Postgame quotes: Revolution 0-4- Union

Photo: Courtesy of Philadelphia Union

Philadelphia Union postgame quotes

Note: Philadelphia Union quotes transcribed by PSP, all other quotes provided. Questions have been paraphrased.

Jim Curtin

On tonight’s result

Incredibly proud of our group. I think it’s too good of a group to have some of the results and bounces maybe not go our way in the past week. I think we picked a great time to have our most professional performance for 90 minutes. I think we’ve put together, even over the last five games, some really, really good stretches of games, but it wasn’t a complete 90 minutes so, very happy.

I think you saw with the addition of Alejandro [Bedoya] a guy that can slow the game down when it needs to slow down, and can speed it up when it needs to speed up, so it gave us a little bit of a calming presence in possession. I think the guys fed off of that. I thought we were tough to break down all night and, again, everyone was committed for 90 minutes. We said it before the game, we’d need all 18 guys, and you look at the subs that came in and each one impacted the game in a major way. So, we’re a team: We win as a team, and we lose as a team, and this group sticks together. And while we did have a little bit of a dip in collecting points in the past few games, it’s good to have a complete performance on the road. And now homestretch for everybody: Every point matters and this is a very good team.

On how Alejandro Bedoya fits with the team and how he is looking to see that develop

Good question. Right away, when he came into the team in his first training session, I think you could tell the [Tranquillo] Barnetta’s of the world know to give him the ball. He knows that if he gives it to Tranquillo, they can combine. Ilsinho, same thing. They get excited when they see a guy who sees the game like they do, because, again, they’re special players. They’re top players for a reason, and they have a way of, again, recognizing and blending into a team, and knowing who should be on the ball. And we preach to our guys, get the best players on the field on the ball as much as possible. Some nights it works. Tonight, we executed that and did it. You want a Bedoya making the decisions, you want a Barnetta making the decisions, because they can influence the game the most. That’s not to discredit the rest of the guys, but you have to know your role in the team, and Alejandro is a special player, and we’re excited to have him on board for a long time.

On what the first goal did for the team in terms of confidence going forward

We’ve struggled with our starts to game, so we’ve been, you know, the past five or six games, poor at the beginning and really come on in the second half. But, sometimes, it’s too late, you know? So, good to come out and throw the first punch, so to speak, and CJ [Sapong] for his confidence, get a goal early. It just is contagious with the group. Everyone feels now that we can get a result here in a hostile environment; big crowd tonight. Again, there’s no better feeling, there’s no tougher task, than winning on the road in any professional sport, to be honest. So, credit to the group. But the early goal certainly helps in terms of raising the confidence of the team.

On trying to prevent the Revolution offense from getting into a good flow

So, they have a lot of individuals that can beat you one vs. one. A Kei [Kamara], a Lee Nguyen, can break you down with a pass. [Diego] Fagundez, when he gets going and gets confident. Kelyn Rowe can shoot from distance and get a goal. Teal [Bunbury] has been in good form.

So, we knew they had a bunch of really strong individuals. The key was to not let them have any combinations and interchange and try and make Kei go one against two, and maybe try and frustrate him, in that regard. So, the idea was to be compact, defend inside to out, and not let any of their…not let two guys go in at once, you know? Because when Fagundez plays into Kei, and now you’re scrambling and they have good interchange, it’s difficult to defend them. I think we did a good job of frustrating them a little bit early, and that led to our success on the night. But being compact, and defending inside and out was a key tonight. We did it good.

On conversations he had before the game with Charlie Davies, and the plan when subbing him in

When I think back, I almost feel embarrassed saying that it’s going to be emotional for him, because he’s been through a heck of a lot more than coming in to play a soccer game, you know? This is nothing. So, I kind of almost, when I said it, “Don’t let the emotions get the better of you,” he’s been through more things than I could ever imagine. He’s the only one that knows exactly what that is like, so I won’t speak for him, but in terms of…First and foremost: a great person. Met his wife and kids last night: unbelievable people. Comes with a smile on his face, will work hard. I don’t have to tell you guys this, you already know, you’re New England media. But, no, he brings a burst of life into our locker room, too. He has some relationships in there, some friends there. We had a good locker room, and now I think it’s ever stronger. You can see he’s a pain in the butt to play against, too. He gets under the center back’s skin, draws fouls, holds balls for us, gets an assist at the end, worked really hard.

