Matt Turner reflects on “long year”
Matt Turner appeared to have a storybook year in 2021, but his dreams turned to nightmares on Tuesday night.
The MLS Goalkeeper of the Year couldn’t save a penalty as the NYCFC advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals.
Whether for club or country, Turner dominated most of 2021. He recorded a 9-1-2 record in 12 starts for the United States, including five shutouts in six Gold Cup games. Concacaf 2021. Turner was named the tournament’s top goalie and won the top eleven title en route to the Gold Cup title.
In MLS, he has 17 wins, a 1.25 goals-against average and 73.2 save percentage and five shutouts. Turner continued to be a brick wall in front of the net and to show he’s the best American goalie on the planet.
Turner said it’s been a huge year for him as a player.
“It was huge,” he says. “I mean, I’ve made a lot of strides forward in my career, personally and professionally. I feel a lot more like a pillar at this club right now, which is a really nice feeling. I never would. dreamed that this season goes the way it did. But still it’s all good times can be washed away by a bad time. That’s why I’m going to use that moment and those feelings that I have right now to feed myself for the future, because obviously I could look at all of the work I’ve put in this season and put my hat on it, but that’s not really the kind of person I am. I have a lot of room to improve, I want to improve in a lot of areas of my game, and I’m disappointed with myself that I’m not the player I know I can be in moments of clutch and in the playoff games, and that one really hurt my heart. So, I’m going to look at myself a bit in the mirror, get back to work, and next season I’m going to show up ready to go and give these fans something to be proud of again.
While having all of this success might have a more positive outlook on someone else, the terrible taste of defeat won’t leave Turner anytime soon.
“Yeah, you have to let these things flow a bit,” said the goalkeeper. “It’s been a long year, for me in particular, just going back and forth between club and country and playing more games in a calendar year than I’ve ever had in my life. So yeah, it’s not like forgetting everything, I think you really need to remember those feelings and emotions and use them as fuel. So when you can finally come to terms with all of this, how can you use it to improve your performance in the future? How can you use it to fuel yourself and keep your focus levels where they need to be? Because we have a quick offseason and we’re back in it. We will play in [Concacaf Champions League], which will be great for us and it will be for many of our guys from our teams the first experiences of playing in Central America, and so it will be an exciting time for the future of this club. But for now, we have to let all of these emotions come over us and allow them to kind of guide us for the future. “
Turner won’t have too much time to mourn the loss as the MLS season kicks off in late February.