Postgame video and quote sheet: Union 1-2 NYCFC

Photo and video: Daniel Studio

Mike and Eli’s postgame wrap

Jim Curtin’s postgame press conference

Interviews with  Richie Marquez, Sheanon Williams and Zach Pfeffer

Philadelphia Union postgame quotes

Jim Curtin

Opening statement

After a run of good performances, this was a good game but one where we’re disappointed to leave with no points. It’s an empty feeling right for the guys but I think we pushed the game well and had good moments. We got the goal to start the first half. I just looked at the stats and I think we had 31 crosses which shows the quality of the final ball was lacking a bit. Whether the timing of our runs was a little off or our service let us down. We were never able to take a real stranglehold of the game. I thought even at 1-1 we pushed the game a ton. Pfeffer came in and got a couple of chances, a couple looks, and gave us some great energy. Unfortunate that we weren’t able to preserve the lead and give up the second goal.

On his substitutions

I thought the guys that came in did a good job and that the guys on the field were doing a good job. At that stage of the game when it was 1-1 we had a ton of chances to get the second goal and retake the lead. I thought that the guys on the field were doing a very good job. When we went down we didn’t have another striker on the bench so we had to juggle some things. Again, had a lot of crosses, had a lot of opportunities but just couldn’t get the second goal today.

On Andrew Wenger’s performance

I thought last game he had a very good game and he had some moments where he was OK tonight. But sometimes on his runs he’s in there (the box) a little too early and sometimes he’s not so again trying to find the balance, get on the ball, and get in some good spots. We hoped to have him take on (Jeb) Brovsky a few more times one on one and get isolated. He’s frustrated, he wants to get a goal and get going but it’s taking him some time. But again, he’s still got a lot in him and he’s a guy who gives a lot of good effort defensively and contributes a lot offensively as well.

On NYCFC’s first goal

It was a turnover at midfield where he picked it up 45-50 yards from goal, started to run with it and at a certain point you need to step up. McNamara hits a great shot in the end but at the same time we talked about playing a team whose backs where against the wall in the same way that we were three weeks ago. You know we were going to get a lot of fight and a lot of effort and to New York’s credit they put a lot into the game. McNamara makes a great play and the second goal is a deflection off a throw in where they turn us in the box and it’s a little unfortunate deflection. I’m disappointed for our guys. There were a lot of great performances and Brian Carroll played one of the best games I’ve seen him play. I thought he was excellent for us. Vince was very good. A lot of guys had very good nights but it doesn’t add up to points so it all feels like a waste.

On how his team has a hole to dig themselves out of

The points per game column is the only thing that tells the true story at this stage of the year and we’re not doing well enough in that column. There’s teams with games in hand that we’re ahead of in the standings and the loss column is way too high right now. We have way too many losses, especially in our building where our fans where great tonight with a packed house. Seems like when we finally get some momentum going forward that we can’t keep it going, so that part was difficult. But the East is the East and a lots going to change from now through the next 18-20 games for some teams. So it’s going to be a fight to the end and we have dug a hole again that we’ll have to fight our way out of.

On the poor finishing

Yeah, I think it’s a little unlucky where balls are played behind guys and a couple were played into the goalkeeper. Could have been executed a little better, but it’s a combination. Some of it is our runs where we’re rising at the right time. Deciding between when to play a cross and when to keep dribbling and forcing the goalie to make a decision by taking a better angle. Finding that balance for when to shoot, keep dribbling, or pass. We were a little bit off on the night and I don’t think it was a fitness thing at all. We had legs, energy, and they actually had more guys on the field where 20 minutes was the most they had played in their career. So again, we were the team that had the fresher legs, pushed the tempo of things, and we were unfortunate to be on the end of a hard loss.

On his team’s tendency to cross

Yeah, they really gave us some wide spaces for sure. Fabinho was very good and got to the endline a bunch where he hit a lot of low hard balls and put some in the box that were dangerous. Again I thought it was a night where we weren’t getting on things. It’s not that often that you get that many crosses and that many looks to put the ball in a dangerous spot. Even the ones where we did have contact would deflect off of somebody who would make a last ditch slide tackle or the goalkeeper would make a good save. It’s a difficult one for us because the guys put a lot into it. It’s just a frustrating loss.

On having two weeks off

Yeah I’ll give them a couple of days off. We have a game on Tuesday against Reading, our affiliate, which will keep the guys going. We’ll get some guys in who haven’t had a lot of minutes. We’ll get fully healthy which will be good. Hopefully we’ll catch our breath a little bit. We’ll go to LA next and then we’ll have Seattle coming in which ought to be difficult games coming up. But our guys are up to the task and we’ll get a little bit of rest. It’s been a long week, one that we wanted to end the right way with a win but we didn’t take care of business.

Zach Pfeffer

You guys have been on a streak – to lose this way to a team that is at the bottom of MLS, is that tough?