There was a decision, maybe, for me to throw him in at half time when we had the injury to CJ [Sapong]. I just thought fitness wise, not familiariarity with the group, it might have been asking a lot. So, we went with [Fabian] Herbers. He understood that and was happy to play a big role tonight.

Again, emotional for him, probably, in some ways. It’s pretty special, though, when a crowd like that chants an opposing player’s name. So, that tells you what you need to know about Charlie Davies, because that doesn’t happen a lot. Again, credit to New England for recognizing a former, good player. Happened quick, you know? That’s a quick, timing wise, it’s quick for him to be to be back here. It’s in the past now, and I’m sure he’s happy we got all three points.

Alejandro Bedoya

Thoughts on first MLS start and game with the Union 

Well, I mean, I thought it went well. There’s not many things to complain about when you win 4-0. But for me, It was nice to be out there. This is, obviously, my third week, preseason, really, so I’m still trying to get match fit. But, I felt good out there, you know? I was doing the role that the coaches want me to play, which is kind of like a No. 8, but this game it seemed to go away a bit more in front of the back four and help combine with Warren [Creavalle] and link up play between the back and the forwards. And, I think I can see already with me and Barnetta, and the front three, that we can combine with each other, and play off of each other. So, I’m excited to be a part of this team, and I think the future bodes well for us at this club. For me, it was nice to get through, I don’t know, 65 or so minutes, and keep working on match fitness. Probably take a couple of weeks before I can play 90.

On developing chemistry with the rest of the team

Yeah, definitely. I think you saw times when we were able to play in between the lines and keep it on the ground, that we we would combine well. But, like you said, it’ll take, you know, some time to create that chemistry. But, I could already see from training this week the team has the players to play some good soccer, some attractive soccer, and do some damage to other teams.

On the good result given the team’s recent struggles 

Yeah, I mean, that’s what we talked about, it’s very important for us to get a win on the road. Last week we were close to it [in Washington] but we just have to be a little more composed in the final minutes. With this game we talked at halftime that we have to kill the game off early before they get back into the game, and that’s what we did. We got the result we wanted and hopefully this is part of, maybe, a run into the playoffs. Getting into the playoffs is very important, and hopefully this is the start of something good.

Charlie Davies

On his thoughts and emotions as this game came closer

I felt that it was great timing. Just because everything happened so fast, I felt like today was a great day to say goodbye, and thank you, to all the supporters that have been so loyal and passionate for the past three years. These were three great years that I had here and I felt that they deserved a proper goodbye.

On what was going through his mind leading up to kickoff

Excitement [laughs]. Of course, I’m anxious to get going. Jim [Curtin] is, obviously, doing a fantastic job of building me up, building my fitness up, my match fitness, not rushing me out there. He’s doing a great job of pushing me and, at the same time, keeping my expectations low. I feel like he is putting me in the perfect scenario to succeed.

On what he was trying to do once he came in the game

Mostly, we had the lead and, as a substitute, obviously, Jim was telling me, you know, “Defense first; I know you want to score, but go in there and  bring some energy to the game,” which I was able to do; and keep the ball and make sure you can pick up loose balls and be an option for our team. So, yeah, in that respect, it was a great game for me.

On how his fitness is coming along

It’s coming along. I feel great. One thing about this team is the practices. It’s very…there’s a lot of high tempo in the training, and the intensity is extremely high, and that is the environment I want to be in. I feel like I’m getting pushed and, you know, it’s great being around guys, and coaches, that see your potential, and value what you can bring to the team.

On how different his situation as a player and personally is now versus two weeks ago

It’s completely different situation. Here, you’re brought in, [and] they made a point of everyone knowing — not just you — but everyone knowing that they value you; you’re brought to the team because they respect what you can do for the team, they need what you can do for the team, and they want you on the team. So, being wanted is something — or feeling wanted — is something new for me. So, obviously, I was extremely excited to get going here and perform for Jim and this team. Obviously, three of my closest friends are on this team, so it makes it easier for me to transition in, but, yeah, it’s coming in here, building my fitness, knowing that, in the end, this will be the perfect place for me to succeed.

Did you feel undervalued with the Revolution?

