(How did this time against Conor Casey compare to the first time?) “First time I wasn’t used to obviously playing, getting used to banging around. This time I welcomed the challenge I guess you could say. As we were talking, he’s one of the better, stronger guys to play against.”
(What was the gameplan against Casey?) “The gameplan was just to keep him in front of us, keep a touch on him. Pat or I would just have at least a touch or be close enough to him the whole game. And this game, I just went into it, if he’s going to be physical, then I have to just either out-muscle him or get a piece of him as much as he’s getting a piece of me every time we go up for a ball. That’s how I went about it.”
(It was a physical game Sunday, will they all have to be played with that intensity from now on?) “For sure, because we’re not in a position to take any game lightly or go into thinking all we need is a point. We need a win every game. We need to climb the table as quick and as best as we can. When we take on a team that’s right above us, it’s a good win for us.
(On getting battered, was it as bad as it seemed?) “Yeah. Especially on the turf, because it’s a big difference than when you play on grass. It’s part of the game. When we get out there and play in games that mean a lot, it’s a lot more fun. You might be sore the next morning, but it’s well worth it when you get a win.”
(Easier to walk after a win?) “Yeah, that’s for sure.”
(Did a physical approach by you and Pat throw Casey off?) “I think what he’s not used to is guys being as physical or more physical with him. Getting a shot in before he gets his shot. That’s what he likes to do is get a piece of you before he gets the ball or the ball comes to him. It threw him off his game a little bit that we were giving an elbow back before he was getting a touch. With him dealing with that, and obviously me and Pat are more physical than a lot of the centerbacks in the league, it’s different for him.”
(Will Wednesday night be different than the bruiser Sunday?) “The South American and Central American teams are about more touches. You have to be more alert, because they’re going to be running off the ball and it’s a lot more difficult to get the ball from them because they’re smaller and cheekier and their center of gravity is a bit better, so they can take a knock and keep going. It’s going to be a quick game, but I like our chances. It’s a big game for us.
(Does going up against a Fredy Montero in practice help?) “Yeah a bit. Definitely, for sure. We got some South Americans and some boys on the team that give us a little taste of it. But when you got a whole team of guys like that it’s a bit different.”
(Did that collision between Pat and Casey symbolize the physical game?) “I guess it summed up the day maybe. That we were getting after it a bit. It’s unfortunate that he had to leave the game with a cut like that, because you never want to see anybody get hurt. But it’s a physical game and stuff like that happens. Pat went in strong and it’s a good thing he did because if he didn’t there might be a different result, there might be a tie and we’re walking off because he didn’t go through the ball. It’s good. It was a great play.”
(Will the quick turnaround by difficult?) “For us anytime you can play games it’s good, because I’d rather play in a game than practice everyday. That should be good. Going out there and trying to string together games and build your confidence and play and try to get a rhythm and keep the team rolling, hopefully the wins rolling, and the quicker the games, the better.”