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Post-game quotesheet: United vs. San Jose

MLS 2009 QUOTESHEET
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 27, 2009 – D.C. UNITED 1, SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES 2

D.C. UNITED HEAD COACH TOM SOEHN
On the game

Obviously it’s thoroughly disappointing. We had every opportunity to run away with the game in the first half. We were unable to put our chances away and any team you keep around it’s going to come back to haunt you. We came out flat in the second half, on a day – any day you can’t afford it – but on a day when we’re trying to make the playoffs, it’s thoroughly disappointing. I have to go back and evaluate whether I had the right blend of guys on the field.

On what was different in the second half
Second half we addressed a lot at halftime, talked about shoring up our shape a little bit better and I thought our energy was terrible in the second half. They came out with a little bit of bite and we didn’t adjust to it. We kind of just stayed in a lull. It wasn’t until after they scored that we put in some legs and realized we had to get back in the game. It’s disappointing [because] it comes at a time when we’re desperate for points to get in the playoffs and we sure didn’t show that urgency.

On Wicks’ injury
Anytime someone goes down it’s disappointing. But regardless, we have to understand the circumstances and fight.

On Kocic’s performance
He was thrown into a tough spot. The free kick – I think he’s got to see it a little bit better. The rest, the other one that happened in front of him I think there was a lot of traffic. Milos [Kocic] wasn’t the problem; I think ahead of him we didn’t do a good job.

On whether Gomez should have started
Irregardless we needed energy and we needed someone with a little bite. Lots of times we call on the same guys, someone’s got to come in and energize the team. Although it’s no excuse, we need to energize ourselves. We came out in the second half flat and we came out flying in the first half so that was disappointing.

On looking ahead
We have to turn around and play on Wednesday [a Champions League game] – obviously that’s an important game – get through that and readjust for Chivas [next Saturday]. That’s going to be a vital game now. We put ourselves in a bad spot by slipping two home games. We’ve talked about this home stretch but talking about it doesn’t mean nothing if you don’t finish through and get your points. We let ourselves down and we have to find a way out of it.

D.C. UNITED MIDFIELDER SANTINO QUARANTA
On the game

It’s devastating but in the end we didn’t finish the game well. We came out in the second half and it was a letdown and for the first 15 minutes we let them back in the game. It just wasn’t good, it’s not good.

On his performance
Try to do your job; it’s not about individuals anymore. I can’t speak for anybody else, you know? I just try my best. Whatever happens, we try as a team, we keep fighting and that’s the best I can do.

On the first half
The majority of the guys played Thursday [against Marathon in the Champions League], we came out and looked a little tired, I don’t know why. I think the game looked so easy to us the first 45 minutes of the game, the first half, that I think that we thought we were just going to go out and keep doing what we were doing. It seemed like they didn’t touch the ball in the first half and we could do whatever we wanted. We come out in the second half and they had Alvarez who changed the game. It just wasn’t good enough and that’s devastating, this loss. I don’t know, from here…It’s just tough to get over this one.

D.C. UNITED DEFENDER LAWSON VAUGHN
On his performance

I thought I did well the last few games. It’s unfortunate we didn’t get the result tonight. We let them hang around a little too much.

On looking ahead
Yeah you know, when you get down to the last few games, every game is important. All the teams in the standings are tight so we need to come out with the mentality that we can’t give them anything. I think we gave them way too much. I think in the second half we came a little too flat, but that’s something that we can change.

On playing against his former team Chivas USA
If I’m lucky to get picked for that match, it’s going to be exciting. I know a lot of the players; I’m familiar with them. Kljestan’s been playing on the left for them, I used to play on the right with him so I know their tendencies and stuff. I think it will be a good match.

D.C. UNITED GOALKEEPER JOSH WICKS
On his injury

As soon as – before I hit the ground, it stuck out of place. I was trying to wait for it as long as possible because it didn’t go back in, it was just sitting there. The worst pain of my life, and I was trying not to move because I didn’t know if I moved if it was going to snap or what was going to happen.