You know, I guess it’s up to you guys to decide that question. I mean, when I played, I gave it my all. I felt that I did extremely well in my time here, and I felt that maybe I didn’t always play when I thought I should have, but I feel like every player thinks that. Either way, I love the guys in that locker room, I love the fans for supporting me, and now it’s on to new horizons and, obviously, I’m going to make the best of my time here.

On what it meant for his name to be chanted by the Fort and the rest of the crowd

I think that about sums it up, really, of my time here. I think they showed appreciation for my dedication to the club on, and off, the field and it was emotional at the end for me because, obviously, this place is special to me: It’s home, it’ll forever be my home. But, things, for me, happened to go a different route, and now I’m excited to be a part of Philadelphia and looking to go into the playoffs and use my experience to get this team to an MLS Cup Final.

On today being three years ago to the day you were doing your first training with New England

Yeah, it’s pretty crazy. But, again, I feel like I’m ready to take the next step in my career. And here — it’s obvious, you know — they see me taking that next step. They believe in me, and that’s important,; it’s not only when the team believes in you, but when the coaching staff and the front office believe in you. Then, I think, that says it all.

New England Revolution postgame quotes

Jay Heaps

On how the opening goal affected the game plan

Well, it certainly wasn’t the way you want to start a match at home, or any time. To be honest, I don’t think that was the goal. It was coming back out of halftime and getting another one early in the half. That goal was the one that was maddening, so to speak, because I thought we at least were better toward the end of the first half and were starting to be at least a little bit better. There’s no excuses. Across the board, we were second best tonight and credit Philly. They were better than us tonight, for sure.

On the defense’s struggles as of late

A little bit of everything when you look at it across the line. You can’t point a finger at one thing. Service has cost us again tonight. We don’t get pressure to the ball. We touch tight. I thought [C.J.] Sapong did a nice job to get a goal. We could break down every goal and there’s something at fault in each of them. Sometimes, it’s [positioning]. That’s what we work on, to make sure we’re not [out of position]. Sometimes, it’s overall commitment to make the defensive play and sometimes it’s a team breaking you down. You can live with the breaking down. You can live with a team making a play on you, but I feel that most of the goals that we’ve given up have been things that we could’ve avoided. Now, I don’t know what the number is exactly, but yeah, I think it’s a fault of ours this year. It’s our Achilles’ heel and we have to find a way to get out of it or it’s going to keep happening like this.

On whether there is a problem with players not making plays or if there needs to be a change in the back line

I think it’s all the above. I’m not going to sit here and say ‘It’s not my selection of the players that are in there.’ That’s part of it, if here or there we got to put a different player in there to make the plays. It’s on the players that are in the game to make the plays. It’s all the above. It’s not one thing that you can say, but there’s no excuses. It’s on us as a staff. It’s on the players. We have to really face this one because this was not good on any level.

On the thought process of playing without Gershon Koffie

The thought process was, I thought the back four looked pretty good the other night against Chicago. We gave up a goal, but it was more of a mistake riddled goal. Kind of what we talked about on that one with three or four chances to clear it. I think tonight, the idea was, I liked Kelyn [Rowe] centrally so I wanted to keep him centrally and I liked the way the top three attacked the other night. So really, it was Lee [Nguyen] for Gershon [Koffie]. So it was a little bit more in the mindset of being attack minded. Unfortunately, we never really got the offense we need to get going, to make it difficult for Philadelphia. We missed Gersh. There’s no question about it. He wins a lot of balls for us. He cleans up a lot of mistakes that we make. Tonight, there was nothing being cleaned up. Any mistake we made tonight, was pretty glaring and cost us a big three points.

On where the Revolution go from here

The way I look at it is, there’s only one way to go and that is to roll up the sleeves and get to work again. Obviously, people are upset and this is as bad as it gets in terms of losses. However, we still are in this fight. We got 10 games left and there’s no one saying ‘This thing’s out of our control.’ We feel like when we get going, we’re dangerous. If we don’t get going, which is what we were tonight, we’re going to be watching some teams pass us. The reality is, we got to take our licks. I feel like this has been a tough, inconsistent season for us. Every time we feel like we make a couple of strides to step forward, we’ll have one step back and that’s on all of us looking in the mirror. I put myself square in front of that to say ‘How can I make these guys not step back?’ We feel like we do a lot to get them forward and then the step back is what’s devastating because that’s where you lose your momentum. We just haven’t been able to generate a run of games where the momentum gets going. That’s where we’ve been able to do that in the past. This year, we’ve just not been able to get our momentum going to where we can get ourselves clear, higher into the playoff hunt.

