Introducing Richard Farley to the ProSoccerTalk staff

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“ProSoccerTalk will add layers of informed context to the news. We’ll be heavy on MLS and the U.S. national teams, but we’re thinking globally too, watching EPL, Champions League, Euro 2012, etc.”

– ProSoccerTalk’s Steve Davis, on the Mar. 6 launch of this site

Consider me ready to lay another layer, and after sitting on the sidelines for three weeks (while Steve’s gotten the site off to a roaring start), I’m itchin’ to get going. So building off our long-running, three-week-old tradition, I’ll take this chance to crack the knuckles and give you a little background on what should hopefully be my Chewbacca to Steve’s Han Solo (I’ve been told the Star Wars demographic’s huge in cyber space):

There’ve been four headline points in my soccer life. First, like most of you, I played growing up, transitioning from blazing forward to midfield hardman to defense as my technical skills failed to develop (stop me if you’ve heard this one before).

Luckily, I was able to persist into high school before another defining point: my end of sophomore year report card (if you ‘C’ what I’m getting at). Making up for lost GPA meant sports took a back seat.

You could say I’ve never quite gotten over having to walk away.

But before having to temporarily closet my boots, I’d found those late night, English Football League replays that started popping up in various places in the late `80s, early `90s. I got to see a young Ryan Giggs wrong foot opposing right backs with those few trademark swivels he’d put in behind the ball. I got to see the quizzical looks of my classmates as I tried to imitate him.

So it was long before my fourth defining moment that my addiction began to fester, though after I’d sat with 93,000 others at the Rose Bowl while Gheoghe Hagi took apart Colombia in 1994, I was all-in. The Marcus Allens and Magic Johnsons that’d carried my mainstream sport fandom to my teens had moved on. I was ready to move on to the rest of my sporting life.

Smash cut to 18 years later, where I’ve just completed a year as chief editor at FOXSoccer.com, and it’s hard to hold back the smiles. I’m shifting from Los Angeles to Portland – one of the true hot beds of soccer this country’s got – and I’m shifting to a network, site, and team that’s ready to get in on this game we’ve come to love.

If there’s anything that could make that unforgettable day in Pasadena seem like so long ago, this move is it.

As Steve said, we’re going to be providing a lot of perspectives on a number of beats, and given my background, it should be no surprise that I’m going to touch on it all. Expect em to go from England to Spain and the rest of Europe down to South America, up to Mexico and whereever else this addiciton takes us.

You’re going to read a lot of commentary from me about soccer the world over, but at its core, the site has MLS and the U.S. in its heart. No matter where we go, we’ll always end here.