WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 10, 2005 - D.C. UNITED 3, METROSTARS 0
D.C. UNITED HEAD COACH PETER NOWAK
On the game:
"It's always difficult to play in these kind of weather conditions for so many games, but I think right now, we're playing pretty smart soccer. We had our chances - we finished them. We played good soccer and this is the most important thing for me - to see the whole picture. The way we played was pretty good and tonight's game was very difficult, very competitive, as usual. We made a couple of mistakes and got lucky. At the end we had a 3-0 lead, but it was a very competitive game and a credit to New York. It was difficult for us, but in the end it was pretty good."
On thinking about giving up two goals late to Chicago on Saturday:
"As I said, the most important thing is we're not going to make the same mistake twice. I think if we keep possession and keep our shape and we play good soccer, we'll find another chance to score. This was the most important thing for us, to keep the lead to make sure that nothing would happen like it did in Chicago."
On the play of Jamil Walker:
"Jamil did a very good job. He's working very hard to be one of the strikers - the rotation is pretty good right now. As I said to all of them, you never know when your time will come and you have to be ready. We decided to go with Jamil and he did a great job today and set up the two goals, so this is what we're looking for from everybody - being competitive, being hungry for success and when the time will come for you, be on the same page as the other guys."
On United's newly signed Facundo Erpen:
"We always look to keep the roster competitive. We're not going to hand the job to Facundo - he has to earn it and he has to earn the respect of the guys. Bobby [Boswell] did a very good job today and in the last couple of months. Brandon [Prideaux] is playing very solid and [Bryan] Namoff just came back. We have John Wilson, who's done very well the last couple of months, and there's still a lot of games. We're going to play in the Sudamericana Cup and it's going to be very, very difficult. MLS games are OK, but we want to be also in the international space showing them D.C. United can play soccer."
D.C. UNITED DEFENDER BOBBY BOSWELL
On the night's result:
"We work so hard to get the results that we need and I thought in the end it would pay off and it's starting to balance itself out now, for the work we put in."
On his play:
"Actually, I didn't think I played real well tonight on the ball. I had a couple passes that didn't complete and I've got a long way to go. I need to work on a lot of things as an individual, but as a team we're coming around now and that's an important thing."
On whether or not the challenge presented by new player Facundo Erpen is a good thing:
"Of course. Anything that makes the team better is going to make me better as an individual, as well. I'm looking forward to seeing him on the practice field and hopefully we'll all bring each other up."
On his willingness to play in a new formation or position:
"That's for the coaches to decide, I think. I just show up every day with the intention to get better and work hard. I try to play my best and make it on the field every game and I let them worry about whether or not that's me."
On his goal:
"It was a free kick and I lost my man and just headed it in. I scored a number of goals in college. I played a little different position, but if you get forward on corners you make hard runs you know it pays off. I wouldn't say I expected to score a ton of goals my first year, but at the same time, if you have guys that can put the ball where they want it and if you know where to be, you just have to finish them when they get there."
D.C. UNITED MIDFIELDER BEN OLSEN
On the game and the play of Jamil Walker:
"We did a good job. Look at Jamil tonight, he did a great job coming in late and giving us a spark and creating the goals and just being a handful. That's what we need, especially with the ejection of Jaime [Moreno]. Jamil was great. He worked hard. He's been working, he's been struggling a bit this year and not getting the minutes he wants, but this is how you get the minutes - you show the coaches that you belong."
On the game:
"It was kind of a frustrating game, because the pace was very slow. It was hot and muggy and I think people got tired and when you're tired you're late - you're late in your tackles, you're late in things like that and it gets a little chippy. But, that's D.C.-Metros stuff."
On whether it was the team's best performance of the season:
"I wouldn't say that. I didn't think we were overly great today - it was a win. They were tired, they did a lot of work when they went down a man and towards the end you could see they kind of died. We can do better. We can certainly do a better job of finishing people when we're up a man or we're playing well and getting a lot of chances, we can put that nail in the coffin. We're happy. We're happy with the win."
D.C. UNITED FORWARD JAMIL WALKER
On his hopes to start on Saturday vs. Chivas USA:
"I'm hoping to, yeah. With Jaime [Moreno] being out [suspension] and Freddy [Adu] being hurt - I'm always ready to play Chivas."
On making a difference in the game:
"I try to do that every game and some things went my way and tonight I was able to get out there with less men on the field and I was able to use my speed to get in behind. I was able to get those assists and put Josh [Gros] through on one and he was able to score."
