IMAGE: 5.12 quotes

Post-Match Quotes | #DCvSKC

D.C. United, Head Coach Ben Olsen

Overall thoughts...

"I though there was real quality from us in the first half but we had trouble breaking through their last barrier. They're organized, well-coach and are disciplined when they turn over they ball. They were tough to score on. It was always going to take something special tonight to get a goal. We didn’t get frustrated with ourselves and we kept going after it. Paul [Arriola] made a terrific play." 

On the team's confidence going into Toronto and Houston...

“These were very important points to pick up. Especially after we hadn't been the sharpest lead leading up to the last two home games. To get six points going into this road trip gives us some confidence but we understand that. We are going to Toronto, a tough environment to play then we head to Houston. These are two of the best teams in the league right now so it’ll be a difficult challenge that the group will be looking forward to. We’ll need all of our guys to get through this because there is only two days rest in between each game.” 

On Paul Arriola’s performance...

"It's crucial for us to have a third and fourth attacking threat to take a little bit of focus off of Wayne [Rooney] and Lucho [Acosta]. Not only is he good from a quality standpoint, but it's his running off the ball and work rate. He stretches the defense and opens up space for other good players on our team. I also thought it was a really good performance from our defense to get a shutout. Steven [Birnbaum] and Frédéric [Brillant] were great. I thought Leo Jara also had a very good game and I enjoyed watching [Marquinhos] Pedroso in his first game."

On Marquinhos Pedroso debut...

“I thought he did well. He's a good defender and it is not easy coming into a brand new team and getting a start. There are relationships out there that haven’t necessarily been built yet. He does well with one-on-one situations and has the physicality. I thought his defensive shape overall was good for his first start. We are glad we picked him up and we are looking forward to him growing with this group.” 

D.C. United, Defender Steven Birnbaum

On the importance of the win...

“Really important, it was one of those games where we had a lot of chances that weren’t falling for us and then Paul comes up with an amazing goal, it was awesome to see him get that and we closed out the game 1-0 win we’ll take it.”

On keys to the game...

“We said at halftime the chances weren’t falling for us but they are going to come so we ended up sticking to our game plan and getting a 1-0 win. That is fine for us as long as we keep a shut out and get that goal.”

On upcoming road games...

“I think it makes these games a little bit easier for us, going up to Toronto on Wednesday, they are a tough team so knowing that we got a win at home is good and our road form is good as well so if we can continue that it would be great.”

D.C. United Forward, Wayne Rooney

On the match...

“I thought the first half we played well we got in dangerous positions but the final cross wasn’t quite there. We pressed well the second half, the game died down a little bit for both sides, not many opportunities getting created there were a few set pieces but great finish by Paul [Arriola]. Throughout the 90 minutes, it could have gone either way but I think we deserved to win.”

On Arriola’s goal...

“It was a lovely finish, he executed it fantastically. It was a big goal for us coming into this week with two tough away games coming up Wednesday and Saturday so winning today was important and gaining the three points.”

On travel schedule in MLS...

“Looking forward to it. I think people make a bit too much of it. It’s a flight Tuesday and a flight Thursday to Houston then the games over and you fly back. So it's two flights where you have to prepare and get ready for the game which is part of your job it is what you have to do so there is no complaints. Again when you got four kids at home you get used to flying with four kids then any flight is easy without them.”

On Arriola being a third option...

“I think Paul is a bit better than a 3rd option he is a fantastic player for us who gives us great energy he is a threat, great runner so I think it is strange because we are talking about Paul being the match winner but there were some many other things. I think Luciano’s work ethic running back at times was fantastic for us. It was a great team effort I think the first half was the best we have pressed as a team, the second half the game fizzled out a bit but there are a lot of positives tonight and Paul got the winning goal which was great for us.”

D.C. United Defender, Marquinhos Pedroso

On his debut...

“It was a great atmosphere even with the rain the fans were here supporting me it was a great feeling. I was waiting for this time I know this is a great team here with a lot of tradition so it was a great game we scored and it was the most important and we didn’t receive goals so that shows we are strong which is important and we have a lot of strong games now away so lets try to bring the three points back home. I felt great the most important for my part is to keep safe my side I think I did this against a very good player (Johnny) Russell there was a lot of duels it was nice to see him again. I played against him twice last year with FC Dallas. I felt great the teammates received me very well supported me and then let's move on. "

On road games...

“We know its two good teams and to play there it is very difficult so if we bring two wins away from DC would be a big step for us in the league.”

D.C. United Midfielder, Paul Arriola

On the goal celebration...

“Obviously, my t-shirt is for my mother. On Mother’s Day, it’s the least I could do. I thought of something creative. For my father, the goal was a big goal. It’s tough, it’s tough losing a parent. You think of him every single day. Different things, different circumstances, so I thought I’d give him one today.”

On the overall result...

“I think we just stuck with what we needed to do. We continued to create chances, I think the first half gave us a lot of confidence. Finishing was off, but we were getting into the final third and creating chances and were behind their defensive mid, I’d say. So, I think it was collectively a great team effort and didn’t stop going. Obviously, we’d be disappointed if we didn’t get the win, you know, at 0-0 I don’t think we would have walked away very happy. But thankfully we were able to get a goal and three points.”

