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Exclusive: Jack Mac talks growin’ up in Georgia, MLS Atlanta, and Montreal livin’

Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

Jack McInerney is one of the biggest success stories of Georgia youth soccer.

Born in Chattanooga, McInerney grew up in the Atlanta area playing club football with Concorde Fire, Cobb Futbol Club, and the Olympic Development Team. He says that playing under Steve Gummer he says that these clubs allowed for doors to "open up" to eventually make the youth national teams.

He has represented the United States at the U15, U17, U20, and U23 level, and participated in the U17 residency at the IMG Academy in Bradeton, Florida.

In addition to his accolades, McInerney says TI is his favorite local rapper, and Atlanta getting an MLS expansion franchise is "great."

We caught up with McInerney to ask about his experience in Georgia youth soccer and whether or not he would want to return home to play for MLS Atlanta.

"I grew up playing on very good teams, with Cobb and Concorde who are two of the best teams, and I tried for the ODT and made the team every single year," he said.

"Steve [Gummer] was my coach, I mean I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for them. That gave me opportunities to make the regional team, and that opened up to make the national team. It just kind of one door after another kept opening."

McInerney still keeps in touch with his coaches and former teammates from Georgia, and has nothing but fond memories of his youth days.

"I still have a younger sister that plays soccer in Georgia, and there's always major tournaments in Atlanta and big things, there are so many youth players."

McInerney said that he thinks the local support for the new MLS franchise will be "pretty successful" due to the culture of soccer in the city and surrounding areas. He also said that he could not rule out ever playing for MLS Atlanta in the future.

"Obviously I can't say where I'm going to be or what I'm going to do, but if that opportunity came up I would for sure look into it," McInerney told 21 Peach Street.

"I know my family would be excited and I have a lot of friends in Georgia and they are excited that an MLS team is even coming, so I would definitely have to look into it."

Still, playing soccer up in Montreal is much different than plying his trade in the Dirty South.

"Montreal is a different world. Not only you are in Canada but you're in a French speaking city," McInerney said.

"There is definitely a lot to adapt to. The club understands that MLS players are not accustom to playing in MLS and playing in a city where they speak a whole different language and have a whole different currency so the club helps you adapt.

"You know down in the south you have a short drive and you can be wherever family's house or anyone else's house, so definitely it is a different world up here."

Keep up with McInerney and other top soccer players around the world from Georgia, through our "Talent Train from Georgia," weekly column.