Sounders Insider

Colorado coach: "A game of two halves"

Here's some of what Colorado coach Pablo Mastroeni had to say after the Rapids' 1-0 loss in Seattle:

On the game: “It was a game of two halves really. I think the first half, we were behind a little bit. We conceded a world-class goal – it was a great take. The mentality was a bit … almost too respectful of our opponents in the first half. We didn’t ever half the confidence to put the ball down on the carpet and play. In the second half, the mentality was much brighter, the thought to go forward was more aggressive. We found ourselves in some very good spots and had some very good looks at goal. I think the second half was a tremendous effort to try and get back in that game, but unfortunately we just ran out of time.” On the late change of Jared Watts for Axel Sjoberg:“The way I manage this team is everyone understands their roles and responsibilities for each position. Whether it’s a scratch right before the game or there is a sub at halftime, everyone understands what the roles and responsibilities are. That’s not an excuse. I think collectively in the first half we were just a bit naïve, a bit overwhelmed and really didn’t put our best foot forward.” On what changed at halftime:“We had to go out and get the game. The guys were much brighter with their passing, much more positive with their passing and there was actually some movement off the ball that created some good exchanges higher up the field. More importantly, it was the mindset. Guys took it upon themselves to take responsibility for every pass, every movement forward and really attack the game the right way. We leave this game disappointed with the result, but I’m quite pleased with the effort in the second half. We have a quick turnaround on Saturday against a tough team in Portland so we have to make sure we bring it at the start of the game.” On the factors of many new players and the artificial pitch playing a role:“Absolutely. Those are all variables and there were quite a few players out there who’d never experienced that so I’m sure it was a shock to them. But again, even when the bounces aren’t going your way, you have to be able to contribute to a game in a positive manner. If you can’t pass on the day, if you can’t dribble on the day, whatever it is that you’re meant to bring to the team, you have to contribute in some kind of way. I think in the second half, the guys overcame all these variables, all these obstacles, made no excuses and really attacked the game the right way. If not for a ball bouncing our way on a corner kick, set piece or one of those decent looks that we had outside of the box, it could’ve been a different game.” On some positives to take away from tonight’s match:“Like I said, I couldn’t be more pleased with the effort in the second half – I really couldn’t. But my expectations are high. We might be a small-market team, but we’re a big-market mentality. We want to do some things. We want to win every game. There are big teams, but I look at those guys in (the locker room) and I’m saying you guys are big players. At times, a lot of the media, a lot of the people out there, we don’t get the limelight. Irrespective of that, you have to believe you’re a big-time team, you have to believe you’re a big-time player. Again, I’m very pleased with the effort in the second half. I feel like on any given day we can beat any team in this league – I really do. I feel we’re organized, everyone understands their roles. I feel we have players that make a difference, we have the right mentality and have 30 players committed to the cause. So for me, that trumps any other variable. In the second half, we showed that we can compete with anyone in this league and we can win whether it’s home or away.”