From Iowa to New York and down to Florida. That’s the flight plan over the next five days for 21-year-old Red Bulls newcomer Ian Christianson. Not that you'd hear him complaining, though.
New York selected Christianson in Thursday’s MLS SuperDraft with the 22nd overall pick, the team’s only selection in the draft. The Georgetown University midfielder and Iowa native was on interim head coach Mike Petke’s radar for quite some time, and will now look to join his new teammates as he prepares for the MLS preseason.
“I’m really pumped,” Christianson said. “I’ve been to New York once and I loved it, so it’s going to be pretty awesome. I’m really excited and hopefully I make the team, move in, and get settled.”
Pumped may be a bit of an understatement. Just moments before, Christianson was sitting around the computer with his family watching the online video stream of the draft. Then it went a little something like this: Red Bulls are on the clock, Red Bulls call his name, Christianson goes crazy.
“I just kind of jumped off the couch and was flying all around,” he said. “The Red Bulls are one of the biggest clubs in MLS, in New York, and I’m just excited and honored to get selected and ready to get started.”
That’s exactly what Christianson will do over the next few days, as he takes the first steps toward his professional career when he joins the rest of the club in Harrison, NJ for physicals. Then it’s off to Sarasota, FL for the team’s first preseason trip.
At this point in time, Christianson didn’t hide the fact that it was undoubtedly one of the greatest moments of his young career, with this past year’s runner-up finish in the College Cup playing a close second. But excited as he is to get ready, there’s still that patented rookie/draftee shock that comes with new territory.
“It’s a little overwhelming, a little mind blowing,” Christianson admitted. “If you were to ask me at any time in my life if I would have the opportunity to train with Thierry Henry or Tim Cahill, I probably would’ve said, ‘You’re crazy.’ But it’s a dream come true.”
The Red Bulls kick off the 2013 season on the road against the Portland Timbers on Mar. 3. Following a trip down the coast to play San Jose on Mar. 10, the Red Bulls return to Red Bull Arena for the 2013 home opener against DC United on Mar. 16. Season Tickets are available by visiting our tickets page, or by calling 877.RB.SOCCER.