Bye Week Breakdown: Jaap Stam and Gustavo Vallecilla (Part 2)



In this Part 2 of Bye week Breakdown, I've detailed what I found to be an impressive interview. Thursday, media members got the chance to speak with FC Cincy's new Ecuadorian Center Back Gustavo Vallecilla. Gustavo is just 21 years old, and is on loan from S.D. Aucas in Ecuador. Vallecilla comes at a time when FC Cincinnati is razor thin at Center Back. It's a position that has come under scrutiny lately as the pairing of Nick Hagglund and Tom Pettersson has seemed to struggle in the club's first three matches. In his conference, manager Jaap Stam preached patience with Gustavo as he is very talented but also very young, and playing in a new league. There is reason for excitement though, Vallecilla possesses the skills that Stam's system requires. He's big at 6' 3" and has shown in Ecuador's top league and for their Youth National teams, that he has the ability to link passes with the midfield and start the attack. The exciting new addition spoke with media through an interpreter on Thursday.


On his first impressions of the club and his teammates.


"It's been very good, when I arrived I had a very warm welcome. Not only are they good teammates but also good people. They all made me feel very welcome as soon as I arrived. Now we just have to focus on training."



Gustavo was asked how he see's the club's level of play compared to Ecuador's top league.


"I think the game here in the USA is a lot quicker than it is in Ecuador. There's a lot of high press and transitions, a lot of quick touches. I think as a team we need to start linking together to have a better product on the field. I think as I continue to train with my teammates I'll be able to understand how the team wants to play and I will be able to contribute more."



On what he knew about MLS and how he's been able to settle in with the club so far.


"I knew that it was a very quick league. I know some players on other teams and they were telling me that MLS is a league that is growing very fast. So now I'm here and I'm ready to go."




Gustavo had to wait over two weeks, both in Ecuador and in the states before being able to train with his new club. First he had receive his Visa and then complete Health and Safety protocols before he was able to start training with the team. He was able to keep training with his team in Ecuador and then away from his teammates in Cincinnati.


He was able to give a little insight on what those weeks in limbo were like for him.


"Yeah, it did take some time. It took close to three weeks. During that time, I continued training with my team in Ecuador and It was kind of a mini preseason if I'm being honest. Then, as soon as I got my visa, I headed here to train."




On what he thinks he can bring to the team and what he thinks his role with the club will be.

"As a player, you're not just playing for yourself, but for your teammates and for your family."