it’s no small feat to qualify for the World Cup, so we can’t overlook anyone.
I’m especially excited to face off against England. So many of their guys play at the highest level in the Premier League, so I’m looking forward to pushing myself in that match. We will just try to take it one match at a time and will push our hardest to advance from the group.
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