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June 21, 2010 at 3:02 PM

Sounders FC coach Sigi Schmid quotes on Monday

(Did you watch the World Cup match this morning?) “Yeah, I thought it was OK. Difficult game with the red card that the referee handed out, and Switzerland was very lucky at the end not to equalize 1-1. Honduras might become the goal-differential team in the group, which is not a good thing to be. But I’m sure from that standpoint the last game for Switzerland should be very interesting because they’ve got to go a little bit offensively and create more goals and so forth, so it should be interesting to watch Blaise.”

(On watching W.C. games…) “A lot of times you just watch them as a coach. Although I watch them as a fan when I watch the U.S., I watch them as a fan when I watch Germany. So those are probably the two countries that I watch as a fan. All the rest of them you watch more or less as a coach. As it gets closer to the semifinals, quarterfinals, you get a favorite team and watch with a little more emotion as well.”

(On playing in three competitions this summer…) “Staying healthy is important. Managing training properly, making sure that you’ve got recovery intermixed with the actual training times and then just a matter of doing a little bit of squad rotation. You got to mix guys. Some guys seem to deal all right with playing game after game. They are able to take on that load. Some are different body compositions and for them, taking on a heavy, heavy load of games is not the best option. A lot of times it comes to individual decision so it’s not like, ‘Oh, Sigi must think this guy is a better player. He’s playing him all the time.’ It’s sometimes somebody just has the physical capacity to do it while the other guy maybe doesn’t. It takes management of your squad rotation and proper management of training.”

(On playing Philadelphia Union…) “Obviously they are going to come into the game highly motivated. We’ve been able to meet Philadelphia twice under good circumstances for them. One, the first game of the year where they came to our place, which is difficult, but still it’s their first game and nobody knows anything about them so they were a mystery to everybody. Now we play them in what should be their most emotional game of the year from a standpoint of opening up their stadium. So we have to be prepared. We have to be sharp at the very beginning. We can’t get caught up in the crowd with them, but we are used to big crowds so it makes it a little bit easier for us in that regard. And the other thing is how hot it is going to be? How much is humidity going to be there? So we have to deal with that factor as well because we really haven’t played any games yet this year in humidity. We’re training hard right now and we will ease off as the week goes on and be ready to go on Sunday.”

(On how Union have changed since the opening game…) “Obviously they’re probably displeased with some of the results. They’ve been in every game. The difference top to bottom in MLS is pretty tight. I think they have settled more on a system of play at this stage. They’ve got Moreno and Le Toux who have formed a partnership up front. So from that standpoint, they’ve evolved. They know what their back four is even though Orozco won’t play against us because he got red carded but they have had a pretty standard back four as well. So they know some of the pieces to their puzzle at this stage and it’s a little bit easier to prepare for them as a result.”

(On Brad Evans’ injury in training…) “It’s just his knee. He’s got a thing in his knee that sometimes locks on him. It just locked up on him today, so we hope it’ll unlock. And it’s probably something that hopefully he’ll get through the season with and the offseason we can get in there and scrape it or whatever they need to do. It’s nothing major. We know exactly what it is. It’s just a matter of it unlocking.”

(On Nate Jaqua…) “Jaqua is to the point where I think he can play some off the bench. We are going to have to see how he comes along today. Yesterday’s practice, fitness-wise and running-wise he was OK. His touch wasn’t spectacular because it was full tempo, which he hasn’t been into. Today it was already much better. You could see him settle in. He scored a good goal in the goals-in-tight game. It’ll get better each day, but he should be somebody we can consider for the eighteen, for sure.”

(On Blaise Nkufo’s play in the World Cup…) “I thought it was OK. When he was playing with Frei up there at the beginning of the game they had their regular partnership going, although Chile is a very defensively active team so they made it difficult for Switzerland to really get into a rhythm. But then with the red card, then it changed everything. Then Frei’s got to go wide, he’s up high on his own, they have to take Frei out. So it became a more difficult game for him as a result of that. Again, he did a good job of holding up the ball, allowing his team to connect off of him. A role of a player is a little different on every team and his role for them is a guy who’s going to hold up and put others into play and not necessarily be the guy who gets put into play at the end himself. But that’s something we expect more from him when he gets here.”


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