Giovani dos Santos is excited. He's been through a full morning of interviews, but he's still got the same bubbly, bouncy energy he exudes on the pitch week in, week out. He's wearing a team-issued LA Galaxy jacket, but with his dark jeans, diamond-studded watch, and dark lowtops, he very easily could be hitting one of LA's most exclusive spots for a night out on the town. When I complimented the sneakers, he proudly announces, "they're Supras!"
Gio's is happy to be an MLS All-Star. Almost as happy as he is to be in MLS.
Dos Santos speaks glowingly of the league, reluctant to compare it with his previous time in La Liga in Spain.
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"MLS is a league that is growing. What can I say? The league is more physical, the players here can play 90 minutes or more," said dos Santos. "There is a little bit more quality in Spain, because it's more technical, but it's difficult to say.
"I think right now, any league is difficult to play in, MLS is growing so fast, and everyone wants to play here. The young players are doing a great job too, so it's a great league right now."
The Mexican is nothing but affable, laughing at anything and everything. But when asked about his biggest challenge as an athlete, the Mexican international got serious for once.
"Oof. To keep myself in the elite. To keep myself daily, every thinking that I want to be in the elite as a soccer player. So I always every day I focus, to work hard, to take care of myself, to take care of my body. You know, soccer is a short -- how do you say? [laughs] -- career! It's a short career, so I always try to focus, and I want to be in the elite for a long time."
Dos Santos has spoken before about bringing his brother Jonathan to MLS, and he's still trying to make it happen.
"Yeah! Yeah, of course! I hope he can come soon. He wants to come, to be fair, we were talking about it. Now, he knows the league better because I am here. I'm always saying to him, 'MLS is a great league, he's gonna be good here', and he wants to stay here."
At 27 years old, dos Santos is in the prime of his career, but approaching the tail end of his life cycle as a top level athlete. With rumors circling about interest from his previous home in La Liga, he made it clear that his future is with the Galaxy.
"I see myself in the Galaxy. I want to stay for a long time."
This is dos Santos' first All-Star Game, but don't expect it to be his last. He's settled right into the league and loves it. With his talent, that spotlight and no interest in leaving, this is just the start for the dos Santos.
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