Photo: Via Facebook, Courtesy of Philadelphia Union
Note: All Union quotes transcribed by PSP from audio provided by the Union except for those of Richie Marquez, for which audio was not available and came in the team-provided quote sheet. Orlando City quotes were provided by Orlando and not transcribed by PSP.
Philadelphia Union postgame quotes
On the game
We talked to the guys before the game started about having a professional approach to the game, a professional performance. We talked about everyone just having a good game — no one has to feel the need to be great — just if everyone has a good game, that’s usually when we get points. And I thought everyone did. I thought everyone put a good shift and limited them to one shot on goal in an incredibly tough atmosphere. With 38 — or how many thousand people were here, 30,000 people — it was a very difficult environment but I thought our guys held up well. We weren’t lucky enough to get a goal at the end of the game there, we had a flurry of four or five chances but, obviously, you take the point and you move on. I would also like to thank our fans for coming out. They were excellent and pushed our guys on in, again, a tough environment.
On defensive performance
A clean sheet is good. Everybody gets credit for that—from CJ working hard up front, to our wide guys pressuring well, to BC and Lahoud doing a good job following Kaká. Barnetta and Chaco putting in the dirty running. There was a lot of interchange with them being wide and in the center. They start the game with Barnetta in the center but you can see as it goes they drift all over, and it created some problems for the other team, so I am happy with that. Obviously, our back four performed very well; Steven Vitoria stepped in after being out for a while, did a good job. A zero on the road is a positive, something to build on.
On Michael Lahoud’s return from injury
He gave us about 75 minutes of hard work. It’s not an easy first assignment to track Kaká and deal with that, but I thought he and Brian Carroll did a good job of clogging the middle and that was kind of our game plan going in to protect things inside, force things wide. Our outside backs dealt with their outside backs. They kind of crowd the middle with their wide midfielders come inside and try to get width with their outside backs; I thought we did a good job limiting their chances and, again, only conceding the one shot on goal from Larin that was a dribbler into John that he could handle.
How do you feel going into the quick turnaround to Wednesday’s US Open Cup semifinal?
I think this builds some confidence: a clean sheet again, fixing the defensive side of things. We’ll have a few days rest; fortunately, the game’s not until Wednesday so we have so, they put a lot into it. Chicago is a do or die game, loser goes home, so have to have a survive and advance mentality. If both teams take care of business at home in the Open Cup, we host the final.
On his first MLS Start
It was great. I thought it just fine; with the fireworks and everything [laughs], I never had this before. It was a good feeling. It was nice to start and we were good in the game. A little bit unlucky that we can’t win this game, we had a couple of big chances. But I think we have to go on like this and then next time we’ll win.
On playing in a new atmosphere, the heat and humidity
I like it. Of course they are against us, but it’s a really good push to work hard on the field. It’s nice to play in a stadium like this and with fans like this so it’s a really good experience for me.
On the quick turnaroundWednesday’s US Open Cup semifinal game at PPL Park
Of course, I’m tired now, but we’ll have good regeneration and I’m sure I’ll be fit again. That was also the reason I go out; I know that we have a very important game coming up on Wednesday. So now, yeah, I have to work on myself to get ready for the next game.
On watching the last 30 minutes of the game from the sidelines
It was really hard, it was harder [then] if you were on the field. We had so many chances and, like I said before, a little bit unlucky that we didn’t score. I hope that next time we can score and win a game like this.
How did it feel playing your first game in three months?
It felt good. It felt the preparation all week for myself and then, obviously, the team, felt really good and I felt very supported by the staff and my teammates. The biggest thing for me, my mindset, was to just make sure I did my job, and share the load with Brian.
On covering Kaká
I mean, he’s — you have to be switched on, you have to know where he is, you can’t give him any breaks. And the whole time, that was part of my job, just making sure that denying him access to the ball came first. If we did that well enough we figured we had a chance of winning or getting a result.
On the team’s defensive performance
You know, we were organized, I think this is one of the first games where we looked a lot more comfortable defending the six. I thought our midfield too and back four, we did a good job of just getting behind the ball, first and foremost, and I thought we competed, we competed well, we competed like men today. It’s really good momentum going into Wednesday.
