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March 23, 2011 at 2:59 PM

Sounders FC quote sheet: Schmid, Jaqua, Friberg

Some more complete transcripts for you. Some from today, Jaqua’s was yesterday…

* * *

SIGI SCHMID, head coach

(On Houston Dynamo…) “They have made a lot of changes but there’s obviously a lot of guys that have been around the league. Brad Davis is still a key player for them and he has been around with them for a while. Geoff Cameron has been on the club now for a few years. Brian Ching up front is a pretty standard character. Jason Garey I know from my days in Columbus. I drafted him there so he is somebody we are well aware of. Dominic Oduro has been with them for a while now…

(Not anymore. Oduro was traded to Chicago for Calen Carr today…) “Eh, same thing. Well, what it is is a quick fast forward. They did that. They’re equal-type players so a little change of scenery for both of them. Bobby Boswell has been around for them. Is Eddie Robinson going to step back in the lineup because [Jermaine] Taylor is missing? He’s been around for a while as well. There’s a lot of guys that have been there for a while.”

(On Houston’s style of play…) “They are a team that works very hard. They are a team that has got good size. They got one of the best free kick takers in the league in Brad Davis. They really try to make use of their set pieces and their corners and with their size and with his accuracy of service they are very dangerous at that, so that sometimes is some part of their game. And they are going to be aggressive defensively.”

(On injured Sounders returning to action…) “We’ll see. Each day it’s a reevaluation of what happened the day before. Today a couple of guys did a little bit more than what they did the day before, so now we have got to see if there are any setbacks tomorrow. Certainly if we can bring those guys back into the fold, whether it’s starting or off the bench that’s going to improve the strength of our team.”

(Does it feel like the team is becoming more of what you were hoping for to start the season?) “Yeah, definitely. Then you got competition again for positions. Even today, when we trained a little bit, you got guys making their way back so you can put some guys in for a little bit of time. That means some guys are out for a little bit of time. That gets their juices going a little bit, because they go, ‘Well wait a second. There’s a chance I might not start now.’ That sort of wakes everybody up a little bit. Having your choice of players gives you options on how you want to match up. If you a play a team with size, does it make more sense to play this guy in midfield versus this guy because it’s a better match-up for you? You have those options.”

(For those guys yesterday that we re-joining training, there were no setbacks today?) “No. There were no setbacks. A couple of guys stayed the same. They didn’t necessarily advance either though. That’s why it’s still up in the air.”

(On Gregory Richardson…) “Just trying to look at him and see. He got recommended to us by a guy who I like the way he looks at players. He says he’s worthwhile for us to look at right now so we are.”

(Any thoughts on Ochocinco in Kansas City?) “No, no. We were talking about bring in (Mike) Williams from the Seahawks, give us a big presence. We felt we could target him up front a little bit.”

(On Will Bruin…) “Obviously he got drafted by Houston ahead of us. He’s a good player. He had a good career at Indiana. He’s big and strong. He’s aggressive. Is he going to start this game if Brian Ching’s back? Is it going to be Ching and Garey? Is it going to be Ching and Bruin? You don’t know. Ching will be in for sure. But he’s a player that the league signed Generation Adidas. People believe in his abilities. I think he can play in this league and he was a good pick up by Houston.”

(On the first week of the season…) “It was a tough beginning, especially with the games that we played and having to play and travel takes a little bit out of you. From a standpoint of fitness we think we are OK. We just need to see the ball go in the back of the net. We think if we can get one that will open it up for us a little bit, take the pressure off the pressure-cooker a little bit. I think we have been in both games that we have played. We’ve done well in those games in terms of our play but we haven’t scored. People sometimes point fingers and say, ‘OK, who should be scoring? Montero should be scoring. O’Brian White should be scoring. Fernandez is a DP.’ In L.A., the goals haven’t come from their DPs either. Both have come from Juninho hitting two bombs and none of their DPs have a point. Sometimes that good fortune goes your way and you end up with the results and sometimes it doesn’t. It’s important that we don’t panic. It’s important that we realize what we’re all about. No expansion team has done what we have done in the first two years. Again, taking away Chicago — and Chicago never won another one either by the way — no expansion team was close to winning an MLS title in year three. So I’m proud of that and we still feel we have a chance to contend and we just need to get some wins.”

(If a two-game lull happened in mid-July, no one would say a word…) “If you won five and then you lost two nobody would say anything either. Sometimes you can’t pick when they come. Certainly we’re not happy about it. We want to do better. We need to do better. We need to work a little harder. We need to create our own luck. You can throw all the slogans out there that you want to throw out but at the end of the day we’re not happy with the results. We want to get more.”