Yeah, anytime you lose it’s tough. But I thought we put in a real good effort, good performance, a bit unlucky to not finish a couple chances that we had, but look it’s been a great five game stretch so far. That’s an extreme positive for us and we’re moving in the right direction – a little bump in the road here but we’re gonna get right back at it and are looking to LA.

With the time off coming ahead, is that hard?

I mean right now we’re in a good spot – we have a lot of momentum even though we didn’t get the result tonight. We still have some good momentum going for us – you definitely don’t want to have this much time off, but that being said, that’s what the schedule is so we have to use the time wisely, take care of our bodies – we have had three games this week, and have played the most games in the league so far, so it’s probably a much needed rest for everyone. We’re going to use that rest, we’re going to get back together, and look forward to getting some good results.

Sheanon Williams

Did you think you were dragged down on that play

Yeah, I was dragged down – maybe he didn’t see it, that’s fine, he didn’t see it, so he had my arm and I couldn’t make a play on the ball – it is what it is.

This is a game where you guys had many chances. Does that makthe loss even more frustrating?

Yeah, I thought we were not good in the final third. Last pass, last shot, we just weren’t good enough and we have to be better. Especially when we get so many chances like that.

How tough is this because you guys were playing your best soccer of the year. Is this loss a major setback?

No, I’m not going to say it’s a major setback. We’re going to get some rest now – have a week off – and start again. Five good games from us, that needs to become more and more games. We need to become more consistent and over the last five games you can see that we’re getting better and we’re improving, so we’re only looking to take steps forward and not take any back.

Are you glad to get a little break?

Yeah, anytime you have three games in eight days a break is welcomed. We got an open cup game we need to take care of, and then back to league play.

CJ Sapong

You know, as a forward you kind of deal with the ebbs and flows of the game – kind of like life. When it’s flowing, you got to make it last as long as possible because you know sometimes it won’t last forever, so that’s the mode I’m in right now – just enjoying myself every time I step onto the field and my teammates are putting balls in the right places for me to capitalize on.

Can you take us through your goal?

Yeah I mean kind of like the last two goals, it kind of just dropped at my feet in the right spot and left me with not too much to do really – just put it in the net – and I was fortunate enough to get it on goal and it went in.

How tough was this tonight because you guys had many chances and were controlling play a lot, and then they get that one goal and come out here with a win?

It’s tough, but it’s a game. I think it’s mostly that no one on this team has seen before, it’s unfortunate it would happen when things are going really well for us. But I saw a lot of positives for us out there, I am very proud of my team and how we’re working hard and how we’re working for each other, that’s something I haven’t really seen in the beginning of the season and now we’re doing it consecutively game in and game out so the season is still young and there’s a lot of positives to take out of that game.

How is your confidence with the way you’re playing right now? 3 goals in 4 games – you’ve really given the team a major spark.

Yeah, as a forward you always want to score goals, and I’m just confident right now. Luck has been on my side as well and my teammates have been putting the ball in the right position for me to capitalize. I will say though, for me, it’s about the impact I’m providing, and if I’m holding the possession up for my team and you know pressuring the right way, in that sense – I’ve been happy with my performance the last couple of games. Obviously, I’m always going to see parts where I could have done better, but I think if I can keep providing that impact, I can help put our team in a position to win.

Maurice Edu

You know you guys controlled so much of this game – does that make it that much more disappointing?

I don’t know. Overall, I thought we played a good game. Unfortunate to not go up a couple goals before they even get theirs; the guy hits a great shot for their first goal. And the second one I thought we could do a bit better on. But you know what, it’s been a good five game stretch for us, and we put together five good performances and probably could have won all five games.  So what’s important now is to just get ready for the next league game, which is against LA away, and I’m proud of these guys – proud of the performances we put in tonight and over the past five games, and we just got to continue to build off this.

Are you glad to get a two week MLS break?

I don’t know. I kind of wish we had more games because we’re enjoying our soccer right now. We’re playing well and I think it’s important that we try and continue this momentum – taking it to the cup games and just keep it going from now and hopefully we can continue that when we play against Galaxy.

A game like this won’t hurt the team’s confidence?

Yeah, like I said, there are a lot of positives to take from this game. We’ll be disappointed we didn’t win the game, and giving up a goal that late especially at home, but other than that, I thought we fought hard. You saw the commitment from all the guys for the full 90 minutes, and I think we’ve shown a lot of growth over the past few games. It’s important to keep moving forward and continue to build on what we’ve established and built so far. I’m proud of this team.

New York City FC postgame quotes

Jason Kreis

On this being the first victory in awhile

Obviously I’m really pleased with the guys efforts and the result. It’s like a breath of fresh air around here and I hope that these points will mean something to our confidence level because I feel like we’ve really had some guys that have struggled with confidence for a few weeks now so, those are the positives but we still have a long way to improve and I think that everyone on the locker room here knows it, so we’ll get back to work pretty quickly this week.

On how the team can continue to build off of this

We just, look at it for what it is, a really important three points. It’s great to get a win away, great to finally get some points that I feel like we’ve deserved for a long time, but we need to keep our feet on the ground and as I said before, we must recognize, we must look ourselves in the mirror and know that we still have a long way to go.

