Earlier this morning Royal Blue Mersey had a chance to get a couple of minutes to talk to Tim Howard about his new commercial with Allstate as well as some things about goalkeeping and Everton. You can check out his newest commercial here as well as the behind the scenes video from his commercial shoot here. A big thanks to Tim Howard for the opportunity, and hopefully next time we can grab some more time as we have a few more questions from folks.
RBM: So to start things off Tim, you are working with Allstate as part of their new relationship with MLS, I suppose I have to ask the obligatory question about returning to MLS at some point in the future. Especially with so many Americans returning home, is it something that most Americans abroad are still interested in or is interest waning?
TH: Yea I think it is important MLS is growing, you see these big companies like Allstate getting involved so they take it seriously, and you also see the big stars being interested in MLS and wanting to come back. The important thing we need to look at is if these stars want to contribute or look for the golden ticket. For me I still want to have some energy and not just limp back to MLS.
RBM: So I managed to watch the behind the scenes video and I have to ask, as a keeper is shooting a commercial as much fun as it seems with getting to dive onto the padding and everything?
TH: Yea it is really fun to shoot the commercial, a blast to do. Normally kids come and jump on your bed and I always tell them to stop, but they couldn’t get me off these mats. I had more fun diving on the mats than I do diving in training.
RBM: Speaking of the video, I saw you are a big fan of the NBA, I have to ask, and what do you think of the whole Lebron James decision?
TH: Well my first thought was why didn’t he go to the Knicks, but in the end we all watched the show because we were curious. I didn’t have a problem with what he did, although it would have been nice if they told us before the fifth commercial break.
RBM: Who would you like to play for in the NBA besides your hometown Knicks?
TH: The Clippers, they are the anti-Lakers, and you get to play in the Staples Center. Plus now they are pretty decent as well.
RBM: Everyone would be a little upset with me if I didn’t talk a bit of soccer with you, as a former keeper myself, I was wondering what the most difficult save for you to make is?
TH: The most difficult for me is one I think is the most difficult in all of soccer; it is that low driven cross into the box. Either the forward gets his head on it and directs it somewhere on goal, or if he misses the header the ball travels to the back post and goes in. It is difficult because you have to just sit there and wait for it.
RBM: What are your expectations for the upcoming season?
TH: Obviously it is to challenge for a European position so at least 7th or better. Ideally we would like to be in the op 6-7 around Christmas, and that would give us a chance to climb up to 4th or 5th in the latter part of the season. We just need to be in a place to challenge especially with the number of teams working for a Champions League spot.
RBM: The past several seasons have seen Everton begin the season pretty slowly. Despite changes to the preseason the problem still persists, is there any one culprit to the problem, or is it just every match brings new issues that need to be addressed?
TH: It is hard to say exactly. You are right in that we are a resilient team, and we have also had problems with injuries since we are a small squad. But we also need to set ourselves up so we are not always working from behind.
RBM: Have you ever received the "cold bucket in the toilet" treatment at Finch Farm?
TH: Yes, once. Now my door stays open.