NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION 1, METROSTARS 0
NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION HEAD COACH STEVE NICOL
On bringing substitute James Riley on:
"I guess it's one of those things. I didn't feel as though we were getting (Steve Ralston) enough of the ball in the second half. So, if we moved him to the left then he would get more of the ball, which made it straightforward that (James) Riley would come in."
On the Revolution's team performance:
"(James Riley) did two outstanding things: one off of the back of the line and one in the back of the net. But I think it would be wrong to take away from the entire team, particularly the first 45 minutes. We moved the ball as well as any team I have ever been with. Would we have liked to put the ball in the net as well? Yes. But as far as playing the game, that's how you play the game."
On the Revolution's defending compared with last Saturday's game:
"We said after the last game (against the MetroStars) that we thought it was just one of those days where we had too many guys defensively that just weren't at it. Fortunately it looks as if we proved that that was the case. We had that scare when Riley cleared it off the line, but I think had we not won tonight it would have been a complete injustice."
On clinching a berth in the playoffs:
"That's the first goal that we had at the start of the season: to get into the playoffs. We have achieved that now. The second goal is that we want to get home-field advantage. The only way we can be sure of that is by winning the rest of our games and that is what we will try to do."
On difference between the two halves:
"I think the fact that we played that in the first half, as far as moving the ball that well, was exceptional. It was always going to be hard to match that in the second half, but I think after we got over that sluggish period, we got a lot better and, again, deserved to win the game."
On Jeff Agoos' second-half tackle on Clint Dempsey in the MetroStars box:
"I thought it was a penalty. Recently we haven't been getting the penalties, for whatever reason. I thought it was a clear penalty myself. But, fortunately, we didn't need that."
NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION FORWARD TAYLOR TWELLMAN
On securing a playoff berth:
"It's big. You know, obviously tonight had the feel of a playoff game and we did a very good job of forcing them into some problems and creating some chances."
On seizing the initiative at the beginning of the match:
"I think even after the Columbus game we were laid back a little bit and we weren't really happy with our defensive pressure and obviously tonight was a huge improvement."
On the Revs' goal:
"Obviously Pat (Noonan) did a great job and had a great cutback and got it in the box. I just got onto the end of it and thank God Giggles (James Riley) was there."
On the Revs' remaining schedule:
"All three teams we're playing -- I mean San Jose is going to be a great game and Kansas City and Chicago are fighting."
NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION FORWARD PAT NOONAN
On not scoring until late in the game:
"There was obviously a little bit of frustration to play that well and not come in with a lead but times like that are going to happen and this team always fights through and finds a way to come through in the end. Tonight we had a big lift from James (Riley) coming in and getting that goal. We fought until the final whistle."
On clinching a playoff spot:
"We want to be number one -- not just in the conference but at the top of the league when the year ends. We're not giving up by any means. You can't be comfortable just by making the playoffs. We want to get that home field advantage and know that we were at the top when the season ends."
NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION MIDFIELDER JAMES RILEY
On his goal:
"It was very opportunistic, very lucky. (Pat Noonan) played a great ball and Taylor (Twellman) was able to get to it. I just tried to be in the right place at the right time. It definitely feels awesome."
On his goal line clearance:
"That might have been luck, too. It was a slow roller. I would have felt really bad if I let that one go in. Luckily it came right to my foot ... I just tried to work back. I was trying actually to defend the cross and my momentum kept going."
On his role on the team:
"From the get-go when I was a starter on the team (in preseason) in Bermuda and in Ecuador I always said all I wanted was to contribute to the team any way possible. Luckily in the first half of the season I was able to do that from a starting role. In middle of the season, coming back from injury, (I was) doing that from the sideline, whether it was cheering the guys on -- and now, in practice just getting the first team ready and letting Stevie (Nicol) and Paul (Mariner) know I'm ready to get on the first team again. That's all I wanted to do."
METROSTARS HEAD COACH BOB BRADLEY
On the game:
"In the first half I think we did a good job of fighting through it. I thought in stretches in the second half we picked it up a little bit, but to get to the end and give up a goal like that is a tough one."
"It's just a hard game. It's a different kind of game. They obviously responded from two games in a row where they hadn't won a game, and they picked up their pressure. Like I said, I think we survived the first half, which you need to do. I thought we had better stretches in the second half, but didn't make it add up for real chances on a goal."
On the play of goalkeeper Tony Meola:
"Tony (Meola) had a very good first half. We needed him to step up tonight and make some big saves and again it wasn't a good half for us. But sometimes you have to survive 45 minutes like that with the idea that they've taken their best shot and you are ready to get at them in the second half."
On the Revolution's defensive pressure:
"They put a lot into the game tonight. I think in the first half that certainly disrupted our passing. I don't think we did a good job moving the ball quickly and a little bit is a result of that pressure. I thought that we were able to do better with that in the second half, but you have to take that and make that count in the play that gets you the lead. And we weren't able to do that."
On the MetroStars attacking game:
"I don't think we were sharp enough in that part of the field."
On the MetroStars defensive game:
"I thought we were solid defensively. That's make it that much harder that we gave up a goal late like that. But it is just so typical of the goals they score. Ball to the back post and Twellman is there to get up and get a header back across and Riley is running in at the backside."
METROSTARS DEFENDER JEFF AGOOS
On his collision with Clint Dempsey in the area:
"He goes down quite a bit ... all over the field. He tries to draw that and I think the league needs to be more careful because that's not what the guys want to see. That's not how you go about getting a reputation for yourself."
On the MetroStars defense:
"I think we defended too much today. I don't think we got a hold of the ball as much as we would like. We played well defensively except for the one goal, so that is one of the positives that we can build on in the next week. But these games ... these are playoff games. You have to come out and get at least a point here. And really we would like to come out with the win."
On the offensive chances in the game:
"You know if you give him too much of the ball they are going to have at least one good opportunity, and they had a few. We had one or two, but not enough."
On the difference between this weekend's game and last weekend's game:
"I think they played very well at home. I think we didn't give the effort. Each person didn't give the effort that we needed to, especially in the first half. We didn't play together as a team. We played a little bit too much individualistic and we didn't get enough work on as an entire team. I think they second half was much better, but I think still we have to put together a better team effort."