Here is an interview I did with Fire rookie midfielder Baggio Husidic prior to last Saturday's game against Real Salt Lake. Baggio, , who grew up in Libertyville and played at UIC, touched on a bunch of subjects in the interview including his play with the Fire this year and his early years spent in Bosnia, Germany and eventually Chicago.
**You've played some pretty big minutes as of late, how do you feel you have adapted to MLS play?**
**BH:** At first it was pretty tough. But I fell that I adapted pretty quickly and that kind of gave me the chance to play more minutes and obviously once I started playing more minutes... all the nervousness and all that kind of stuff kind of slowly goes away and I started becoming more confident and more comfortable around the ball.
Check out the rest of the interview after the jump.
**Whether it's been on the wing, as a defensive midfielder, or as an attacking mid, you've played in a few different spots so far this year. Where do you think the Fire see you playing and where do you like to play?**
**BH:** I think they look at me as more of a holding mid but I think I've been playing a little more offensive. I like playing more offensively but I don't mind either offensive or defensive.
**Obviously you grew up with quite a bit of turmoil in your life. You and your family had to flee Bosnia when you were young and then - in pretty quick succession - you moved to Germany and then to Chicago, can you give me a sense of what that was like?**
**BH:** It was tough. Probably the toughest thing I'll ever have to do. I'm sure it was a lot tougher for my parents than it was for me just because I was pretty young but the best way I would describe it would be that it was tough but in a way an unbelievable experience that made me a tougher person at the end.
**What was the role of soccer in your life as you grew up? Was it a little bit of an escape for you?**
**BH:** Yeah definitely. Especially in Germany where there was a lot of racism going on and that kind of stuff so soccer was always a way to kind of feel at home. It was a way to be accepted. In soccer they don't judge you on where you're from, what you look like; they just judge you on your skill and it was good that soccer was always something that I could fall back on.
**You moved to Chicago when you were pretty young. What was it like for you coming up in the Chicago area after spending your early years in Europe?**
**BH:** I moved into government housing in Chicago in a pretty bad neighborhood for two months. I played a lot of soccer tennis which was kind of a way to escape the area. Then we moved to Franklin Park, mostly Hispanic neighborhood and it was still pretty tough. I didn't know a word of English and there were a lot of gangs it was tough but still it was still good experience. Then in Libertyville I lived in a little above average neighborhood that was fine and I liked it there so Libertyville I'd say was probably the best.
**Government housing couldn't have been what you pictured when you imagined the states. What were your first impressions of the country?**
**BH:** Scary. When you say the US everyone pictures both parents having a job, you have a nice house but we got put in these [government] houses and I remember waking up the [first morning here] and remember looking in the alley and it was all dark there was a big parking structure and I just thought to myself, 'How are you supposed to live here?' and it was a really scary moment for me.
**Being a hometown kid it has to be pretty special for you to be able to play with the Fire...**
**BH:** It's a dream come true. Really that's the best way to describe it as a dream come true. I'm happy to be here I'd stay here my whole life if I could and I have no complaints at all.
**I'll finish with a question that deals more with your future. Where do you see yourself - as a soccer player - at this time next year?**
**BH:** Hopefully I'll be starting. Obviously everyone's goal is to start so why not have the same one? I want to have a good offseason, come in fit and prove to the coach that I deserve to be on the field.
**How about in five years?**
**BH:** Pretty much the same thing. Just have a solid starting spot, contribute to the team, get more goals and more assists and hopefully have some championships.
Thanks again to Baggio for the interview. He's playing an ever increasing role for the Fire and should be a player to watch for the team in the years to come so hopefully this piece gave you all a bit more information on him as a man and as a soccer player.
I'm hoping to be able to get a full match preview for the Fire - Houston match up tomorrow, but at the very least I'll have a prediction up so check back for that later on...