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June 17, 2009 at 11:39 PM

Sounders FC 3, DC United 3, postgame quotes

Head Coach Sigi Schmid

(On whether the game went how he expected it would)

“Like I said yesterday, the day before the game, it was going to be a game of chances.

Today was an exciting game, for sure, and there were a lot of chances. Obviously, neither team won. Overall, I’m biased because I’m the Seattle coach.They had enough chances–maybe four–and they scored three out of four.

Obviously we tried to make some changes in the second half to get some fresh legs on because a couple guys, I thought, were tired. Even though they were still having an impact, the momentum of the game was shifting, and even with the changes, we still dropped in too much and gave them a little too much of the ball. Hats off to them. They played with a lot of energy and they kept pushing the issue, but once Montero scored the goal to make it 3-1, I think we had three good chances: Freddie Ljungberg’s chance where he was in, Sebastien’s [Le Toux] chance where he was in, I’m trying to think if [Steve] Zakuani had one, or Nate [Jaqua] had one. I think we had three good chances to make it 4-1. If you make it 4-1, the game’s over. We close up shop and we all go home happy. But we didn’t do that.”

(On the importance of Ljungberg being able to go back and forth interchanging with the forwards and mids) “That’s what we’ve tried to do. We’ve tried to create a system of play. We didn’t have a preseason where we had Ljungberg and Montero playing together. So we’ve been trying to figure this out as we’ve been playing in the season. I think them being able to figure it out right now, and balancing each other off, has certainly improved. The interchanging, I thought, in the first half was very good. In the second half, I think as we got a little bit tired, Freddie Ljungberg sat up high and made Nate come underneath him a little more. That is probably not the ideal way to play. Now you got Nate trying to play balls through to Freddie, instead of Freddie playing balls through to Nate and to Montero. It threw us off a little bit. But it’s getting better and better every game, and their ability to place-change with each other has improved.”

(On whether the team came out of tonight’s game all right physically) “Yeah. Obviously, it’s a tiring game. It’s an emotionally draining game because of the way the result went at the end, so it’s more emotionally draining than maybe it is physically draining. But we got to regroup. We got to see where we’re at with the wounded. I think we’ve come out of it pretty well. Evans had a little bit of a shoulder [injury] on that one play where he got taken down. And [James] Riley, I think, might’ve rolled his ankle a bit. Aside of that, I think we came through okay.”

(On why Zakuani didn’t start) “It was just, I didn’t think he could go three times, 60 or 70 this week. I thought by him coming off the bench…[Le Toux] has a better engine. He’s fitter. So we decided to go that way. Obviously, we were playing well. I thought Zakuani could’ve come in and really put a mark on the game in the last 30, but he’s a young man. He was probably a little bit disappointed not starting. I think that reflected in his play a little bit.”

(On how he felt about the team’s defense overall) “You know, I’m disappointed in some of our final actions of defending, but when you look at it overall, you say, ‘How many chances did we really give up defensively?’ In the first half, we really didn’t give up much of anything, but we gave up a goal. So obviously, that’s not good. And in the second half, I think we gave away possession in midfield. So it’s more a concern of us bunkering in a little too deep. That’s something that somebody’s got to trigger out on the field, because as you can tell I’m pretty hoarse as it is, so I can’t trigger it from the bench.

And obviously, we gave up a couple of goals. It’s still a matter of, in decisive moments, we have to be better. We got to close down the cross. We got to make sure we keep with our marks. We got to make sure we don’t get dropped in too deep so they can spread the ball around on us. We got to be a little bit better that way, but we don’t want to play like a rock (or was it Iraq?), and just play with a line of five and a line of four.”

(On Osvaldo Alonso’s performance) “Alonso, he was a starting player for us before he got hurt, so it’s what I expect from him. He’s got a good shot. He certainly showed that today. He’s probably our best defender at being able to recover the ball, break up plays. I thought he did a good job of that overall. So I was very pleased with how he did his first game back. We’ll have to evaluate how he is fitness-wise now, going into Saturday.”

F Steve Zakuani

(On why he thinks he didn’t go in until the second half) “We’ve got three games this week, and it’s probably that you have to rest one [forward], and today I was the guy to rest. It was a bit different, but no big deal.”

(On what he wanted to do in the game when he came in) “You just come on and you kind of see what the game gives you. Most of it, I think, is to get running right away, to catch up to the speed of the play, and if you get a good opportunity, then you take it. If the game’s open, I’m going to try and do what I usually do.”

D Tyrone Marshall

(On the ball that hit him and went into the Sounders’ goal) “I didn’t have control over where the ball was going, which was unfortunate. It went in. But we dominated the game. We kept plugging away. Opportunities dropped for them…We need to do a better job of managing the game, taking our time when we need to, and just manage the game. We’d come out of here with three points instead of one, because we dominated the game. The difference between us getting three points and coming away with one is just a foul here and there, kicking the ball out of bounds. Yeah, it happened. They kept plugging. They scored on my goal. We just have to pick up our heads and move on. It’s one of those things where we let three points get away tonight. We have New York on Saturday and we just have to get back on the pitch and go back to work and try to get three points on the road.”

D.C. United Quotes

TOM SOEHN- Head Coach

(On making another late comeback) “Overall I was a little disappointed in some of the performances on our side. We gave them a lot opportunities and in environment like this you can’t afford to do that. Again the group was resilient and the guys who came in impacted in a big way. We fought back to get a point on the road.”

(On why his team is able to comeback on the road) “I think some of it is the guys we are bringing in off the bench. Bringing in them late in the game they have the ability to break teams down and it happens a lot.”

(On what happened to his team defensively in the first half) “I think we let the environment takes its toll on us. We still have a few inexperienced guys and it is the first time they have been into a place like this. The energy Seattle brought, we backed down quite a bit. When you’re playing on the road you need all 11 guys to play well and we were way below that tonight. But there were certain guys that I would give credit to who fought and competed.”

(On Josh Wicks helping save this team) “For Josh’s sake I don’t think he is at fault for any of the goals. We broke down defensively and a lot of the chances they had came from the breakdown defensively. That is a little discouraging.”

CHRIS PONTIUS-Forward

(On his goal tonight) “I cut back to my right a couple of times and I knew they were expecting that. [Tyrone] Marshall was on my right and when you put balls in dangerous spots good things can happen. Obviously their defender couldn’t do anything about it, the ball just went in.”

(On how the team is able to comeback on the road) “We talked about chemistry all year and we all like each other and have a great locker room. We just kept battling today and a couple of shots here and there. Things went our way.”

(On adjusting the atmosphere to tonight’s game) “Yeah, especially after their first goal, the momentum changed. It allowed their fans to get into it and it is a loud stadium. I don’t think many of us have played in anything like that, I know I haven’t. It was definitely something we had to adjust to. In the second half we calmed down a little bit.”

JOSH WICKS- Goalkeeper

(On having a sense his team would make a comeback) “I always think we are going to come back. Our players are good enough and our team has the heart. The stadium was very loud today, my teammates could hardly hear me. I always feel we are going to comeback.”

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