Dominic Kinnear's Weekly Conversation
Brett is a defender and Orlando is a midfielder -- but they have been playing well. Developing into the senior roster is more about time. We need to get them more experience playing on Sundays with the reserves and seeing how they do. Both have been great and we have been very happy with both of them."
Clayton, from Mountain View: Are you considering moving Brad Davis into the middle to be a link between the left and right sides of the field or are you happy with his success at wide out?
DK: "I like his success out wide, but I would not be afraid to put him in the middle as I have done in previous games because he is very good on the ball, but he really serves a great ball from the wing."
The Earthquakes finished out last Saturday's game with Dwayne De Rosario playing as a midfielder. What does De Rosario bring to the team from that position and is there a chance he could play there this Saturday against the Wizards?
DK: "That is something we are looking at, we will obviously make that kind of decision closer to the game. That is the way we finished up the game in Chicago and we were moving the ball pretty well, so we just wanted to see how it went with him there today in practice. With Dwayne, first of all, he is dying to play. He wants to get in there wherever he can. Playing in the middle, he is on the ball more and obviously we are pushing more forward in attack. It just adds another attacking option from a different place on the field."
Despite two points in the first three games, the Quakes have had good opportunities to earn more. Can you look at the first three results optimistically?
DK: "You can look at it optimistically from the standpoint that we are creating chances at home and on the road. Our forwards are playing very well and they are getting good service, especially on set pieces. We have been dangerous on that. If you say that you are optimistic about the results, well that's not right because we want better results. I do say that the way we have been playing and going forward has been very positive."
Do you feel there is added importance on Saturday's game against Kansas City to get the first win of the season?
DK: "The pressure we feel is because we want to win. We are here because we want to play, compete and win. That is the pressure we feel, and of course we want to get that first win because then all of a sudden you look and we could jump two places in the standings with a win. Just for confidence it is important. Sometimes guys put pressure on themselves when things aren't going well, and sometimes they don't need to. Everyone here feels that this team is very capable of doing great things this year. I think we were expecting more from ourselves, and that is the pressure we place on our shoulders. Our expectations for ourselves are higher than what we have been showing."
The Quakes have had difficulty closing out games this season. What do you feel you need to do to improve on this?
DK: "Obviously, we need to possess the ball better. We need to defend and attack everything in our box. We can't let balls bounce, we just have to be the first to everything and just have a very aggressive attitude. You have to have the attitude that you are not going to get beat individually and as a team."
It appears that some of the goals the Quakes have allowed this season have been the result of communication problems. Is that the case, and how can the team change this?
DK: "Yes, I think it has been a problem, and we have to address it. You have to address it and move on. We look at it and say, 'this is what has happened, this is where the breakdowns are,' and then we let those people know that yes, these breakdowns have been happening, let's fix it, and move on. If you want to keep hammering away at it, I don't think that is a good response -- to be negative all the time. We stop, look at what happened, see that it shouldn't happen again and then say, 'let's move on.'"
The Wizards are a tough team that return most of the lineup that eliminated the Quakes from the MLS Cup Playoffs in 2004. What do you feel the Quakes have to do to beat Kansas City?
DK: "We have to move the ball fast, because they are organized and they do counterattack, so we need to keep our shape in the back. They have the reputation that they are a counterattacking team, but I don't agree with that. I think they are very organized and their people know their roles very well. I think that Ronald [Cerritos] and Brian [Ching] need to keep playing well because they are playing very well together. We need to create chances and limit them all over the field. They have a lot of dangerous players, like Chris Klein. Klein likes to attack and he is a very strong runner. He is a player that we will talk about and watch video on and be ready for. He is good, but you can't just look at stopping him. [Davy] Arnaud and [Josh] Wolff play well together, [Jack] Jewsbury pops up with some goals once in a while and [Kerry] Zavagnin and [Diego] Guitierrez hold the ball well and are strong defensively. It is a tough match for us, but we have to be ready for that. Every week is hard in this league."