Matt Turner was preparing for the mid-week media availability when Arnór Traustason got him with a circle below the waist. It’s a silly game, but it’s also an indicator that the newcomer is fitting in.
The 27-year-old represented Iceland at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, as well as the 2016 European Championship, accomplishments that come with a certain amount of clout.
Despite this, Traustason hasn’t shown any ego since joining the New England Revolution as he’s been working hard daily. Turner noted that Traustason is “already looked upon as sort of a leader in the locker room.”
“He’s fit in really well with the guys quickly,” Turner explained. “The guy’s work rate is awesome. He goes out there on the field and he’s tough on tackles, he’s technical, he makes great and smart runs, not just in behind but just him movement inside to open things up for other players unselfishly is great.”
Traustason was lively during his Revolution debut, contributing 81 minutes in the team’s 1-0 over D.C. United.
Although he lined up on the left, Traustason frequently moved inside to find the ball. This opened space for others, such as left back Christian Mafla. Saturday marked the first game these two played together, but there already seems to be some chemistry.
“I think Arnór moves very well,” Mafla complimented. “We’ve been able to understand one another well. I think when we interacted during Saturday’s game we interacted well. We were able to create a few combinations during the game.”
Traustason hasn’t had much time with his new teammates due to international duty and a subsequent quarantine period. In the coming weeks, we should see more fluid play as he becomes more familiar with the club.
“He’s a very active midfield player, likes to play on the left, can come inside, can play behind back lines, can play between the lines, so he’s pretty active,” Bruce Arena said. “Hopefully, he continues to grow with our team over the next couple of games. We’re real happy to have him. We think he’s a great addition.”