“I think we performed really well. I think a lot gets made about the preseason… the important thing for us was the fitness work which we can improve on from last year in the start of the season. We worked hard all preseason and fitness levels were good. Once you’re back here at Audi Field, the crowd behind you, we put performances in… the Montreal game was a good game for us as players, coaching staff… we responded really well tonight.”
“He (Lucho Acosta) has been great. This week he’s been fantastic when he’s come back. When the transfer didn’t go through I was a bit surprised he was on a flight straight back to meet up with us. He wanted to play in the game the next day and ben wouldn’t let him. His attitude has been fantastic… I think he knows himself and knows he’s got to perform well… if he’s gonna to get a move to a big club in Europe he has to perform… it’s as simple as that. There are goals for him and we obviously all want him to stay. At the end of the day, we understand if a move happens… For now, we’re delighted he’s here. He’s a fantastic player and hopefully, he keeps performing for us.”
On momentum from last season:
On resetting his focus:
“When the Paris offer appeared and I went, I was still a player of this club and was always a player of the club. When it didn’t go through, and I came back I tried to be as mature as possible and responsible as possible to give everything to this organization.”
Atlanta United Goalkeeper Brad Guzan
On D.C. United having Atlanta’s number:
“We weren’t great with the ball, we seemed to not be able to find the way to unlock their backline in terms of creating some chances. We weren’t as sharp as we can be. And they’re a good team. Ultimately, the goal before halftime - questionable decision whether it’s a corner or not. I’ve heard from numerous people, maybe you’ve seen the replay, but the corner before that led to the goal wasn’t a corner. From top to bottom, we weren’t our best tonight, but we pick ourselves up and we go again Wednesday.”
On the lack of sharpness:
“Playing in this league, it’s competitive, it’s difficult. It’s a long season; there’s no need to panic. These types of games you can look back at the video to see how to get better.”
On Acosta’s goal:
“The shot just moved away from me and I was almost handcuffed and couldn’t react. I’ll take that one, those things happen, unfortunately. Hopefully, I’ve got more saves than mistakes in this long season. He hit it well and pure, and it was moving a bit, but I expect to save that nine times out of ten.
Atlanta United Head Coach Frank de Boer
How far out do you look when you make some of those choices:
"No, we already know five games out that this is our ID and our plan with them. You can also listen to the players and it’s the first home game and it is only two days rest we have to see how the players are feeling. Sometimes you have to make those choices but that is why we have the roster that we do."
Frank on how the trip to Costa Rica impacted the team:
"It was really our first game and the circumstances in Costa Rica did not help us. It was turf, it was really awful and they play almost every week on the turf. We really showed that if we are playing on a good pitch we can really play very good futbol. What I saw there were not normal conditions, it is not too hot when we are playing in Montreal so I have confidence we learned from the first experience so we have to have good results but also not underestimate Montreal. They are an aggressive team with aggressive players I think they are very tedious and on top of the league, they have good form and good shape so we have to be at our best to get good results for sure."
Frank on Shay’s performance and not being able to get through the first pass:
"Yeah, sometimes you hesitate, it could have been previous issues, maybe with his height, it is more difficult for him. He was overall very good and showed a lot of confidence."
Are there any worries on the players needing rest:
"No, of course, they got tired that’s normal, but I saw that everyone was fighting until the last second to get good results it means we are in good health."