MLS game #17: DCU 2 - KC 0

080208_Moreno_P.jpg

I wouldn't necessarily call that the prettiest game the team has played all year, but you can't argue with the fact that the effort was there from all thirteen players that put on the United kit tonight.  A goal each from the starting forwards and the first League shutout of the year for goalkeeper Zach Wells and the team.  A great result to build off of. 

We'll be back in a bit with some photos and post-game quotes. 

UPDATE:  Post game quotes below and a couple of photos on the Video & Pics page.  

D.C. UNITED HEAD COACH TOM SOEHN
On the team’s performance
That was probably one of my more satisfying games. It was nice to have a full week to work on things, especially with so many guys out, we wanted to make sure we maintained the discipline and work hard and make sure everyone took defending first. I don’t think we created as many chances but the dedication to work and get back behind the ball and competing was ten-fold better. And that’s what you need to get shutouts and obviously the shutout goes right along with it.
 
On who was good individually
I’m happy with a lot of guys. I said this before, we’ve thrown our young guys in tough situations and part of the growth process is that you get the experience and today a couple of guys stepped up and did a real good job. Ivan [Guerrero] showed his value, what he brings. He’s a tough worker and fits in with the dynamics of how you play. And Joe Vide stepped up and did a solid job in the middle. I thought competitively it was day and night [to last week].
 
On taking pressure off the defense
Not only take the pressure of the central defense but also give your flanks a little more room to get forward. We knew what Ivan [Guerrero] was about and him and having him and Fred having the ability to attack more obviously is going to make us a dangerous team. He did a great job of giving us some width.
 
On having so many new guys on the field
We had a week to work. Ivan [Guerrero] we didn’t have much time to work with but he’s got a great soccer intelligence. When you make decisions on guys you bring in, you try to see them in your environment and Ivan’s perfectly situated. For him to step in our environment it’s a perfect situation for him.
 
On signing a third goalkeeper
You always want competitions for spots and we’re going to bring another goalie in. It’s not the new goalie’s job, it’s not Zach’s job. It’s whoever wins the job. If he [Zach] keeps playing like that he’s going to keep it real competitive because today he made some game-savers. He was very sharp today.
 
On Pat Carroll
One of the things he did better today was when he won the ball he was clean and he made sure he that the balls were played into Jaime [Moreno]’s feet and Luci [Emilio]’s feet. He competed hard. He did a great job today. But again that’s the experience we’re talking about. He’s put in some tough spots but he’s grown. You start learning a lot about your young guys.
 
On looking ahead to League and Open Cup matches
Marc Burch is going to play a lot of minutes [against New York] because he can’t play in the Open Cup game. But we’re getting some guys back. I joked around today that there was a herd of guys running around the field getting healthy. It’s nice to see that we’re making progress on some of those guys and it will give us a few options. Obviously we’re going to have to be careful not to rush them back. Their fitness is going to struggle. Some of our young guys now gained some valuable experiences for situations just like this.
 
D.C. UNITED MIDFIELDER CLYDE SIMMS
On getting the win
It was great. We worked real hard this week especially at the end of the week on our shape in the back – and having Joe [Vide] in there helped a ton. He was great defensively. Any time you have a bunch of guys in there that are working hard and talking a lot it’s going to make it hard for the opposing team. I think that made a huge difference in the game tonight.
 
On Ivan Guerrero
I always knew he was a good player. Usually, I hate playing against him so it’s good to have him on the team now. I thought he was great as well.
 
On Jaime Moreno and team defense
What can you say? It’s Jaime. [He] Doesn’t really surprise me when he has performances like this. I think everyone did the job defensively, even Jaime and Luciano [Emilio] and I think that was the difference in the game. With our previous games we didn’t [defend] as a team and we did well not pushing too many guys forward on the attack. Fortunately it was a well-played game as a team and we got the results because of it.
 
D.C. UNITED FORWARD LUCIANO EMILIO
On the win
When the team scored first and we started to play better. When we play at home we need to score first.
 
