Sounders Insider

Sounders slowed Rapids by slowing match

colorado_150Here's some reaction from the Colorado Rapids after their 3-1 home loss to the Sounders tonight:

Coach Pablo MastroeniOn the game…I think the first half was really bright. We attacked the game in the right way. I think we just got stung on the counter, it was a good finish. I’m really pleased with how we attacked. The guys got forward and created great opportunities. To not be able to finish those was really the story of the day.

Coming out of the second half, I think Seattle did a really good job of creating moments to slow the game down. A lot of times going down and stopping the game, any time you stop the game, you stop momentum. I think from a full perspective they did a good job with that. I think from our side we were a bit loose with our passing, the second half didn’t get the flow, and towards the middle part we started picking up the game and creating some good opportunities and some good crosses. We were really loose with our shooting. Having said that, the effort was tremendous and the mentality was great. There are a lot of positives from the game, but it’s disappointing with the opportunities we had, we didn’t make more of our chances.

How would you have wanted to respond to the pace of them slowing the game down?We need to execute basic simple passes more efficiently. When they slow it down, you begin to slow down. Your thought process slows down. Instead of zipping the ball quickly, moving it to the next man and changing the angle to pass forward, you sit on it and wait and dribble it sideways. It’s a part of the energy of the game. They did a good job. We didn’t do a good enough job moving the ball in the early part of the second half. To dictate the flow like we did in the first half.

Not too much of a step back considering the level you were able to play at for a large portion of the game.This is a process. I don’t look at it week to week like you guys do. I look at the overall. The first game we couldn’t create anything. Now, we are creating tons and not defending well. We’re not as good as we were last week and not as bad as we were this week. It’s a process. You’ve got to find ways to win games. I’m excited about how we defended for the greater parts of the game. I’m excited about how we attacked for the greater part of the game.

Now we have to get results. We’ve got to find ways to overcome little moments of the game where they’re dictating and find ways to get results. For me it’s a disappointing result. There are a lot of positives, but there are a lot more things that we need to work on and get better at. Six games in, we’re moving in the right direction. We’ve got a lot of hard work this week and have a great game to come back to next Friday.

Midfielder, Dillon PowersIt was an exciting half, why so aggressive?I think we found the space that we wanted to. I found the space right behind the midfielders. Juan, Gaby and Vicente were making really good runs.

For the second half, was it tougher because they had more guys behind the ball?They were a little more disciplined in their defense. It’s harder to find those gaps. They did a much better job keeping the ball, making us play a lot more defense.

Goalkeeper Clint IrwinOn the game…It was (Lamar) Neagle who got the initial shot. It hit me, and it was one of the ones where the guys were coming back and just got mixed up. We’re just a little bit unlucky. I think we’re pretty disappointed on how that goal went down. The third goal was one where we got caught in transition. Martins took the ball down, and had the whole goal to pick out. It was a moment where he comes up with some good soccer and really breaks us down. Overall, I thought we attacked really well, especially in the first half. It was just disappointing we hit the post. It’s just one of those games where you can’t get that little bit of luck to get you started.

On that rebound was there a little bit of miscommunication along that back line? There wasn’t any time to miscommunicate. It was one where it bounces off of me, James is recovering and it bounces off of him. It lands right at Neagle’s feet after he’s already run past me. It’s kind of silly to give up, but it’s just the way it happened.

Defender Drew MoorThoughts on the game…I don’t think that Seattle is a 1-3 team better than us, but they were better than us tonight. They finished their chances. I think we were too loose in the back. They live in the transition, and they took advantage of their opportunities.

Is it an adaption after last week…This is a good lesson to learn from. We’ve got a lot of experienced guys in the locker room that aren’t very happy with the way the night went. Obviously Seattle is a good team with some very good players, but I think we gave them too much joy and freedom. They want a transition, they want to pick balls up and go at you. When we were able to win the ball higher up the field in their defensive third, we were much more dangerous. I just think the back four had difficulty recognizing when to get tight and when not to get tight. It’s something that needs to be fixed, but obviously I have a lot of confidence in these guys and myself to fix little things like that. This is a team that we’re going to play two more times; that’s not going to happen again when we play them.

It was very open in the first half, was that good for you defensively?If we’re winning, yes definitely. Defensively it’s difficult when the games that open, especially with some of the players that they have. Obviously, you give up a fourth minute goal after hitting the post thirty seconds before that then the game is definitely going to open up. We responded well but gave up another quick strike to them. That’s what happens when the game is open. It’s the defenders responsibility to make sure we close down in our defensive third. I just don’t think we were good enough. We were too stretched out, the team wasn’t compact enough. We gave them too much freedom, which is what they were looking for.

Do you take solace that Seattle’s first goal and third goals were excellent strikes?We’ve got to be better. It doesn’t matter what kind of goal you give away, they have to earn the goal. The first strike’s a really good goal, but we’ve got to be tighter to Neagle on that one. He’s proven over the course of the last couple of seasons that he can score from distance. Obviously (Obafemi) Martins is a tricky little player. Any time you get scored on you have to fix it, watch the video, realize what happened and talk about it. I think we played a good game. I’m still feeling very optimistic although I might not appear that way. This is a good learning lesson. I think we played better, when I watch the video, then what I’m feeling right now.

This is a bump in the road but you are not put off course. It’s the sixth game of the season. We can’t drop points. We can’t lose games at home. This has got to be a fortress. We dropped too many points at home last year. We haven’t won a game yet at home. We have to be better. I think if everybody was 10% better tonight, it would be a different story.

On returning from injuries…I felt so much better tonight to be honest. My body was pretty broken down after the first game last week. We had an extra day of rest, but I didn’t feel the need to rest tonight which is great. I felt a couple of other little things, but I think that is just from the soreness of going 90 minutes for the first time in nearly eight months last weekend. The body feels fantastic.

How much do you have to change your game plan playing behind as opposed to last week when you were playing ahead?It’s tough because you have to do that during the game. You never plan on playing from behind. A lot of times you’re more urgent when you are playing from behind, you create more chances, and are more demanding of each other. We responded well after their first goal and the second part of the first half when they scored their second goal.

Midfielder Vicente SánchezOn the loss...It was a tough game, a game in which we attacked them. I believe their first goal came off a counter-attack after we hit the post. Right after we tied things up, they took scored again. Those were some of the key moments in the match. The team always kept pushing in search of the win.

On the mentality of the team after being down late…It’s a different game when the team goes up a goal at the beginning. We went down 1-0 but were able to tie things up prior to their second goal right after things were even the score. In the second half, we came out aggressive and their third goal came while we kept trying to find our second goal. We will keep working throughout the week so that we can come up next Friday here at home and get the win.