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April 26, 2014 at 4:44 PM

Clint Dempsey: ‘We kind of never took our foot off the gas.’

Here is a transcript of what Sounders FC star Clint Dempsey had to say after his two-goal performance in Saturday’s 4-1 home win against the Colorado Rapids:

*     *     *

(On the play between him and Martins…) “It’s not just me and Oba. It’s good work from everybody — quick play, quick transition at the point of attack from the midfield, getting the ball wide, Pappa and Neagle also contributing, Ozzie and Pineda with the passing and getting us the ball in good spots. We’re able to make things happen with link-up play through each other, as well. I would have to say it’s a team effort.”

(On if this is his best individual run…) “I mean the year I scored 23 with Fulham; I was on a pretty good run there. Yeah, it feels good. We’re in a good rhythm as a team. We have a good locker room and I think that shows on the field with our play.”

(On the tiki tika…) “I think it’s our team confidence and getting in a good rhythm of play and building off of that. Yeah, you can see that the link-up play is pretty good throughout the whole team. We’re creating opportunities for each other. It’s not just me and Oba. Other players are making a difference and getting in good shots, and we’re able to finish off those chances.”

(On the team having fun…) “Yeah, that’s what it’s about. That’s when you enjoy your ball the most, when everybody is contributing and everybody feels valued. We didn’t get frustrated even though the first half didn’t go how we wanted. We kept plugging away and we’re able to get that goal going into half that gives you a little bit of a lift. Coming out in the second half, if we can keep that pressure on them and get some more chances, we’ll be able to take the game to them and be able to put in dominant performances at home.”

(On the second goal…) “That’s what you need to put more pressure on them, and they have a little bit more of a mountain to climb in terms of coming back in that game. We kind of never took our foot off the gas. We would’ve liked to keep a clean sheet, but at the same time, there was some good play there, some things we’re excited about on how we’re progressing as a team. I look forward to the next game.”

(On setting a precedent regarding home performances…) “You always want to do well at home. You want it to be a fortress. You want it to be a place where people know it’s going to be difficult to get points here. I think getting in a good rhythm has allowed us to come here today and put in a good performance. Now it’s about the confidence of playing well at home and continuing that moving forward.”

(On using the word ‘fortress’ like Evans did recently…) “You can use different words to describe that home-field advantage and making sure it’s difficult for other teams to come here. We just happened to use the same word at the same time. It’s not like we’re having a team-building exercise, where we’re like write ‘fortress’ on the board and let’s talk about it. (laughs) … Nah, it’s a good mentality to have in terms of making sure that it’s difficult for people to come here and play, because we have to use the atmosphere and turf to our advantage, and I think we did that today.”

(On rewarding the home fans…) “Yeah, it’s a step in the right direction. It’s not just one game and everybody is going to be happy. We know that throughout the season, those performances will add up and we’ll reward the fans for the atmosphere that they create here. It’s not like any other atmosphere because it’s 45,000 fans every game. It’s an awesome experience for players to be able to play in that environment. It shows how far the game is coming in the States.”

(On the fluidity of the attack, making the extra pass and extra run…) “I think that comes from confidence, knowing if you do make those runs that you’re going to get the ball. Maybe in the past, you’re not wanting to make that run because you felt like if you do, maybe they’re not going to see you and it might be best just to conserve your energy. I think also just the unselfish play where, ‘You know what? If I make that run, it’s going to create space for people,’ and also be in the back of defender’s mind in terms of, ‘What are we going to do?’ Are we going to play the ball behind them? Are we going to drop and do link-up play? Try to keep them guessing, and I think having that mix of play allows you to pick teams apart. If you’re going to be successful, you have to have multiple dimensions to your game.”

(On the difference from last year…) “Last season, I felt I was getting in good positions and putting people in positions to get forward in the attack. I would say I can compliment my teammates, because they’re getting in good positions in front of goal. I’m getting better looks in front of goal, because when I first came, I felt like there weren’t too many games where I could look back and say, ‘You know what? I had a lot of chances I should have scored.’ I feel like in games now. I’m getting good looks and looks that are allowing me to put the ball in the back of the net. I have to compliment my team. I think we’re playing better right now than where we were toward the end of last season.”

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