On how the up and down experiences as a player can help coaching this team going forward

There’s no magic wand. There’s not one magic command when you go into the locker room when we meet on Monday to say, ‘Hey. This is what’s going to fix it.’ It’s going to be a lot of hard conversations and changes that we’re going to have to make and lineups. We’ve had tough times. We’ve had some injuries. So, it’s not like we’ve had one lineup the entire year and stayed with it. I foresee us making some changes now as we get guys back, but also because certain guys need to maybe watch, and see it from a different angle, see it from an area where they can interpret their game and how they can affect the game when they play. Again, there’s no excuses. We were outplayed tonight all over the field. We had a good game on Tuesday. Was it a quick turnaround? Not to the point where it should have been 4-0. There were definitely tired legs, but we need to battle through that. We have a deep enough team where we should’ve been able to at least be level and then make subs that could impact the game. We never got to that point because we gave up the goal early and then we gave up the goal to start the second half.

Lee Nguyen

On tonight’s performance

It’s one of those things where you’ve got to play until you hear the whistle. You can’t stop. We made that mistake in Toronto and again here and it hurt us. Any time you go down like that it’s tough. It’s a tough blow. We played good the first half. After that, I thought we played well, I thought we created chances, but the second half we lost the patience to try to keep it. I think we were a little bit trying to go too direct and they just got some soft goals.

On if they’re losing faith in their ability to stop teams

I don’t think it’s the confidence. You can’t do that at this level, and if you do against teams like this, they’re going to punish you.

On if they’re not clicking on the attack

I think we’re just not clicking all around. It’s one of those things where it starts from the back, goes to the midfield, goes to the forward, and you’ve got to find that through the entire play. We can’t just expect to create something out of nothing all the time. We’re good enough to do that every now and then, but against teams like this, if we can’t get into the flow it’s going to be a long night.

On if he and Kei Kamara are having trouble connecting on the field

It’s one of those things it’s going to take time. He just came into the team not too long ago so we’re still trying to get used to each other’s’ tendencies and how we like to play off one another. We’re still trying to figure that out, but at the same time, we’re going to have to figure it out soon.

On the difference in how they played against the Union in the Open Cup and tonight’s game

You left an early one like that and it’s tough from there. We were playing catch up instead of playing to win. At that point, we just didn’t play in the second half like we did in the first half. I thought we responded well after the goal but in the second half we just weren’t patient enough and we let them some soft goals and it was tough to turn around after that.

Bobby Shuttleworth

On the tough stretch of league games

I think it’s just not a good enough performance from every single player that is on the field tonight. To loose four-nil at home is unacceptable. I think every single player needs to take a step back and look and realize that we’ve got another home game on Saturday, and it’s an absolute must win for us and we have to put on a better performance.

On if there’s one glaring thing breaking down consistently

I think it’s everywhere. I think there’s a lot of things, as a group, that we’re just collectively not doing consistently enough. I think we’re doing it in spurts in certain games and it then it goes away and obviously we are going to get punished during those times that we don’t do those things correctly.

On if he sees mistakes or if the other teams are just better

I think if you look at our roster we have one of the most talented rosters in the league. I think it’s not one thing, it’s not one player, it’s collectively as a unit every single player, it’s just not good enough. It’s not consistent enough. Like I said, it’s in spurts. We’ll play really well and then we’ll shut off for a couple of minutes and we’ll get punished and teams are doing a really good job of punishing us when we stop doing the things that we do well consistently.

On how to come together and move forward

I think that, like I said, every single player needs to look at themselves – and myself especially – and think what can we do better? How can I help the team perform better? We’ve got to look at the video and we’ve got to come ready to train and put the work in and every single player needs to work hard this week and prepare and be ready to play Columbus.

One Comment

  1. The Little Fish says:

    I really like our current roster. I think the FO did a masterful job. I truly have no complaints. Fabinho is playing great at LB. Tribbet and Marquez control the airspace around Super Dre. Charlie Davies sures up the front line with CJ and Herbie. And the midfield is absolutely stacked. You’ve really got to tip your cap to Big Earn and Chris Albright, and even Papa Jay. They’ve no doubt all done their part. I wouldn’t want to meet the Union in the playoffs.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *