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Red Bulls’ Tim Cahill has wise words for Landon Donovan

Feb 24, 2013, 5:28 PM EDT

Tottenham Hotspur v  New York Red Bulls Getty Images

For years and years I have defended Landon Donovan. The man has the right to do whatever makes Landon Donovan happy.

Every human being should have that right, so long as they aren’t adversely affecting others along their happy way.

There is, however, another way to look at this place where life and career collide, where Donovan is having some difficulty dealing with it. And it comes from a man who knows Donovan a little – and who knows something of what the LA Galaxy star is going through.

(MORE: Donovan is returning – in late March)

New York Red Bulls striker Tim Cahill was a teammate as Donovan did two short tours with Everton. Not only that, but Cahill is among the top players of his generation from Australia, so he knows what it’s like to carry an enormous burden of hopeful expectations.

Therefore, when Cahill speaks on this sensitive subject, it’s coming from a better place compared to the rest of us. And his take on Donovan is pretty interesting (and wise), spinning this delicate egg around and observing from a different angle.

(MORE: Donovan speaks publicly for first time since December)

What the Red Bulls and Australian international striker told reporters following Saturday’s contest in Tucson in the Desert Diamond Cup.

Listen, I’m blessed to be a footballer. All I can say is people have to get up and go to work at 5 in the morning, like my parents. I always forget the hardship of people, what they go through mentally.”

“ … You’ve got to put things in perspective. [Donovan’s] got the world on his shoulders. It’s not a bad thing to have on your shoulders, is it? … It’s a compliment when everything’s thrown at you. When something goes wrong, it’s your fault.”

“ … You have to question why you play football. If it’s not for the right reasons, then stop. But if it is, then continue. He’s a good kid. He knows what he can do and what he can’t do, so I would just look at putting life into perspective. We’ve got a great job in the MLS. That’s the way I look at things.”

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