In an interview with Le Blog de Jayjay, Aurelien Collin provides an interesting overview of his career to date. The New York Red Bulls center back explains his move from France to Spain as a young soccer player seeking professional opportunity in the game. And he describes his zig-zagging journey through European clubs - Gretna in Scotland, Panaserraikos in Greece, Wrexham in the English league system, Vitoria Setubal in Portugal; close-but-no-cigar opportunities with Lazio and Porto - before landing in MLS with Sporting Kansas City as a well-traveled 25-year-old:
Since I was a little boy, I dream of living in the United States. I bathed in American Hip-Hop culture, so I take my chance without any regrets.
Collin enjoyed perhaps the greatest individual and team success of his career at Sporting KC, winning league-wide All-Star and Best XI honors, and the 2013 MLS Cup MVP award. With KC, he won US Open Cup in 2012 and MLS Cup in 2013 - and even won a compliment from President Obama when he visited the White House with his team:
Basically, he says once he's done, he wants to dress like me, because I'm stylish.
But for New York Red Bulls fans, the interview is significant because Collin explains how he sees his current situation. He mentions that RBNY was interested in signing him in 2013 and 2014, and describes the club as "one of the two biggest" (alongside LA Galaxy) in MLS.
Further, he says he's unlikely to have his head turned by other offers. He is settled in an American soccer scene he regards as...not quite second to none, but second to few:
Europe has much to envy the United States in terms of infrastructure especially. I am not talking about the European teams, but for example, the mid-table clubs in Ligue 1 are very far from the infrastructures of the American clubs. What I was looking for, I found in the United States.
He wants to win trophies in New York, of course, and he wants to stay:
Here, life is beautiful and I would really like to win a title in New York. For me to leave the biggest club of the MLS, it will really have to be an offer that can not refuse.
Elsewhere in the interview, Collin reveals his most challenging opponents and best friends in the game (former RBNY teammate Ronald Zubar is one).