How difficult was it watching the last 15 minutes of the game after being subbed out?
You know, it was the type of game that felt like one team was going to take the points, and it felt like we were. But those are the most dangerous type of games, especially when you’re playing on the road, because you keep a team hanging around, a team with quality players like Kaká, you usually get punished. Tonight, we were a little bit off with our finishing — hit the post a couple of times. We put a lot of pressure on their goalkeeper, who came up big with a couple of saves. But I think, in the face of adversity, having a couple of guys out right now, I think it’s a great response from the team and we should be full of confidence going into Wednesday’s match.
On getting back in the lineup
Felt good, you know. I was gelling just fine with my teammates, and just forcing them to get the win but it would make them set forward.
On team’s defensive performance
I think we played as one unit and that’s kind of the statement we wanted to prove and to show because, you know, that’s the goal as defending as a unit not just as a player but all together as one.
On new teammates and the dynamic
I think we worked together fine. A lot of us trained together so that helped a lot, and then well obviously in a bigger picture, we have to prepare ourselves and I thought we gelled well and worked together fine tonight.
Orlando City postgame quotes
On the game
Obviously we’re disappointed that you don’t take 3 points at home. But the last 10 minutes I actually thought we were going to lose the game so we have actually taken something from it. We looked very, very tired toward the end. It looked like the games that we’ve played of late, and the game on Wednesday night in Toronto had an effect on us. But the players worked really hard, I can’t fault them. Obviously we’ve been bringing back players that haven’t trained in 2-3 weeks. The group looked a bit “laggy” in the end. With the last 5 minutes plus 4-5 minutes of injury time, I was relieved that we came through unscathed at the end.
On pressure of remaining games
It does but we’re at that stage in the season where every time you play anybody in your conference, especially the people around you, it has extra significance. I thought after about 15 minutes we got a grip of the game, and I thought for maybe the next hour we were the most likely. They were always dangerous on the break. But the last 10-15 we looked very lacking of energy, which is to be expected. Look at a lot of the players that we are playing tonight, a lot of them haven’t had a lot of minutes and then we’ve had some that had too many. It was a bit of both. Every game is going to be important now. I always say to the players ‘never disregard a point at any stage of the season.’
On current feeling in locker room
We still believe that we can (reach the playoffs). If we would’ve gotten the 3 points today – is there anybody in here that doesn’t think we’d be in the mix? Sometimes you take something from the game and that’s what we’ve done, taken a clean sheet. I thought Tommy did smashing when he came on, I thought that was a huge plus for us. I thought Bodz (Luke Boden) did some really good stuff. I thought we had some good passages of play in the first half. We just didn’t have that final ball and the final finish. Cyle Larin had a great header in the end with a good chance. But they also had a good few chances.
On Tommy Redding’s MLS debut
I thought he was very composed, very good on the ball, he read the game well. Tommy is a little one. He has hardly played any football all season. So, he is absolutely exhausted in there, he is shattered. It is difficult when you have to throw them in when probably they aren’t 100 percent ready. Conor Donovan unfortunately looks as though he has got a bad one; we won’t know the full extent of it until Monday. It doesn’t look good for him so that is another one we lost.
On Tally’s play and the defense overall
He made some saves that we needed him to do. I don’t want to sound flippant, but that is his job. It is to save things and keep us in the game when we need him. He did that. He came up big on a couple of occasions when it was really important. He is a quality goalkeeper. We expect him to make saves. The best goalkeepers make saves when you need it. And tonight we needed it on a couple of occasions.
On the team seeming reluctant to take shots
I spoke about it a little at halftime. We had a lot of ball toward the edge of the 18-yard box and a few openings. I said to the guys if you don’t shoot you can’t score it’s a fact. I can’t fault the players tonight for their effort. As I said, I thought one or two of the influential players were a bit tired. I think that had an effect on some of our play.
On impressions of Adrian Winter
We think he will suit the way that we play. He is experienced. He has a bit of pace he can run with the ball. I think he will give us more of an energy and more of a threat in the final third. He will be better by next week. He will have a better idea of whom he is playing with. Obviously it is never easy when you first make your debut when you come into a new club. He will give us good minutes down the stretch.
