Atlanta United goalkeeper Brad Guzan: MLS 'has grown so much'

United States goalkeeper Brad Guzan has hailed Major League Soccer's growth since his departure in the mid-2000s.

Guzan, a former Chivas USA man, moved from MLS to Aston Villa in the summer of 2008 only to return this past July, joining Atlanta United in a league that looks markedly different than the one he left behind.

Speaking after the U.S.'s practice on Tuesday ahead of Friday's World Cup qualifier against Costa Rica, he spoke about some of the changes he's seen.

"I mean, I've enjoyed it. It's been a good transition, we've got a good team down in Atlanta. It's been good to be back, see some familiar faces when you're playing games and things. Overall it's been really good," Guzan said.

"The quality has obviously increased, the league has [gotten] better. The support, the stadiums -- not playing in a bunch of NFL stadiums that are holding 10,000.

"When we get down to Atlanta after these set of qualifiers and we open up Mercedes-Benz [Stadium] for the first time, I think they're expecting a full house. We have a special atmosphere that we've been able to create down there.

"The support's been really great. The league, just in general, has grown so much."

The former Hull City and Middlesbrough keeper spent nearly 10 years in England before signing with Atlanta.

He explained his decision, saying: "Listen, you always want to be playing games. At the time I made the decision...January, February whenever it was, things weren't going great at Middlesbrough, wasn't playing a lot of games.

"As a professional, you ultimately want to be playing."