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Turner talks about Lithuanian passport and European ambitions

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It took Turner 3-4 years to get his Lithuanian passport.

MLS: New England Revolution at D.C. United Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Matt Turner has European ambitions but for now he’s focused on the New England Revolution.

Turner recently obtained his Lithuanian passport, which will help him make a move overseas. This moment was the culmination of a multi-year journey that began when the netminder wasn’t getting much domestic attention.

“The Lithuanian passport was an avenue I explored when I didn’t get invited to the MLS combine and I didn’t get picked in the MLS SuperDraft.” Turner told media after Tuesday’s win over D.C. United. “I went through some heritage and was able to [get the passport]. It was a three or four year process.”

Turner joined the Revs in 2016, serving as the third string goalkeeper until he won the starting spot in 2018. Although there have been some turbulent times—most notably the start of 2019—he has largely remained the team’s first-choice option.

Celebrated as a star by those who watch him every week, Turner’s play has also caught the attention of those outside of New England. He’s been named to MLSSoccer.com’s Team of the Week several times and finished fifth in the 2019 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year voting. He received a pair of U.S. National Team call-ups, though he hasn’t earned a cap.

All of this has translated to European interest, according to Charlie Davies. The player-turned-pundit even went as far as to predict that Turner won’t be in New England in six months.

With his career picking up steam, Turner said that getting his Lithuanian passport is “looking like some pretty good timing.” Of course, plenty has to happen if he’s going to make the jump to Europe, especially since he signed a multi-year contract extension in 2019.

For now, Turner is in New England, putting in stellar performances for the team that gave him his first chance.

“My heart is here in New England right now,” Turner said. “I’m just going to focus on going out every single day in games or in training and focus on doing the best I can for this club and for the fans because you guys deserve that.”