On the Golden Boot race
Sometimes I think about it because I can win again the Golden Boot. Just one more goal to tie with Landon [Donovan]. I score first for the team. When our team wins, everybody’s happy. But I think I have a big chance to win the Golden Boot again.
 
D.C. UNITED DEFENDER MARC BURCH
On Pat Carroll’s performance
Pat [Carroll]’s a real physical guy and real athletic. He showed up and he’s battling for every play and doing really well.
 
On chemistry with Ivan Guerrero
It was good. He’s a hard worker; he’s a good player. He works hard to get open and I just fed him the ball. He looked real good out there working hard on the offense and getting back on defense.
 
On his assist on Jaime Moreno’s goal
Jaime’s good at headers, he’s good at flicking balls in. He had one in the first half that he almost flicked in. He made a good run and I was working a little bit [during the week] on getting the ball by the first guy and finally Jaime flicked one and it went in.
 
D.C. UNITED GOALKEEPER ZACH WELLS
On the game
I thought it was a good defensive performance by everyone. I thought it was a good organized defensive performance from everyone.  When a team works that hard it makes it easier when everyone can read plays and play off that offensively. We worked really hard defensively and stayed compact. I thought Joe Vide and Ivan [Guerrero] did a really good job coming in, made a difference for us.
 
On getting the first League shutout of the season
I thought ‘finally’. Finally. It was a long time coming. We’re just trying to get better every week and as a team we worked really well together. We were organized in the back. We played our guts out and it showed.
 
On the team’s performance
I think it was a complete performance. We worked really hard and made it a point to get guys behind the ball no matter what the score was and it showed. We still got a few goals, which says a lot about our attacking players. It was good because I felt like everyone defended and it wasn’t just about the attack. That’s the thing to do going forward.
 
KANSAS CITY WIZARDS HEAD COACH CURT ONALFO
On the game
Certainly, losing Josh [Wolff] the day before a game is an adjustment but every team has to deal with that. I thought we played a lackadaisical, not very sharp first half. I thought D.C. was by far the better team the first 45 minutes, so I was extremely disappointed in the first 45 minutes of play. Second half, I thought we came out very strong. Davy Arnuad has a chance a minute in, we have a corner kick where Jimmy [Conrad] has a free header and we’ve got a chance to tie the game and we kind of take the game to them.  I don’t know what the stats are but we for sure had a hell of a lot more shots than them in the second half.
 
On Jaime Moreno’s goal
I don’t know the exact minute of the free kick, but it was a hell of a goal  by Jaime [Moreno].  There’s no two ways about it – that’s a great goal. Our defender was in a pretty good position in terms of where he was defending it. Sometimes you have to take your hat off to a world-class goal.
 
On the loss
When you come out the way you did the first 45 minutes against a good team – with players like Moreno, Emilio and Fred – you set yourself up for a difficult night. So, I think our approach and our first half mentality ended up being the reason we lost the game.
 
KANSAS CITY WIZARDS DEFENDER JIMMY CONRAD
On Luciano Emilio and Jaime Moreno
Emilio is very direct in his play – he’s kind of like a bull in a china shop. And he does well to create space for himself.  If he got a half chance, I figured maybe he’d put it away. That’s why he was MVP last year and it seems he’s rounding back into form. Moreno is just crafty and you have to pay attention to him no matter where he is on the field.
 
On not scoring lately
We know we’ve been hard pressed to score consistently and we understand that playing good defenses – I mean that’s the key to any good team winning games, we know what’s where it starts and you know they turned a half chance into a goal and then we were fighting an uphill battle and tonight D.C. was just a better team.
 
KANSAS CITY WIZARDS DEFENDER MATT MARQUESS
On his Wizards debut
Curt [Onalfo] talked to me just before halftime and said to me I might get a chance in the second half and said just play confident and do what I can do and I thought I stuck to that pretty well, but it’s a tough game. They’re attacking core is real strong, real quick guys and caused a lot of problems in the back, but overall we had our chances to win we just couldn’t put it away.