Martino: We want the playoffs

Crew midfielder Kyle Martino was the 2002 MLS Rookie of the Year and has also played for the U.S. men's national team. Each week during the 2004 MLS season, Kyle will detail the week past, giving insight into the life of a professional soccer player.

I thought that we played well against Colorado Saturday and we created plenty of chances to score goals. The scoreless draw is definitely something you can credit to Joe Cannon. The saves that he came up with were huge, and they were chances that we definitely thought we were going to put away. It was a factor of him making great saves and a couple of chances that we really didn't finish off well.

It's just a little bit frustrating to come out of there, after playing so well, with a 0-0 draw. But a point on the road is still a positive and though it's something we're not completely satisfied with, we'll be happy with it.

As for the Burn game Wednesday, I think we're just going to continue doing the things that we did last game and the last three or four games that have been working well. We've been getting a lot of chances and playing some really good soccer. So I think we're just going to continue doing what was working for us to get all of the goal-scoring chances in Colorado. We're going to try to make sure we finish off one of those opportunities and put some pressure on Dallas, rather than having it be late and still a scoreless game.

The Dallas Burn game is one of the games we have in hand over the other Eastern Conference teams, and it's extremely important that we take advantage of it. We've realized the benefit of having these games in hand. We've felt positive and felt that we were in a good situation simply because we felt that those games that we have, we're going to get points that other teams don't have any opportunity to get.

If we don't utilize these games that we have coming up to level out the field and if don't get points, then it's going to be a tremendous waste. We're going to make sure that the two games we have in hand, we're at least coming out of both of those games with a point, if not getting three points from both games.

The team's plan is to make sure we go into the All-Star break with a win against Dallas and to use the break as an opportunity to relax and clear our heads. We'll get rejuvenated a little bit and rest the body, rest the mind and be ready for a serious second half of the season where we're coming all out. We want to make sure that we're one of the teams that has a check next to it saying we're in the playoffs before the season's over.

When we got back from Colorado, a buddy of mine, Eddie Hidalgo, got me and Chris Wingert backstage passes to see the Grateful Dead. So we went to go see the Grateful Dead about 2 1/2 hours from here in Indiana and went backstage and met some of the guys and gave them a Columbus Crew jersey and hung out a little bit. It was amazing.

This weekend I'm going to go to New York City. One of my good buddies is getting married and he's having a bachelor party, so that should be interesting. I'm also going to stay in the city with my girlfriend and see a Broadway show and just kind of hang out and relax.


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