Postgame quotes: Crew 2-1 Union

Philadelphia Union postgame quotes

Jim Curtin

On Zach Pfeffer

It was good for him. I thought he brought a lot of energy. He ran hard through the box and was on the end of the first goal by a homegrown player for us. On match result: Not a great first half. It’s never good to give up a break away from midfield weather it’s close to off sides or not. They give the benefit to the attacker on that one. It wasn’t a good start to the match for the fact we were chasing it. We lost two guys to injury that made it difficult. We lost one to a concussion and one that was sick that needed to come off. It was difficult in that regard that isn’t a way we want to use our subs. To our credit we fought hard and got back into the game making it 1-1 we just couldn’t close it out.

On the second Crew goal

The second goal was blatantly offside. Referees make mistakes again. That one kills you though in the 92nd minute where he was clearly off sides and there was no call. It was clear as day. Our mentality hasn’t been good on closing out games and I give Crew credit on closing it.

On positives from this match

There is not a lot in this game to be honest. In terms of half the season since I’ve been in charge I think the guys worked hard and the record speaks for itself. We have improved a great deal. We’ve came up short down the stretch in big games. I think our mentality needs to improve in order for us to take the next step.

Zach Pfeffer

On scoring his first career MLS goal

It was awesome. Obviously it was my first professional goal and my first MLS goal, so I’m very grateful for that. It was just another opportunity that I had, I just tried to come on the field and make an impact and help the team in any way possible, so I am happy I was able to do that.

On the team’s overall performance

I thought we did well, we stuck together as a group, we made it difficult on Columbus. We had some more chances in the second half. We were unlucky with the two goals, [the second] could have been offside. Overall, I think everyone is happy, especially with the second half of the season. We all stuck together, and we really turned the season around and did well.

On his loan stint with Hoffenheim in 2013

It definitely helped me a lot; I had a great year over there. It was a really good experience. It is just a different experience overall. Being in Europe, it is a very high level and it made me grow up and mature and improve as a player in every facet of my game. I’m very happy I went there, I think it helped me a lot and obviously I’m thankful to get the goal here today.

Brian Carroll

On the team’s overall performance

I thought both teams did well in spurts. For us, maybe, not as well as we could have for long enough periods of time.

On positives to take away despite the loss

There are some positives out of the match. We were able to claw back in and get the goal to tie it up, but we were not able to finish it off so that is something that we have to work on as a group, finishing things off and understanding the situation and trying to get a result however we need to. Some other positive things, Zach [Pfeffer] gets the first goal of his career, we don’t make it easy on the Crew, we make them have to earn it. They found a way to get another goal to win the game, unfortunately we didn’t want to let them do that, but that happened.

On coming back to play in Columbus

It’s a nice city; it’s a nice soccer town. I still enjoy coming back here and seeing the atmosphere. It brings back memories of 2008-10. There will always be a place in my heart. But, I enjoy being with this group in Philly. I think we have a good group and obviously there’s never the exact team from year-to-year, but there are some good pieces here and a good core group that we can build upon and get better for next year.

Columbus Crew postgame quotes

Gregg Berhalter

On the team’s effort

We had a goal and it was to win the game. I’m proud of the guys for grinding it out. It certainly wasn’t our best performance but on a day when you chose to rest Federico Higuain and make couple of other changes, I think that it was great that we got the victory. 52 points in the season isn’t bad.

On what didn’t work

Give Ethan Finlay some credit, The Philadelphia Union play us tough. All three games we didn’t execute our game to 100 percent and that has a lot to do with them (the Philadelphia Union). I think we hit the posts early, we scored early and we certainly did enough to win the game. So that’s what matters in this situation, it’s never easy in the last game when you’re already in the playoffs but I think we did a good job.

On the substitutions

Yes, Bernardo Anor has been doing a fantastic job and it’s fitting that he scored the goal but we also want to get him game time. So we wanted to reduce the load of one player and get Bernardo Anor minutes because he needs to maintain his rhythm. Aaron Schoenfeld has had a high work load as well and he has been doing well lately but we’re focused on the playoffs and we’re ready to get him 100% rested to focus on the playoffs.

