(On Mike Fucito being back in full training) “He’s trained this week. We wanted to see how he got through training this week. So he is training without any limitations this week. We are going day by day and each day when he comes in he says he feels fine. He still feels a little bit where he doesn’t feel entirely fit or maybe as strong as was but he’s definitely pretty close if not there.”
(On Chivas USA scouting report) “Obviously we’ve done our homework already on them. As I’ve said before, they’re a team that you can’t really look at their last five or six games because they’ve made so many changes to their roster and to their lineup. They’ve got a few guys who are playing internationals tonight in Maldonado and I think one other guy playing for them tonight as well. But certainly with the addition on Maldonado and Nagamura coming to the team, and Espinoza coming in to the team, it’s changed the complexion of their team a bit. So we have to be prepared for that group, but I said to our team today, they’re a team that’s getting close to for sure a must-win situation. So for them it’s getting close to playoff games.”
(On what you’ve seen of Rooney as a MLS prospect at 19) “Every player has good moments and bad moments when they’re training, and young players more so. What you look for, just like with a guy like Miguel Montano, you look for those flashes of brilliance. And if there’s enough there, what you’re trying to do is stick with them and give them a chance to make it a consistent part of their game. He’s also a young player and someone who’s shown some good things at practice as well, but also shown that he’s young a couple times.”
(On what Nathan Sturgis brings) “I think the big thing with Nate right now is he’s very confident. He’s very confident, he’s gotten minutes, he’s been injury free and those are all important things for Nate. I mean, Nate started for me with the under-20 team in 2005 as an under-age player. He could play for the next under-20s, the ones in 2007. So I’ve always felt he was a good player, but he’s technically very sound. He’s very good with the ball, he’s got quick feet, and what he’s got on the field right now that really helps us is he’s an important part for us being able to connect passes. He’s been that link, a player who can get the ball from one side to the other. A player who sometimes with a good touch gets you out of trouble but also a player who is very two-footed and has that eye for a little bit of that longer pass at the right moment. But his ability to connect and complete passes is an important part for us at midfield.
(On seeing now what Sturgis could grow into since that U-20 team) “Well he played a different position on that under-20 team. He was still playing as a central defender on that team and actually did quite well. But at this level, the next level, it gets a little faster and so forth. The middle of midfield is a better place for him and he knows that. I think Frank Yallop played him there a little bit his first year with the Galaxy and had some good moments there. Then he got injured and things didn’t work out and he got traded to Salt Lake, and he never got off the ground there. Technically he’s definitely ready to play at this level and he’s a smart-enough player as well to play at this level, it’s just been a matter of confidence and everything else for him.”
(On the level of patience with him considering his injury past) “Well always. Always you got to work, but he started doing good work with his injuries already when he was in Salt Lake. When he came to us, he continued that. I think Dave Tenney obviously helped that, and our training staff as well, Randy and Chris supplemented it. He’s been very conscientious and very disciplined about maintaining his work to make sure that he doesn’t have problems and I think that’s been the biggest thing. I think he recognizes his body now and knows what he can and can’t do, and he knows what he’s got to do to maintain and he does it because he knows he wants to play.”
(On Miguel Montano’s lack of playing time since starting against Metapan at home, was he injured for Metapan away?) “No, he wasn’t injured. I read that somewhere and he wasn’t injured. With him, it’s just as I said, it’s young players’ inconsistency and he’s been a little bit inconsistent at times. Sometimes you got to wait for that next opportunity. When you’re not in the starting lineups sometimes what ends up happening is, it’s sort of, OK you’re first in line and you get that opportunity and if you don’t fully use it sometimes you drop to the back of the line and you have to wait until the other guys get through with their turns, and then your turn comes up again. I think he’s in that process right now. I mean Sanna Nyassi didn’t play a whole lot of minutes for us and last year sort of faded at the end of the year, but he’s one who is really coming on right now. The decisions he’s making, like the goal he set up today on the cross in practice, you see him now finding people and you see him looking for people in the box and not just hitting blind crosses. That was the thing we talked an awful lot about. It’s taking a little bit longer but right now, he’s doing very well and fitness-wise we wanted him to work on certain things and he has done that part of it, but it has taken him a year to get there and his brother was the same when he was in New England, I don’t think he got on the field for a year. So Miguel got on the field pretty early for us. I think he has tremendous talent and ability. Patience is a virtue that maybe he needs to acquire a little more of.”
(On a full week of training, benefit? Or lose your edge?) “Sometimes you do lose your edge a little bit because you are so used to going from game to game to game. We wanted to make sure today’s training was good work and I thought it was good work and it should’ve tired the guys out. It was good to be able to work on some things because we were able to hit some things that we wanted to work on. Hopefully we won’t lose that edge at all.”