NATE JAQUA, forward

(Sounds like you’re closer to getting healthy?) “Yeah, I think at this point it’s just a matter of getting fit and making sure I don’t do too much, where I overdo it. I’m hoping to be available for Friday. I feel good. We’ve talked about it a little bit, just with the coaching staff, and it’ll depend on how I do this week, but I want to be available.”

(Was this a target date? Has everything gone to plan?) “I think my target date was the first game of the year, but I thought that was very optimistic. This was more realistic. I don’t think I’m behind. I think I would’ve been ahead had I been in that first game. I think I’m right where I’m supposed to be. It feels good. I still get some pain, and it’s something I have to manage, but once I get going I feel good and want to get out here.”

(It’s been a while, how eager are you at this point?) “I’m very eager. It’s also a matter of getting that sharpness back. You don’t want to come back too early and not be as effective as you could be. It’s one of those ones where I feel like I’m starting to get better touches and just a matter of playing now.”

(How many full sessions have you had?) “Probably a week and a half now, about the last 10 days. There’s always a little bit. I’ve talked to some guys who have had this and it’s one of those ones where you don’t come back and feel 100-percent right away. It’s one where you have to work through it a little bit. Talking to Noonan, he still has a little bit of pain from it. It’ll be a 100-percent hopefully in a month or two. It’s one where you deal with it for a little while.”

(How much did it mean to you to be protected in the expansion draft?) “It meant a lot. It’s good that they see me in their plans. Now it’s a matter of getting back out there and hopefully performing for the team and getting some wins.”

(On the team needing offense) “I think we played two very good teams and we had some good chances. It’s just a matter of putting those away. Obviously I’d like to be out there and hope I can help the team. We got a good group and we have the ability to score quite a few goals.”

(On being a target forward and facing a physical team like Houston…) “I know Houston very well and it’s one of those ones where it’s always kind of a fight. That’s where a lot of the games I play in are at. They want me up there. They want me taking the brunt of it, knocking things down. I think OB has done a very good job of that as well. It’s just a matter of knowing you’re going to get it from Houston, you deal with it, and once you get the ball down you start playing.”

(On last year) “I was coming back and it was one of those ones where I felt it. I knew the hip was wrong in the middle of the year, but I got some cortisone shots in it and some other shots in it as was able to get through the year. I just knew there was no way I could perform the way I wanted to for an entire year with this injury. I knew I had to get it taken care of.”

(On scoring five goals in 2010…) “I think I was OK. It’s a tough one when you come back and you’re playing, but you’re not 100-percent. That was really where I was struggling. I was able to get into some Open Cup games and during those games I felt pretty good. When I felt good I was happy with how I played. It was more the ones where you come in and the hip starts to go a little bit and I was having trouble getting through 90 minutes.”

(On being 90 minutes fit) “It kind of depends. I was hoping to get more work in this week and be farther along, but I’ve actually come down with a little bit of a cold. It kind of kept me from pushing the fitness side of things. It’s hard to tell, but you need to be a real game to get that fitness. We had an 11v11 scrimmage a week and a half ago and I was hoping to get in that, but it was right when I had a little bit of a setback and wasn’t able to get in that. Practice is great and running is great, but it’s really getting in an 11v11, a full game, before you get that fitness back.”

ERIK FRIBERG, midfielder

(You’ve come into a new team and played two 90-minute games, how have things gone for you so far?) “I think it was good. The first game I think was good, but the first goal was off a pass from me. It happens though and it was unlucky that they scored. The last game against New York was different being outside to the left. I think it was OK.”

(Were you comfortable sliding over the left after always playing centrally?) “I’ve done it a couple times in Sweden. Of course, I’m more comfortable in the middle because I always play there. It was OK.”

(And the team needed you over there…) “Exactly. I play where the coach asks me to play.”

(On not having goals yet…) “Of course there’s no panic. If we had scored the first goal in either game we probably would’ve won. It’s going to come. There’s no panic and there are so many games. It’ll probably come on Friday.”

(After the break you had, did preseason get you ready to play all 180 minutes?) “I don’t know. I had to get over some injuries. It was tough, but I don’t think about it. I want to play 90 minutes in every game this year.”

(On your first experiences at Qwest Field) “It was fantastic. It was unbelievable. It was amazing. I can’t wait to play at home again.”

(Surprised at all?) “Yeah, I’m not used to it. I hear the fans were fantastic, but it was really, really, really good. That’s one of the reason I wanted to go here too.


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