Sounders Insider

USA coach praises his team, Portland crowd

USSF100Here's some of what coach Jurgen Klinsmann had to say after the U.S. national team opened CONCACAF Gold Cup with a 6-1 win over Belize before a crowd of 18,724 at Jeld-Wen Field in Portland.

On the crowd: Thank you to the fantastic crowd here in Portland. It was a wonderful experience. The players were all curious how it would be, and it lived up to the expectations.

On the result: We took it seriously. … The team was very focused and wanted to get the goals, and they did. And therefore, we are very satisfied.

On Chris Wondolowski, who scored three goals: He is so dedicated, and he has such a great attitude. … He’s always hungry, never let’s a chance slip away. … He always gives it everything he has, and it’s just a joy to work with him. ... A goal-scorer always comes out in the moments when his work will pay off. That’s what a goal-scorer is about: always hungry, never let an opportunity slip away.

On dominaing play before the goals started coming: When you play a team with 10 players behind the ball, it takes time to open up space there. At the beginning (Belize was) fresh, they are energetic to play in this tournament, and so they close every little space they see. So it takes patience. It always takes patience. … Once you get a little bit of a rhythm and you score the first goal, then things will open up a little bit, and eventually you will break them down.