On Jairo Arrieta’s play

That was another idea, let’s get Jairo Arrieta up to speed just like Aaron Schoenfeld is, let’s get him firing on all cylinders and certainly the goal is going to give him confidence. He made a big impact last time in the game against the Philadelphia Union and he had another big impact today. On the importance of the win for the team: It was important, no question, especially the way we did it. Not playing our best game but still able to grind it and in the end still able to get the victory. We have to credit the Philadelphia Union for coming here and giving us a tough game, they didn’t lie down at all. Their season was over and they came into the game to get something out of it. So I think it’s a good test for us and certainly there are some things that we are able to work on for the post-season.

On the Philadelphia Union’s play

They press us in an interesting way and if we can move the ball quickly we can really hurt them. On the days you don’t move the ball quickly you turn over the ball in bad spots and that’s what was happening at times today. Offensively, the Philadelphia Union have very quick transitions; they don’t hesitate, they win the ball and go forward right away. The Philadelphia Union gets a lot of crosses in the box and a lot of runners in the box so it’s a difficult team to play against. We would have made life much easier scoring the two nothing but it didn’t happen so they fought back and they did a good job of that.

On the team’s reaction to the pressure from the Philadelphia Union

I’m not disappointed, it’s a learning experience for this group. It’s difficult when teams are coming at you with that many numbers trying to make you turn the ball over you have to be clean and you have to be precise, and when you’re not you get punished. I think I would have been disappointed if we would have just stopped trying and started just kicking the ball. We’re going to keep trying, the guys need to move more, open up more, take more chances, and support each other when they have the ball. I’m not disappointed I think it was a good learning experience.

Wil Trapp

On his mentality

Right now for me I’m not getting nostalgic. It’s about playing well tomorrow, it’s about recovering tomorrow, It’s one step at a time. I’m not satisfied. I’m not content. I want more. I think that’s the way it is. I think sometime in the offseason I might look back and be happy with what we have achieved but right now we’re not done and that’s the way I feel. On playing Philadelphia: They do a good job. They press well. They make it difficult. Also, we weren’t very sharp today and when a team does well and we aren’t sharp it’s difficult. On reaching the MLS Cup Playoffs: It’s just another game for me. Right now I’m just looking forward to getting out on the pitch tomorrow for a little rejuvenation and Tuesday getting ready to play. I want to keep my form high, I have a lot of saves left for this team and I’m nowhere near content. I want more.

Steve Clark

On the team’s overall position

We [Columbus Crew] are happy with the three points. We know the stand of that game [Columbus Crew, Philadelphia Union] was not good by any means. We hold ourselves to a pretty high standard, and when it is slack like that we are not happy. It is a little bit of a subdued reaction at the moment. We are hoping New York [New York, Sporting Kansas City game later on tonight], helps us out.

On what changed after the first Columbus goal

It changed a little bit. I felt the whole game was a little haggard, a little slow, not enough moment, and not enough cleanness on the passes. It was not the best performance from us, and something we have to remedy because coming into the playoffs, you cannot have slack performances like that.

On what it is like to be back in the MLS Cup Playoffs

It is really exciting. It has been our goal during the regular season to make the playoffs. I think the fans deserve it. The coaching staff deserve it putting in the long hours and a lot of work to get us where we are now. And we [players] deserve it. It been up and down at time, but our body of work throughout the whole season has been enough to get us where we are now. When you get to the playoffs, it’s anybody’s game.

On getting a home playoff game

I think that’s fantastic. The past two-and-a-half months we have been excellent at home. We are going to ride that wave.

On making his first individual playoff appearance

I’m pumped. Do or die. Back against the wall. Every game is that much important. That is why you play the game.

On the team’s youth impact entering a playoff run

I think we have guys like Hector [Jimenez] and Michael [Parkhurst] who have been there [to the MLS Cup Playoffs], and that will help the guys such as myself who have not made the playoffs. There is good and bad with that [playoff inexperience]. People are going to say that we have a lot of inexperience, but at the same time, we are just going to go about it like we have the entire season.

One Comment

  1. That Gregg Berhalter sounds like a pretty good coach…

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