On the recovery
I have no idea how much time [it will take]. Doc says it went back in pretty fast. [I’ll have to] do a lot of rehab and do all the treatment and if I can continue to play, then play. Take it easy and see how it goes.

On the game
It was a game that we needed to win. It was a game we should have won. But you know, you have a team that’s playing hard defensively and doing what they have to do. I was making saves and stuff but we gave them too many chances to score.

SAN JOSE HEAD COACH FRANK YALLOP
On winning their first game on the road this year

We’ve been very close in a lot of the games this year, but we had not quite gotten it done. I’m really proud of the way we’ve not lost faith in the way we can play away from home. And then to see the game out against a D.C. side that was pushing forward and had chances. Obviously, they missed a couple at the end, but I thought our guys really stuck to the task at hand

On strategy
Halftime, we’ve made some adjustments before and I think they really worked and today was the same thing. I think we went out to try to keep it, not 0-0 up to halftime, but try to make sure we’re nice and solid defensively and then see how the game pans out. But I think putting Arturo [Alvarez] on made a big difference to our team. He came on, was quick. He gave Ryan Johnson a bit more space to run around. I think Chris Wondolowski did a great job out wide for us. So all in all, I’m really happy with the overall half performance, not just with the players like Cannon who comes on and does a fine job in goal. All in all, I’m happy.

On Ryan Johnson
I haven’t seen the replay, but from all accounts it was onside. Ryan [Johnson]’s done really well. He had a great start to the season scoring for us when we weren’t playing very well to be honest, but he kept going. He had a little bit of a break out of the team about 3 or 4 games ago and now he’s come back to the team and looks refreshed, and really ready to go and injury-free. He had a bit of a sore shoulder, so really, really happy for him. He’s a great kid and he works hard. I thought he had a good game tonight.

SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES FORWARD RYAN JOHNSON
On the game

We just stayed in it and as the game went on more space opened up for us and a couple of subs patched the game. We put away our chances. And we also had an awful lot so the luck kind of fell our way today.

On winning on the road
It shows that we’re a good team. We’re a tough team and, you know, people will find this out, we don’t give up and keep fighting for every point that we can get because we’re fighting for our lives here. We stick together.

On his play
There was a size difference in the back with them against myself. The balls crossed in and headers, I mean they took one away from me in the first half. They took another one away from me with the deflection with the keeper getting hurt when he landed awkwardly. You know, I could have had three today and the ref just took some away from me today.

On his goal
I kind of anticipated the ball was going to hit the post and when it did it kicked to me pretty fast, but I was anticipating that it was going to come out to me. So the way the ball landed, I saw that I had an opportunity so I did a little diving header straight away. I just concentrated and made sure I got everything onto the ball and that it went to the back of the net.

SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES MIDFIEDLER RAMIRO CORRALES
On winning on the road

I think it’s our first win on the road this year. I think the last two games that the team has played really, really well. A little bit unlucky on Colorado, I think we deserved to win there. We knew it was going to be a tough one today in D.C. They have a good team, but I think our shape was good. We got the win and that’s what we wanted.

On Arturo Alvarez
He helped us a lot in the second half. He brought a big spark to this team and that’s why I think the second half was so much better for us. I think the team played much better.

On the second half
I think we moved the ball a little bit better than in the first half. When Arturo [Alvarez] came in it helped a lot. He held the ball pretty good and we could play off him. That helped today.

On the end of the game
We just packed it in. The last two games, against Colorado they scored in the last minute and it was in the back of my mind at least. Please don’t score in the last minute again. They put people forward and they put three or four people up there and everyone is pushing forward, so we just packed it in and defended well.

Broadcasting and P.A. Request: When speaking of the organization, please refer to the team as either “D.C. United” or “United,” but not “the D.C. United” or “the United.” We appreciate your cooperation.

Doug Hicks, dhicks@dcunited.com, (202) 587-5448,
Boris Flores, bflores@dcunited.com, (202) 587-5452,
Kyle Sheldon, ksheldon@dcunited.com, (202) 587-5450 or
Cristina Cruz, ccruz@dcunited.com, (202) 587-5440