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National anthem has increased meaning for new US citizen Stefan Frei

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The “importance and weight of it [the anthem] shouldn’t get lost.”

A few weeks ago Stefan Frei swore an oath to become an American citizen. Tuesday’s match against the Colorado Rapids was Frei’s first time hearing his own National anthem on the Fourth of July, prior to a match.

For the Seattle Sounders keeper it was something special. After Thursday’s practice Frei told Sounder at Heart, “Ever since I’ve finally become citizen — it’s unique in North American sports you play the anthem before every game — it carries some weight, you know? It’s not just a procession that comes before the game and finally we can enjoy the game for fans. It should carry a little bit more than that.

“In the past it was to be respectful, it wasn’t my country at that point, but now it’s my country. I’m really proud to share that moment with the people. Like I said, as much as we hear it in North America the anthems are very common things, especially when it comes to sports, their importance and weight of it shouldn’t get lost.”