On the new players in the lineup

I think it’s always difficult for guys to step into the starting lineup when they haven’t been there for quite some time. Actually, both [Thomas McNamara and Kwadwo Poku haven’t started for us yet. I think it’s difficult, you could see that they looked a little bit leggy in the first half and both of them looked really fatigued at the end of the first half. We got them in here and got them a little bit of a break but I do think that they still, they like everybody else, there is lots of room for improvement.

Patrick Mullins

On the team’s first win in a while and what it means

I think it’s important , obviously, to pay off some of the performances we’ve had where we’ve deserved it. I thought we gave ourselves a really good chance to get something from the game, and sometimes it’s about plays in the first ten minutes of the half and the last ten minutes, and that’s what it came down to. I think we’re happiest for the fans, the loyalty, the passion, the drive they’ve showed for us has been great.

On how much the win helps his confidence and the team’s confidence

It’s huge Not only is it three points, its three points on the road and in this league it not easy to do. I think it’s a big morale boost and hopefully we can put together some nice performances and be able to get points.

Josh Saunders

On the game

I thought it was great. I thought the effort was amazing, we’ve been talking about it for a long time, created some good chances and we put them away. I can’t be prouder of the guys, it was awesome.

On the boost in confidence and how to build on it moving forward

I think we’ve been building it for a while and then going into the home game against Montreal, it’s going to be huge. So, I mean, a good effort in training this week and continue to work on things, and get some little plays better and maybe get some more.

On the tweaks to the lineup and how they played

I mean I thought they did great. Obviously Poku passed to Tommy to get the goal, so I mean two guys that came on and contributed, it was great.  And then another guy that came on late in Patrick Mullins, came on and scored so the contributions from the guys that came in as subs or as replacements did really well.

Thomas McNamara

On how the first win in a while feels

It feels good to finally get three points, we’ve been working extremely hard, we’ve been staying together, you know it’s finally good, it feels good for it to finally come good for us.

On his first start for NYCFC and his first goal in awhile

It’s been a while. No, you know, it’s just a bonus. We just wanted to get the three points, and whoever scored the goal scored the goal. It just so happened to be me today. Obviously you know, it’s just a little icing on the cake.

On the goal he scored

I just tried to get myself inside and I think it was Poku who ended up giving me the ball, I took a touch or two and just decided to go for it and I caught it well and it just ended up in the top corner.

On how they take the confidence moving forward

Yeah, it’s just one game and it was nice to just kind of break the streak that was going on, the winless streak, but you know, it doesn’t matter unless we follow it up with another good performance and a good result next week so, just got to be focused starting tomorrow. We’re going to Montreal, this game is over.


  1. ScottyMac says:

    Do Maidana and Nogs not give interviews? I’ve heard Nogueira speaks English pretty well, worst case Hoppenot could translate, not like he’s doing anything. Hearing from the two best players on the team would be nice.

  2. el pachyderm says:

    Boy this team’s inability to sit on a lead is infuriating… but I’m still in awe of that horse lengthening its stride on the backstretch gut busting its way to history.
    What a truly beautiful spectacle.
    I remember watching the Preakness on that wet muddy track and thinking, the horse isn’t even struggling. Clearly stronger than all the other challengers and my buddy raining on it afterwards….”Nah, he’ll ever hold up in NY with the fresh challengers.”
    Well….what now.
    Many of the people who post on this site have never witnessed what just happened on Saturday- 38 years is a long time.
    Oh right, and the Union- great time for a break iMO. Take two weeks off….then quit as the same golfing buddy says.

  3. Old Soccer Coach says:

    Secretariat. A mile and a half, the longest race in America. Thirty-seven lengths. Three Seven.

    In some ways, the best sight at PPL was over half an hour before tap watching Mike Lahoud running 110s on his own. The sight symbolizes that some of the planned squad depth may be returning from the injury list.

    Two weeks is also long enough to do some line-up adjustment and allow new combinations to practice together for a while. It is time to find out if Zach Pfeffer is an effective left channel midfielder, because he is a better finisher than Wenger. Andrew Wenger has been a good finisher approximately one half of one season in his MLS career. All the rest of the time he has had expectations up to which he has been trying to live, and has been poor.

    And give Blake the USOC game, if he’s physically ready by then.
    ‘Twould be interesting to see a Mike Servedio-style match report – especially the starters and substitutions – for the Reading match tomorrow night. It would tell us something about the evaluation of the bench. However, Mike deserves his time off as well!

    • Eli Pearlman-Storch says:

      No time off for Mike! He’s diving head first into the WWC.

    • Andy Muenz says:

      Agreed on given Blake the Open Cup, especially since Sylvestre isn’t eligible.

      • Dr. Union says:

        I was pretty sure Blake is still out for the USOC with his knee surgery. I’m pretty sure Curtin already said McCarthy is taking USOC duty. However were he healthy I would agree.

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