On Kaká being 100 percent
He is probably not 100 percent, but you know I thought we had a lot of good combination play around the 18-yard box in the first half. Three or four opportunities and we didn’t quite come up with the final pass or get a shot off. We should have done so. He will be okay.
On his thoughts on the game
I thought it was a game that for the most part we had the better play and I think it was good performance but we are disappointed because it was a game we wanted to win. We hadn’t had a shutout in a while. To hold the fort down and not get scored on is an important step and something that we can build off of.
On his thoughts on being the better team but not winning
The game that we play, you are going to have games that you have the better performance but you just can’t get the goal. To come away with the point and have a game where we didn’t allow the other team to score is important. Moving forward to the end of the season and playoffs, the teams that do well are the teams that don’t get scored on a lot, so that needs to be a priority for us. I think it is unfair to overlook the defensive plays that were made. A lot of players were in a position that made it a fairly easy save for me. It is something that goes unseen by a lot of people but it is something that without it there would be a different outcome so I think it was a good performance by our defenders.
On Tommy Redding’s performance
I thought he had a huge game. At one point he made a header I think it was probably the biggest play of the game. The absolute greatest save was him and he did it a couple times. He came in and looked like he had been doing this all year. I don’t think he lost the ball. He was calm and composed. It is a difficult game to be thrust into. You can’t overstate how hard that is. He came in and he did phenomenal.
On Redding’s potential
The defensive players’ role is key when it comes to composure and ability to make big plays. It is very difficult to do that and he came in and did a fantastic job. I can’t overstate how hard of a position he was put in and he handled like it was nothing. It was awesome and I am happy for him.
On pressure for Seattle
From here on out I can’t stress that games are extremely important; every single game is vital. We are disappointed on not getting three points tonight, but moving forward we are going to need to be a team that is very difficult to beat. That is going to be important for our success at the end of the season and moving into playoffs. It has to be a priority and hopefully we can be more consistent on not giving up goals.
On making his first MLS appearance
I mean it was very unfortunate circumstances for Conor Donovan. It was not the way I really wanted to come in, but it just feels like making by debut at home with all the fans was a great feeling. It was a great night for me.
Thoughts on the team
For me with all the guys, we have amazing guys and everything they say is always very helpful to me. It helps me with my confidence so it was great to hear them say that.
Thoughts about when he was checking into the game
Obviously I was very nervous, and at the same time, it all happened so fast. From the time of the injury to the time I went in in those two to three minutes. It went really quick, but after about 5-10 minutes of the game, my mind settled down and I got used to playing and being myself.
Thought on how his teammates helped him for tonight
All of the guys on the team really helped me out with coming into the game with nerves inside of me they just taught me to play quick on the ball but don’t rush to much. Enjoy it and have a good time and that’s what happened tonight.
On inconsistency of the team
It was a difficult game. I think Philadelphia’s game plan has been perfect. They stayed close enough and counterattacked well. They have created a lot of opportunities for that way. In the end we couldn’t break their defense. We couldn’t find spaces to score. I also think the team in the second half, the team was tired from the travel. In this moment we have to think about a win. We have played really well away. We need to get back into the game and work on the next games.
On changes to the lineups
I have always said that the most important thing to win is the group. To have a strong group. There are times where some players have injuries or have to go to selections. That’s why you have to have a strong group and bit-by-bit we are creating it. It takes time, but we are creating a strong group.
On moving forward
We have to play well. It was a difficult game. Next we’re up against Toronto, again. We have two games away that are really difficult, particularly Toronto who is a direct rival of ours. We have to prepare well. We have this week to prepare and get ready to win.
On Tommy Redding debut
Congratulations to Tommy because he played a very good game. He just came on the field and did very well. I think he has a very good future. I wish Tommy the best and he will for sure help us a lot.
On focus of the game
I think in this moment we have to think one game at a time. Step by step. We should have won this game tonight but we couldn’t. So now we have to go away and get some points against Seattle and Toronto. It’s time to think about winning everywhere, home and away. This is this opportunity we have to arrive at the playoffs.