Post-match quotes: D.C. United 1 - Philadelphia Union 0
D.C. United Head Coach Ben Olsen
On the Union:
“Their energy was good, but soccer was even better. They caused a lot of problems with people who had freedom to roam. I give them a lot of credit, but our team defended the box well to get the win. They are at home and are buzzing, we have to get these results. They are key to the season.”
On D.C. United:
“The little bit of the layoff had us a little rusty, but we will hopefully the soccer stuff will get better. Branko (Boskovic) had an unbelieveable free kick. I was happy that Chris [Pontius] was able to get the goal.”
“It wasn’t much of an energy issue in the first half. I think we gave them too much respect. It is a team that if you really get after them. However, if you step off they are a team that can have possession and keep the ball.”
D.C. United midfielder Nick DeLeon
On the match:
“It was a big match for us defensively, we stood together, allowed no goals. We had a great set [piece] from Branko [Boskovic] and was able to get that goal from Chris (Pontius). As a whole it was a good team performance. They were bringing it and were all over us, but we stood together to get the good team result. It was pretty ugly for us, but we got the three points.”
D.C. United goalkeeper Bill Hamid
On the match:
“They [the Union] were finding seams early on, but credit to the back line they came up big tonight, whether it was blocking crosses, or getting the clearances. It is very important to get these results on the road. We want to stay on top of the East, so we need to get these results. “
On the team's traveling supporters:
“The fans care, they are passionate, they want to see a D.C. United that is having success. They have had a lot of success in the past and want it to continue.”
Philadelphia Union Head Coach John Hackworth
On the match:
"If we play that way every week, we’re gonna win a lot of games. So, I’m disappointed but I take a lot of positives out of this game."
Should the set piece before the goal have been given? What did you see?
“I thought it was a great tackle. At some point, those situations are gonna chance for us, so…You can’t control it, you can’t do anything about it. We gotta defend that, the restart after the fact. We had a couple chances in the back of the net… That changes the game for us.
Will you stick with this lineup?
“I would. I need time to think about it. I’m very emotionally charged right now as you can imagine, but I’m going to look at the tape tomorrow. My initial thoughts are that they played the way the Union wants to play. The fans want that. The front office, our ownership, they want that kind of energy. And that was fantastic, so we’ll evaluate it, see how our guys are feeling…next Saturday here I expect you’ll see a lot of the same.
Why didn’t we see Gomez? Was it because he was away at WC qualifying?
Partly. He got hurt in Dallas. He never fully recovered from that injury with the national team when he was with Panama. He got released yesterday afternoon; he didn’t play. He has not played a game since Dallas, which is quite a long break, so if the game had presented itself and there was an opportunity…but obviously when you get behind, and we had all the momentum, I didn’t think there was a way they would get down near us. I thought either we were going to give up a foul but they got it, and that was that.
What’s the advantage of having Amobi in the back?
“We’re trying to play out of the back right now and Amobi’s very composed on the ball, he’s got great feet, and he’s hard as nails too. [He] just gives us a lot. When you can control the tempo and fight for the next one, especially early in the game, we did a great job playing out the back even under some big pressure by D.C., and Amobi is a big part of that.
Do the forwards have the predatory instinct you’re looking for?
“Yes. Absolutely. It’s just a matter of execution now. You don’t create that many chances against that quality of a team. This a cruel game, and this is feeling very cruel right now because I don’t think we deserved to lose this game. But, absolutely, those guys are very good, and they’re all young. There are young players out there and they need more chances. They need to be able to finish in those kinds of games.
Where is Freddy [Adu]’s best position?
“I think Freddy’s done a good job when we play him on that right side he’s very creative. It’s been good for us. I think the final ball was missing tonight. We talked about it at halftime…On that one where Antoine hits the post, he’s got Jack McInerney sitting wide open by himself on the six and if he rolls that back it’s a tap in. Some of those are decisions, some of those are execution but they’re going to come.”
Is the team looking at getting a new center back in the transfer window?
Sure. Absolutely, I mean that’s a need for us but if Amobi Okugo can play the way he did tonight then I don’t think there’s much need for us to bring anybody in. I mean, Amobi’s a 20-year-old guy who’s been in this culture three years. We have the youngest roster in the league and there’s a reason…if they play like that they deserve to play every game.
Lift from Antoine?
“He’s a little diamond isn’t he? He’s a spark plug. He’s dangerous. He stretches people and he’s deceptively tougher than them too. Now we need to get him to find that last ball a little better and finish, and I think that’s going come for sure.
What were your emotions like before the game?
“What a great day all the way around. The fans were fantastic; the players were awesome beforehand. It was a great night for the Philadelphia Union in a lot of ways. And I was excited. I was confident, relaxed…At this point my job becomes managing the game. We prepared…the players need to know what they’re doing and I thought they did, and they went and tried to do that, and so, it was all good."
Philadelphia Union forward Antoine Hoppenot
On the attempt that hit the post:
“I got the ball, I don’t know how it started but I found myself in with the keeper and he slip toward Jack (McInerney) and I didn’t hit it as well as I wanted to and it hit the post.”
On frustrating amount of opportunities:
“The whole game I felt we had a lot more opportunities and controlled the game and we were just unlucky to not get a goal. I can think of a few opportunities we should have scored. I know I should have had a few and it’s just frustrating.”
On positive offensive appearance:
“It’s nice to see it, we always knew we could do it. We knew we had the skills and players to be a force on offense. It doesn’t come to a surprise to us and a great show for the fans to see and hopefully next game we will score two or three.”
On skill of being near the goal:
“They just tell me to go out there and run and I go out there and I just keep running. I just keep trying to find myself near the goal side and if the ball is near the goal I can put it in.”
Philadelphia Union midfielder Jack McInerney
On getting back out on the field:
“Coach Hack gave me the opportunity and I told me during the week that I would begin playing a little more and I’m grateful for that.”
On reaction of starting the game:
“There is a bit of relief. I saw in the press conference that he said they are going to start changing some faces in the starting line-up and I just hoped I was one of those faces. It felt good and it was a confidence booster.”
Philadelphia Union defender Sheanon Williams
On referee's call on the goal:
“It was a tough call and the referee’s decision and we have to respect that. We have to do better matching up on the free kick, especially that late in the game and it’s just tough to go out late in the game especially when you play so well. I feel we had two or three clear cut chances and we need to just put them in the back of the net and put that game away from the start.”