On his assist of Dema Kovalenko's goal:
"It was a good play. Santino [Quaranta] played it [the ball] to me and I made a run in behind and the coaches have been working with me on that - on not being offside. I'm pretty fast and usually I take a step too early and I'm a foot or two offside. They told me before the game 'just hold your run and be three or four yards behind' and I did and I was yelling for the ball. Santino played a great ball in and Dema obviously made a long run to get in there and everything worked out."
D.C. UNITED MIDFIELDER JOSH GROS
On if his goal went the way he planned it:
"I don't know. The far post was open but he [goalkeeper Tony Meola] was leaning that way and I hit the ball and luckily it went right to the near post - I'll take it. A goal's a goal."
On being on the opposite side of the 2-0 score:
"It's pretty frustrating when that's the case and that's when soccer is not fun, but I'm glad I was on the winning side tonight."
On when he realized they had the game in hand:
"I think once we got the second goal that pretty much broke their spirit. Everybody was just working the ball around and, as you saw on the third goal, it was wide open."
On the coach Nowak's direction before his goal:
"I could hear him talking when I got the ball and he said "take it to goal," and I just do what the coach says."
METROSTARS HEAD COACH BOB BRADLEY
On Guevara's ejection:
"You hope that, at the end of the half like that, the referee says 'one more time and you'll be off the field - you already have a yellow.' He chose not to do that. When you lose your captain in a situation like that, it is hard."
On the missed chances:
"We made a good push when we were still down a man. We created a couple of chances. I felt like we were pushing things and there is a goal there for us. The second goal killed us."
On entering the home stretch of the season:
"There are a lot of games in the conference left. Almost every one, every game, you've got to push for three points. Tonight, we didn't get it. I think that there are games within the conference that you've got to fight for the three points. That's what it is going to take."
On Guevara's first yellow card:
"I think that he felt he was fouled and the ref didn't call anything. [Amado] lost it a little bit. For me, it is important at that point that the referee talks to him a little bit and doesn't throw him a quick yellow. It didn't help matters that [United] scored on the set piece."
METROSTARS DEFENDER CHRIS LEITCH
On Amado Guevara's red card:
"It's a tough night, losing your captain, Amado. The first one was, I think dissent. A pretty soft dissent call, I thought. The second one, I guess, was on a pretty hard tackle. It's unfortunate to lose our captain, you know. Obviously, a lot of our stuff goes through him."
On the team response after the ejection:
"Decently well. There wasn't a huge drop off, which is good. Obviously, we had to switch some things around. Like I said, if you lose a talented player like Amado, you're going to feel it, but I think we handled ourselves decently well."
On missing an opportunity to beat United while missing Jaime Moreno [red card] and Freddy Adu and Alecko Eskandarian [injuries]:
"I don't know about them missing guys, because they have other guys that are equally dangerous, but these are the six-point games against D.C. We have two more games with United and a couple of other home-and-home series with other Eastern Conference teams so, by no means are we out of it, but we need to turn some of these games around."
On their upcoming home games:
"Sure, we need to be in a playoff mentality now. If the season finished now, we'd be out of the playoffs. We're looking to win every game with that playoff mentality and we'll need three points in each of those home games."
METROSTARS MIDFIELDER MICHAEL BRADLEY
On the Guevara ejection's affect on the game:
"Every thing we do goes through Amado. When he gets an early yellow and the ref gets frustrated with him pretty eary - we knew it was going to be a hard game. Every time we play D.C. there is a lot of fouls and emotion. It sort of disrupted our game and we ended up paying for it."
On the teams post-game emotion:
"I think that, when it was 1-0 at the end of the first half, the result was pretty good. We had three good chances when it was 1-0. It seems like it is just not bouncing our way right now. If we score one of those, it is a different game."
On whether the team feels the playoffs slipping away:
"No. We're still confident in ourselves. If we get a win against another conference opponent, we're right back in it. We're down about this game, but we'll bounce back."
METROSTARS GOALKEEPER TONY MEOLA
On the team being tired:
"There's nothing for us to be tired about. Tired is not tracking a guy for the first goal. Tired is not an excuse. Every one is tired at this point of the season. [Do you] think (United) weren't tired going into the game?"
On Guevara's red card:
"It changed the game. We need to play the game with 11 guys. That is the bottom line. That's why 11 start the game, especially here in a place where they had the ball the whole time. We can't put ourselves in a place like that."
On the MetroStars response:
"We did what we could do. By the time we got to 10 on 10, we did everything we could do, but it is not enough."
On the upcoming Columbus game:
"We better come out flying or we can kiss the season goodbye, for sure."