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July 18, 2010 at 4:19 PM

Sounders FC 1, Celtic 2 — postgame Seattle player quotes

BLAISE NKUFO, forward

(Thoughts on debut?) “Yes, I’m happy. I finally played my first game with my new team and my new teammates. It was fun. When you arrive like that, it’s always difficult, but finally I could play and now I can move on and focus on the next game.”

(On playing with new teammates, e.g. Montero/Zakuani) “We are going to work together on the field. I like to play one-two, two-touch. We have some time. It was our first game and we showed some good movement still today. The more games we play together, the better it will be.”

(Style of play in MLS) “I never compare the leagues or the teams because it changes a lot, but this team can be a good team. There’s a few things we can work on to get better, but we try to keep possession and that’s good.”

(On preparation) “Yes, it was my first 60 minutes in two weeks. It’s one step out of the process. I’m on my plan. I know it takes game training, but I just follow my plan.”

(Thoughts on the field turf?) “In Holland, we have a team, Heracles, they play on artificial too, and they won almost all of their games and I hope we’re going to do the same here. Because when you’re not used to playing on it, it’s always difficult. With time everything will be good.”

DAVID ESTRADA, midfielder

(On the goal) “Sigi asked me to give a spark, so I knew the first opportunity I was going to get, I was going to take it. Fortunately it went in.”

(On second chance off the post) “(It was) off Zakuani, yeah. He did a good job doing a combination with Roger, and he laid it off for me, but unfortunately I think the keeper got a touch on it.”

(Is it weird being on IR and playing?) “Yeah, it’s something that Sigi talked to me about. I’m still eligible for U.S. Open Cup and CONCACAF, so that’s something I’m looking forward to, and hopefully they can give me an opportunity.”

(On Boss’ ejection) “I think it was very unlucky, especially because it’s a friendly. Someone wants to see a good game. They paid to see a good game. To see Terry Boss (ejected) so early, it was really unlucky. But everyone pulled together and we tried to cover as much ground as we could and the defenders did a good job.”

(On mentality of pushing forward a man down) “Sigi just told us, just because we’re a man down doesn’t mean we’re going to lay down and take more goals. It meant that we just had to work a little harder and make a good show for the crowd.”

(On Jennings) “I think he did a really good job, especially off that free kick. We were all kind of holding our breath there. He did a really good job throughout the whole game. But yeah, you could tell he was a little bit nervous, especially being in front of 40,000. It was a pretty big professional debut for him.”

JORDAN JENNINGS, goalkeeper

(On having to go into the game) “I was definitely surprised. The ref made a bad decision and I was forced into action. However, that’s my job. I’m supposed to be ready, and I was ready.”

(On thoughts as you head onto the field) “It’s a great opportunity. We keep kind of a goalkeeper pool within the Sounders. Keller was hurt a couple of days ago in the D.C. game and Boss was playing (today) and needed a backup. I got the call and I’m just thankful for the opportunity to actually get to play in a game like this.”

(From playing Washington Crossfire with Tacoma Tide to Celtic today) “It’s a little bit of a different atmosphere (laughs). It’s amazing. We had a game last night unfortunately we probably got knocked out of the playoffs last night but this is a great experience. I’ll remember it for the rest of my life, for sure.”

(How many people watched last night) “Probably 25 or 30. So to 50,000, big jump for sure.”

(Is that the game ball under your arm?) “Yes, they gave me the game ball.”

(Going in the game against a PK) “I saw the red card came out, and I was extremely nervous at that point. I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, this is really happening.’ And then you kind of get on the field I had the penalty scored on me, but then you get on the field and you make a couple of plays and it all kind of just goes away. I started feeling more comfortable than I ever thought I would be. You wouldn’t think you’d feel such a state of comfort like that, but I felt good. The butterflies went away as soon as I made my first save, and it was all right from there.”

(Did you watch Samaras in the World Cup) “Yes, I did. I was like, ‘Wow, the long-haired Greek guy is actually taking a penalty on me right now?’ Yeah, I do remember him from the World Cup, I definitely do. Unfortunately I guessed the wrong way.”

(On last night’s Tide-Crossfire game, tied 1-1) “We probably needed to win that game. So basically we need Kitsap to lose out and we need to win out and beat them in the last game to make the playoffs. It is what it is.”

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