On his goal...

“I think, it just allows me to be in more of an attacking starting position. Constantly around [Luciano Acosta], around Wayne [Rooney], being able to give the team some width and some depth when it comes to runs in behind and stretching the defense. I think that’s one of the greatest things that I can bring to this team is to bring a dynamic that we need at times. Today, I was able to get in quite a bit and create some crosses and some chances. Felt good about that, but obviously felt better about the goal.”

“I had a couple of chances on my right side, on my normal side, when I was able to cut in and I didn’t see the ball how I wanted to see it. It was a little bit in front of me at times, a little bit far back, Sinovic was on me. I’ll have to look it over, but in those circumstances, I didn’t feel too good. And I think it was a ball that I ended up losing, and I think it might have been one of the ones that I cut in and I should have taken the shot and I went to far pass and then I just kind of kept my run going, pressured a little bit, stayed on the left side, for maybe two minutes. So, I don’t know what it was, able to get the ball after Russell [Canouse] won it, gave it to Wayne [Rooney], who gave it to me, and then at that point I knew I was going inside and I think it was Hasler who was still coming back, so when I went inside it threw him off, made good contact, and that’s a goal you dream about.”

On the aim to score more goals...

“Yeah, 100%. That’s the goal. I think, this time last year, I don’t even think I had a goal. So, it feels good to have three so far in the season. But more importantly, today was a complete team performance. In the end, it’s not about who wins it, it’s which team wins it. That’s the most important thing for me, sometimes it’s me, sometimes it’s Wayne [Rooney], other times it’s Lucho, it could be anyone. But more importantly than me and my stats, it’s the team effort and to know we get three points and keep atop the Eastern Conference, which lots of the Eastern teams are playing well right now.”

D.C. United Midfielder, Russell Canouse

On Paul’s goal...

“It was unbelievable. I’m super happy that he’s on the scoresheet two games in a row. As a team, it was a good collective effort. It took a little bit of patience and discipline, but it paid off.”

On the stadium atmosphere after a special goal...

“It was unbelievable. Once it left his foot, we had the feeling that it was going in. A lot of the flow in the second half was a little slow, it didn’t feel like we were really going to get a full chance. But we won the ball quickly in midfield and played it forward, found Paul isolated and then an unbelievable finish for him. It was a really good atmosphere after that.”

On returning to a back four...

“I mean I was involved last weekend when we played that formation [three centerbacks], I thought the team has done well with the adjustment. It gives us a Plan B, something that teams don’t expect. I felt tonight that Marquinhos [Pedroso] filled in very well. He did an unbelievable job on the left side and you can tell the team is comfortable in that 4-2-3-1. But that three in the back also gives us that good option that teams don’t expect.”

On getting three points before going on the road...

“It was huge. We know we have two tough games against Toronto and Houston. We need to take it one game at a time. We know Toronto is playing well, Houston as well, so just to get three points tonight and go into those two road games with confidence is a very good feeling.”

On squad rotation during upcoming road stretch...

“I’m not too completely sure but I know we have options. Everyone who has come in has done well, filled roles we need. I think the team is playing with confidence, which gives us a good option, whether we play a different formation or stay in this 4-2-3-1. Either way, I think we’ll be good going into this road trip.”

Sporting KC Head Coach, Peter Vermes

On the overall performance...

“I thought we did more than enough to come away with one point. Disappointed for the guys cause they worked hard, they were organized. They didn’t give too much away, we created some good stuff here. I think that the no-call on the goal, even though I thought the goal was hit really well by Arriola, the no-call I think gave a hesitation to the game when everybody expected it. But, you know, when you’re in the place that we are right now sometimes that’s the way things go and you just have to keep fighting through it.”

On handling the pressure...

“I think they started out really quick in the first half but we didn’t break. And then, I thought as the game started from the first half, as the game evolved it got more and more comfortable, certain guys got more and more confident, and that’s happening even from a week ago to this week. So, from that perspective it’s good. It’s good going forward. And we created a few chances too. Maybe just a little bit unlucky. Hamid had a good save on the corner kick.”

On the upcoming home stretch...

“Every game is important, only from the perspective that we have to stay within the pack. Where the difficulty is, is that we have to keep getting players back. Cause even still, the players that we have playing right now, the difficulty there is that they’re not getting a break. And they need a break.”

Sporting KC Defender, Seth Sinovic

On the overall performance...

“I thought we deserved a little bit better from that game. I thought we put together a pretty solid performance. It was just a great goal and a great finish. There’s always things we can be better on but we gotta build off this. Obviously upset and disappointed with the result but we gotta build off the good things and take it into the next game.”

On the defensive performance...

“I thought all three guys alongside me were incredible tonight. I thought Graham Smith made some huge plays, Barath made some big plays, Halser had a great game and was toughing out an old charlie horse in the back. So, I think all three guys put together a really solid performance. Disappointed for everybody not to get the result but we gotta build off of it.”

On the upcoming home stretch...

“It’s huge. We gotta take points from these games. We obviously struggled to get points the last few games but this is a huge stretch for us, hopefully, build off the experience we got here, hopefully, get some healthy bodies back, and grow from this.”

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