Monday, July 19, 2010

Locker Room Reaction to 2-1 win vs. D.C.


On the game
“You’re going to lose games along the way, and the way you respond in the next game is important. Our response was really good tonight. I thought we went out in the first half and set the tone. The conditions were going to be unbearable at some point tonight and they were. I think it was really challenging obviously for both teams, and I’m happy the way the team came out on top. Give D.C. a lot of credit - I thought they played real hard.”

On the friendlier road reception
“I like playing at home. I’d rather be at home. Certainly both those players [Donovan and Buddle] deserve positive responses - they’ve done great in the league this year.”

On the game
“The game was a difficult game. I think we knew that. D.C. are a team that are fairly desperate to get points at this point in the season, and they put everything they had into it. We made a few good plays, and on another night if we’re a little better we score a few more goals, but it’s a good win for us.”

On facing Andy Najar
“I was very impressed with him. I’ve heard a lot about him. I’ve only seen some tape and highlights, and I thought he did very well. Obviously the goal was well taken, and I’m surprised how well he did in the air, and technically I thought he was very good, and he plays a lot older than he is. I was impressed.”

On snapping the losing streak
“We haven’t been used to losing at all this year, and last week we lost in Seattle in the Open Cup, and then in New England, so we needed to stop that, and I say all the time that winning is a habit, and we got out of the little things we do right last week, and this week we did them right, and we did them well. And when you do that, we have enough talent that we’re going to win.”

On his goal
“Sean [Franklin] got free somehow down the right side, and he played a ball across, and it had enough pace where the defender had to slide, and I was lucky that he blocked it a little bit and put it in my stride. There was a little bit of spin on the ball so the defender was able to catch up and made a good block on it - and I was fortunate enough again to get the ball back, I get clear and take a touch, and put it on target. And it found the back of the net.”

On the game
“We lost two games on the road, and we wanted to come out here and get some points, and we knew it wasn’t going to be easy especially facing the humidity, but we talked about it all week, and we tried to stay focused and compact, and I think guys on defense did a really good job of staying together and not getting stretched, and we were able to pull out a victory.”

On the first goal
“First [goal] I attribute to an exceptional effort from a very good player in the league, Edson Buddle. He used his ability of making a play out of nothing and score a great goal. Having said that I think we can prevent it and can probably make a save on the play.”

On the second goal
“The second [goal] is an error, another youthful error. Giving a ball away in a bad spot and our players are trying to recover from it and Julius [James] lunges and the ball I assume hits his arm and they call a penalty kick. Now all of the sudden the momentum has just shifted after we had scored a great goal off a set piece where Andy [Najar] just rises above everybody and is a brilliant ball from Pablo [Hernandez] who an excellent performance. Those are moments in the game where you got to continue with it you feel the momentum, we have an opportunity to make a 2-1 right before that play and we didn’t. So again, it’s a lump and it’s devastating.”

On Chris Pontius’ injury
“[Pontius] got fouled badly in the first play of the game, he kind of fought through it. I was told at half-time by a medical staff that they think it’s a broken foot. I have to wait to figure that out so we have to make a sub at halftime because of that, then we have another injury later in the game - two subs, two injuries - and in the last one we tried to push the game.”

On the loss
“Again it came down to a couple of mistakes. It was an even game. I felt that in the first half we started slow, I think we dropped off too much. Our back line was too deep. We adjusted that and made that better after 15-20 minutes and all of the sudden we started getting some outside back involvement, started getting a little bit of the game. But overall I think it was a very even first half, except Edson Buddle makes an offensive play. In the second half we come out motivated and ready to get back in it. Credit to our guys for fighting back in, you get the equalizer and you have the momentum and then we make an error and we shoot ourselves in the foot. That’s my assessment of the game.”

On Jordan Graye
“[Graye]’s a young player and that’s what you get. At the end of the day he’s playing left back. He is our third left back. We have Marc Burch - broken foot, we have Rodney Wallace - broken leg. He’s a fourth round draft pick who has had some very good games for us. He’s made some errors that have cost us, and unfortunately that’s what young players go through. Just like every one of our players I care about him and I want him to learn from it and we’re going to do everything possible to help him.”

On Los Angeles
“I don't even know what to say. [LA] is a good team. They have some good players and veteran leadership, and they are okay with you keeping the ball for the majority of the game. They had some guys that stepped up and made some big plays. [Edson] Buddle turned nothing into a goal, and all of a sudden we were down 1-0. We were then fighting the whole game, and playing against a team like LA that defends as a unit, it's tough to go down a goal like that. “

On coming back
“We fought back, but we had a mental lapse and we were down 2-1 again. It was a solid effort on our part, I know our guys played hard. But in the end [the result] is just not good enough. It's just not good enough unfortunately. “

On United's struggles
“I've played here a long time, and when you go down to a man on our roster talent-wise we don't have a problem. I think other teams are more organized. As a forward, I watch the other team's forwards during the game, and they take time to turn and check different pockets. I don't know if I ever had time to turn tonight. I think that we shoot ourselves in the foot, we don't finish our chances, we find ourselves behind all the time. We pushed forward [after tying the game], but within minutes [the Galaxy] were in the lead. And there you are, fighting to get back in the game. It's tough.”

On the team's morale
“We are young, but we keep making the same mistakes over and over again - it's almost the definition of insanity. For the guys in this locker room this is really difficult. I don't know if everyone knows this, knows what is going on here, but I do. The coaches [know what is going on] and so do some of the older guys. There are consequences for our actions. You know, I'm not scoring, and I need to look at myself in the mirror. In the end, there are consequences for being the worst team in the League. This is not what we strive to do here.”

On the loss
“You know, soccer is a cruel game. I thought everyone worked very hard tonight, but unfortunately it was not enough. [LA] is a good team and they played like it tonight. We just have to get back to work in training and make sure that we are ready for the next game.”

On United's Open Cup match on Wednesday, July 21
“Having an Open Cup game so soon after this loss is a good thing. We need to get back to work, that is the only way we will put these result behind us - by setting things right. We still have something to play for, and we all know how important the [Open Cup] is. If we win we are in the competition's semi-finals, so we are all going to work hard to make sure that happens.”

No comments: