BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Daniel Johnson kept an open mind when he moved to Birmingham in early 2019.
The Legion FC midfielder came to the Magic City after living in Chicago for a couple of years - and loving every minute in the Windy City. Johnson was constantly exploring the city’s neighborhoods and finding new things to do in Chi-Town. It’s a trend he’s continued in Birmingham.
“Life outside of soccer is really important,” Johnson said. And though the 23-year-old Atlanta native is still fairly new to Birmingham, he already has a long list of restaurant he likes to visit. He also has a keen sense of what makes the Magic City unique.
Nearly a decade before Johnson joined Legion FC for its inaugural season, he crossed the pond and joined the West Ham United Academy in England. The academy provided not only the opportunity to advance his skills, it also required Johnson to mature at a fast rate.
Johnson returned from to the States to play his college career at Louisville. He was drafted 11th overall by the Chicago Fire in the 2017 MLS SuperDraft.
“I wish I could remember that day better. It was such a whirlwind," Johnson said of getting drafted. "I just felt really lucky that I was able to get to that position and be able to do that. Obviously it’s something I’ve been working for my whole life and it’s something you dream about, but until it happens you never really think this is going to be me.”
Along with playing professional soccer, one of the cooler opportunities for Johnson while playing for the Fire was sharing a locker room with German legend Bastian Schweinsteiger.