Here are some reactions provided from the Sounders after their 1-0 win over D.C. United.
COACH SIGI SCHMID On the game I thought we came out and we fought and we battled in the first half we had some chances, and I thought we had a little more of the game in terms of possession, and I thought in the second half D.C. picked up the tempo a little bit, you know - they had some chances as well, but we ended up getting a late goal. And we’ve been giving up some late goals, so it was nice to do the reverse this time.
On who was key to the win I thought the middle of our midfield, I though Nate Sturgis played well. I thought Michael Seamon played well. Alonso came on and did a good job on the new player D.C. brought in - Boskovic, so that helped us control the tempo of the game and Fredy Montero I thought was very, very effective tonight.
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On the play of goalkeeper Kasey Keller Kasey made some great saves, and he’s playing on a bum ankle. He can’t kick the ball or punt the ball at the end, and that’s why we held off so long on the last sub because we didn’t know if we had to sub Kasey maybe, but then he felt he could get through it, and that’s when be brought on Nyassi.
On D.C. United I think D.C. has had a little bit of hard luck because they’ve taken a lot of late goals as well. As they integrate their two new players - when they get Hernandez up to speed, you know because training with the team and playing in games is different. We had Nkufo here today but he needs to get used to it, I want him to see the game up close and so forth. But as those two [D.C. United] players come along, I think they could be a dangerous team. Najar is playing very well for them on the wing - he’s a dangerous player, and Pontius I think is a dangerous player as well.
FORWARD ROGER LEVESQUE On how the goal sequence developed Just doing what we did all night long: putting pressure on them, getting ourselves in good positions. I’m not entirely sure how the build-up went. I know Fredy [Montero] got the ball out wide, held the ball up, and made a great move, and whipped the ball across. It just got over their defender and all I was trying to do was put it on frame. I’m not even sure what minute it was, 85, 86th - something like that - and just hold on and get out of there with a win.
On the Sounders’ success at RFK I think just getting off to a good start. Last year, the Open Cup final gave us a good feeling - the momentum we carried through after that obviously into the next week, and recently we’ve been playing well, or playing better at least. [We’ve been] trying to get ourselves in line going throughout the season and using this game as a momentum builder, hopefully we do that. I don’t know if it’s a specific stadium, or if it’s just a matter of us taking advantage of the moment and it’s unfortunate for D.C. that it’s in this stadium.On the win I thought we battled. I thought we fought today. Everyone fought for each other, and everyone was doing everything they needed to do: to defend, to attack, to keep the ball. Just doing the right things on the field - I think we showed a lot of heart, and getting that goal late was a full team effort. Kasey [Keller] making some big saves off the line, guys clearing the ball off the line, it was just a complete team effort tonight.
GOALKEEPER KASEY KELLER On his injury and the win Someone said to me it kind of looked like my studs caught the [turf] right as we were coming in together. Either way, it didn’t make we feel too nice, but you know the three points is everything - we’re just so happy. We needed something to go our way. We’ve played well enough to win games, and we’ve given up late goals for draws, and it just felt good to keep that clean, and to win 1-0, and for Roger [Levesque] to pop up at the end. I tell you, it was hot as hell out there, man, and we’re not used to that in the old Northwest.
On playing in the heat It’s been a little bit warmer at home lately. We’ve still probably only trained a handful of times at over 70 degrees. But the Philly game [a couple of weeks ago] was a good learning curve for us. They were a little tired too, don’t get me wrong, it’s impossible not to be. Our attitude has been changing in the last three or four games, and I think we’re definitely moving in the right direction. If you can play a game with this kind of humidity, against a team that likes to keep the ball, likes to pass it, and come away with three points, it’s nice. It’s nice to be able to do that.
And some DC reaction:
COACH CURT ONALFOOn the outcome of the game: “It’s a game where I don’t think we were particularly good in the first half. I thought we were much better in the second half. Having said that, we didn’t finish our chances. We had a couple of good opportunities and at the end of the game we pushed the game because we needed, in our mind, we wanted to get three points out of this game. We gave away a terrible ball to give away in our part of the field and we got punished.”
On Andy Najar: “If you look at Andy’s performance at 17 years old he’s making runs in the 90th minute to create chances and the majority of our chances came from his side, so he was dangerous. We still need more composure in the final third. We have to do a better job of that first pass, that second pass and that third pass.”
On the first half: “I wasn’t that pleased with how we defended during the first half, honestly. I thought that we gave them too much room. I thought they had some shots from distance. I thought we were just a little bit off. We knew that they were going to drop off a little bit, put a little pressure and we didn’t do a good job at moving the ball quick enough and opening up and having better movement of the ball. It’s not an easy thing to do on a hot night but it had to be better. Second half was a ton better there but Montero’s a very good player. We know that.”
FORWARD SANTINO QUARANTAOn losing late against the run of play: “Yeah, I think it’s one of those things where you look at the game and it was a story of two halves. We struggled in the first half, but in the second half I never felt like we were going to lose the game. I didn’t think we deserved to lose it to be honest. In the end, it was one break down, one mistake that [caused the loss]. We have to lift our heads up and move on. We have a couple of days here to get back at it on Sunday.”
FORMER SOUNDER STEPHEN KINGOn losing such a close match: “Obviously we are disappointed. We know now the way things have gone, that we need three points, so especially for us this is very tough. You know in the first half, I thought we were lucky to come inside at 0-0, but in the second half we played a lot better. We knocked the ball around. We created a lot of chances, but soccer is a cruel game. We are disappointed not to get points out of tonight’s game, but we have to get back to work tomorrow.”GOALKEEPER TROY PERKINSOn the loss: “It’s tough, just a tough loss to deal with. I thought at times we looked sharp. We needed to put away our chances. At other times we were disorganized and we paid the price. It was definitely not a good way for us to end the match.”