MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO)Minnesota United welcomes Colorado to TCF Bank Stadium Saturday night, which is an interesting matchup for one Loons defender.

Eric Miller was traded from Colorado to Minnesota earlier this season. He will face his old team for the first time Saturday – and the Woodbury native could not be more excited about which side he is on.

“The moment it happened, I was super happy. It was super cool to just be able to finally come home and play,” Miller said. “To have followed the team so closely when I was a kid, to be able to finally, like, get traded home was pretty amazing.”

Eric Miller (credit: CBS)

For some players, it is not that big of a deal to play for your hometown team. It doesn’t really matter which pro team you’re on – but this does not apply to Miller.

“Yeah, for me I think it’s a big deal. I feel super lucky to be able to play here, I think it was always something I planned on doing at some point, especially towards the end of my career,” he said. “I think obviously now I’m a little younger than I probably originally planned on doing, but I’m super excited to be here, and I, yeah, I’m just really lucky to be able to play for my hometown team.”

And they are happy to have him.

“Dependable,” said head coach Adrian Heath. “He’s a really good professional. What you see is what you get. You know, he comes in every day, trains at his maximum.”

And for a hometown kid, to see how the sport has evolved here since he was a kid, has been amazing to see. Even better to be a part of.

“The growth has been huge. I mean, obviously going from the Thunder to the Stars to United to MLS has been, I think a whirlwind for a lot of the people here, and I think no one probably anticipated how, especially off-field it would be successful in the MLS so far,” Miller said. “I think the fan support here is amazing. I was even shocked my first couple games at how good the fan support was, how good the supporter’s section was. I think all that stuff is pretty cool for a kid that grew up here, to finally see, and huge stadiums and all that stuff.”