The Portland Timbers have officially kicked off the 2020-2021 preseason and so far they have accumulated 4 Wins and 2 Losses. This is very much an anticipated preseason as the Timbers are expected to start strong. Coach Savarese has expressed his desire to go hard from the minute the game starts, dominate the ball and, of course, the score.
With that said, it is no surprise the Timbers enlisted Right Winger, Yimmi Chara. Yimmi comes to the Portland Timbers with an extensive history having played for strong and dominant leagues in Mexico, Brazil and his home country of Colombia. We anticipate the addition of Yimmi to the team will bring endurance, speed, agility and multi-tasking exactly what the Timbers need to start this season strong.
Here is what Yimmi had to say about his arrival to the Timbers, his hopes for his debut season and the experience he brings with him.
*Oregon Sports News conducted this interview in Spanish and translated both the questions and answers into English.
OSN: First of all thank you for giving OSN some 1:1 time; we are excited that you are in Portland. To begin, who is Yimmi Chara? We know a lot about you on paper, but we would love to know a little bit more about you. We know you are from Colombia, so tell us about what happened after that?
Yimmi Chara: Good afternoon. Yes, I went through Mexico. I was in Monterey; I was also in the Dorados of Culiacan of Sinaloa. I also made a stop by Juniors de Barranquilla (Colombia) and after that I ended up in Atletico Mineiro (Brazil).
OSN: What a journey! You have basically been through the whole continent! What brings you to Portland? Obviously, this is one of the top teams in the US Soccer League. How do you feel here?
Yimmi Chara: Yes, quite the journey. I have been with great teams, very happy with what I have accomplished in my career. The idea of coming here to Portland…the one thing that attracted me the most was its fans, its institution. Every time my brother has shared with me, I’ve seen it reflected in this short period of time that I’ve been here. Therefore, I am very happy with the way I have been welcomed.
OSN: You have obviously mentioned your brother. Your family seems to be a soccer family. Your brothers, one of them plays in Venezuela, your brother Diego is here with the Timbers. How did the love for soccer come about from you guys?
Yimmi Chara: Yes, thanks to God, the three of us were able to become soccer players. We achieved that dream through sacrifice, humbleness and working hard every day. My oldest brother has already retired from soccer, but he played in very good teams in Colombia & Venezuela. Diego, everything he has accomplished here in this institution and the legacy he has built. Well, here I am trying to follow their footsteps.
OSN: How exciting! Exciting indeed! Let’s talk a little bit about your position. You play the right winger position correct?
Yimmi Chara: Correct.
OSN: One of the oldest positions in the history of soccer. One of the few that has stayed in the game. How does Yimmi play this position?
Yimmi Chara: Well yes. I believe that is a position with a lot of intensity. The one thing I’ve always worked and have identified me for being that type of intense player. That is always available to what the team requires and will need. I believe that from a very young age I had that passion to get familiar with different positions and that is the one that I always liked.
OSN: How do you see your position or the way you play that position fitting into the existing Timbers organization?
Yimmi Chara: Well, by adapting myself. Adapting to what has been working towards. Doing my part in what the team wants to do in the field. We hope that the adaption is a quick one and that I can contribute a lot to the team.
OSN: Next question, you have played at the international level with the Colombian National team. Tell me a little bit about your experience in 2018. There was something about a goal? I heard it being talked about.
Yimmi Chara: Yes, happy. I believe one of the most important goals of my life. Because of what it means to wear the national team’s jersey. It is a privilege to have been there and I am always working toward being on the national team. Hoping that this will be a great year to go back.
OSN: The last question. How is Portland treating you? The weather? The people? How do you feel here?
Yimmi Chara: Good, as I was sharing earlier, adapting to the weather. The field is something new to me. I had played on synthetic fields before but always as a visitor. So that is going to be something important for me to adapt quickly. To learn how the ball runs and to play at the speed that it must be played with and the welcoming of the people has been exceptional and I believe it is thanks to the legacy my brother has created and I hope to be able to live up to that.
OSN: Thank you very much, Yimmi. Welcome to Portland! It was a pleasure!
The Timbers play the Minnesota United FC this coming March 1, 2020 at 4:30 at Providence Park in Portland, Oregon. For the upcoming schedule and tickets visit the Portland Timbers website.