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Rodrigo Lopez talks his return to Sacramento Republic FC: “It gave me chills”

Star discusses that and more on “The Breakaway.”

Toluca v Pumas UNAM - Torneo Apertura 2017 Liga MX Photo by Hector Vivas/Getty Images

Sacramento Republic FC midfielder Rodrigo Lopez was the latest guest on the club’s podcast, “The Breakaway,” and there was lots of good stuff in there, as you would expect.

Lopez played the only game since he returned to the club for his second stint in March off the bench, and told show host Connor Sutton there’s been a silver lining for him during the current coronavirus shutdown.

“It’s affecting me and it’s helping me,” he said. “I’ll tell you why it’s helping, because I had an injury for most of preseason.”

Lopez talks about the “Miracle at Bonney,” when he scored a hat trick with Sac Republic down 2-0 at home against LA Galaxy II in the 2014 Western Conference final, propelling SRFC to the title in their first season.

He noted that Max Alvarez wanted in on the action, but Lopez shrugged him off to take the crucial penalties on that night.

In addition, Lopez spoke about his return to Sacramento and the reception he’s gotten since coming back this year.

“It’s been great, it’s been a wonderful experience, to be honest,” he said. “I’ve said it over and over but ever since I came to Sacramento in 2014, I knew I could call this place home eventually. We went through so much, and I’ve been through so much as an athlete and I was so close to retiring before coming to Sacramento, actually, in 2014, I was about to call it quits. And Sacramento gave me a second chance. When I saw what the team was about, what the city was about and the love it had for sports and for soccer in general, it made me push myself and obviously I had a year that no one will ever forget, obviously we won the championship. Everything just came together.

“2015 was a tough year, we did well but it was a tough year because I had a couple options to leave and I never wanted to leave but this option in Mexico came up and it was one of my dreams so I had to take it. I didn’t want to leave but obviously I wanted to pursue my dream. Coming back after so long and seeing how much love I get from the fans still, it was just great. I honestly feel at home right now. I appreciate every fan who’s reached out to me, who was at the airport and obviously everyone who was at opening night was just phenomenal, it gave me chills coming into the match and seeing all the familiar faces around and always being positive with me, it’s always helpful.”

You can hear more on that subject, why Lopez had to be convinced to first join Republic FC, his food preferences and much, much more on “The Breakaway.”

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