Football, or football as the rest of the world calls it, is the most watched sport on the planet. Many people can pick up a soccer ball and kick it. Easy to learn, hard to master. For second-year forward Matt Guthrie, it’s a bit more than that. He has worked on his game and is ready to show it to the world.
The second-year Olympian has been playing soccer since he was 4 years old. “My favorite thing about football is scoring goals and winning as a team,” Guthrie said. His football genes were not born with him as his mother also played football. Guthrie noted, “My mum played football most of her life so she got me involved and I’ve been in love ever since.”
Since joining the Mesa Olympians roster, Guthrie has been playing very well. For the 2019-20 season, he started in 19 out of 20 games, with eight goals scored, as well as two game-winning scores (godmesa.com). “Last year was a bit difficult with selfishness taking over, but this year will be much better in my opinion,” Guthrie added.
Guthrie takes pride in involving his teammates. “A good way to involve my teammates is to always be upbeat and positive. Once you get negative, it affects your confidence and doesn’t help with team chemistry,” Guthrie said.
Speaking of teammates, Guthrie has a lot of good guys he’s proud to rely on. Second-year goaltender Angel Noriega is ready to enter his second year with Guthrie. “Matt is an incredible player, his involvement is crucial, mainly because of the serious energy he exudes in all of us. He is a committed player who is always ready for action,” said Noriega. Guthrie’s presence on the pitch invigorates his team-mates, as any leader should. Noriega noted: “As a goalkeeper, I know that if I see an opening where I can send the ball to him, I will definitely take my chance by because of my confidence that he will execute accordingly.”
The next step is always the “goal” for everyone, and that includes Guthrie. “At the moment I don’t have a division one scholarship offer but I hope to play at the best level whether it’s division one or two. Ideally I would like to transfer to a four year university and continue my career, and eventually turn professional,” Guthrie added. His teammates also believe it’s possible. Noriega continued, “Matt is definitely capable of reaching the top division if he continues to work hard and dedicate himself. to this job. There’s no doubt in my mind that he couldn’t make it, he’s such a key player!
Second-year forward Alejandro Benavidez echoed, “He (Guthrie) definitely has a future at a division one team. He is friendly and easy-going, very approachable and has a great work ethic. He usually has parallel workouts and many others stick with him. Benavidez remembered good times. “A good memory I have with Matt would be his first goal with the team. I took the ball on the touchline and went through a few defenders. I went through the ball close to the goal line and Matt controlled it with little space and scored a banger from a tight angle,” Benavidez said.
Guthrie has worked hard throughout his career. As Benavidez said, “His speed and strength are his best assets.” Whatever happens next, Mesa Olympians will be happy to see him succeed in whatever he decides to do.