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Postgame Quotes: Revolution 2, D.C. United 1

Postgame quotes after the Revolution defeated D.C. United, 2-1 at Gillette Stadium on Saturday, May 30.

New England Revolution head coach Steve Nicol

On Taylor Twellman’s return as a spark for the offense:
“Yes, but I don’t think that is a huge surprise. Having Shalrie (Joseph) there was really just a stop-gap. Obviously having your main striker back just lifts everybody. It lifts the crowd. And when you put Shalrie back in the midfield, that just helps, as well. It just shows you what we’ve been missing and what we’ve had to put up with so far this season.”

On the team’s response upon Twellman’s insertion into the game:
“(It was) huge. I think the second half was the biggest factor for us. Sitting watching it from where I am, I’m thinking this is more like our team; this is what we’re all about: showing some heart and playing some good soccer. The second half was clearly the best we’ve played all season. We need to start reproducing it between now and the end of the season more often.”

On Twellman’s value to the team:
“He puts the ball in the net, for starters. There’s not too many guys in the world who can do that. He also takes pressure off other players, as well. If you’re playing against Taylor (Twellman) you have to make sure that you know where he is and you have to be concerned about it, which means you’re taking your eye off something else. So even if he doesn’t touch (the ball), he’s a benefit because he opens holes for other people. I mean, you look at the goals (tonight) as the example. Two guys were with Taylor, Shalrie (Joseph) makes his run and he’s on his own and scores. That can tell you how important to us he is.”

On Kevin Alston’s performance so far:
“(Kevin) is a young guy with a lot to learn, but he’s got all kinds of attributes. His pace obviously is huge, his professionalism, he loves to defend. You don’t see too many guys get by him and he’s good in the air. He’s got a lot of attributes, and if he can pick up all the small things that come with experience and playing, he’ll be a fantastic player for us.”

New England Revolution midfielder Steve Ralston

On the Revs’ first goal:
“Taylor (Twellman) won a ball and played me on the side, and I just tried to give time to guys to get in the box. Kenny (Mansally) made a good overlapping run. Kenny brought a lot of good energy to the game when he came in.”

On the impact of Twellman’s return:
“We’re a different team, obviously. Little bit of that was contributed by the fact we kind of changed the way we played at halftime. We came in and we said we can’t just keep playing long balls. We’re going to try and pass the ball a little more. Obviously when Shalrie (Joseph) goes back to midfield, he changes the game a little bit for us there, too. So I think that made a big difference for us, too. But having Taylor (Twellman) out there, you can see how the game changed.”

On his relationship with Twellman:
“Just like I said, we’ve been together for a long time. We know each other pretty well. You know, I missed him on a couple occasions tonight, but hopefully a few more practices and I’ll find him next week.”

On the importance of the 2-1 win:
“It was huge. I mean, we don’t usually get those calls, but we’ll take it. We’ve been struggling. We’ve been fighting and battling, saying let’s just get a result. That’s part of the reason we were just hitting it long, and just trying to find a way to win a game, and tonight we fought back. We were down against a good team.”

New England Revolution forward Taylor Twellman

On how it feels to be back:
“I don’t know. It’s a little emotional, just in the sense it’s been a long haul. It’s been eight months of trying to guess what’s going on. Just thank God I figured it out. Now, granted, I didn’t expect to play 70 minutes tonight and get punched in the face right away. So we’ll see; it’s obviously a good test. We’ll see how I feel on tomorrow and Monday, it’s obviously very big.”

On his presence boosting the Revolution:
“Well, I run into the goalie a lot. (laughing) This team’s needed a pick-me-up a little bit. And that’s been the hardest part – watching them. Whether it’s just, like I said, being a nuisance in the box, running into people, just kind of helping the team do what, you know, they need to do. Obviously, when I came on, I think it helped Shalrie (Joseph) play his natural position. He scored a great goal, and (Steve) Ralston’s the best player in the league in my opinion, so he did his job. So I think it just helps everyone be able to do their own job and not try to do something else. So it’s fun, I’m just glad I’m a part of it.”

On the foul in the box:
“I’ll be quite honest, it should have been a penalty kick on the goalie five minutes before that … But at the end of the day, we got a call. I think that’s my first penalty kick that’s ever been called on me in eight years, to be quite honest. So that’s a highlight for me.”

On the team coming into the game:
“We had confidence going into the game. I know we gave up an early goal that hit the crossbar. But we came out in the second half like the old Revolution a little bit, pressing them. That was good to see and hopefully we can continue this run.”

D.C. United head coach Tom Soehn

On how the team played in the first half:
“Yeah, we were playing around very well. The unfortunate part is we didn’t get more out of it. Obviously, we hit the post a couple of times, but we were pretty sharp and created a lot of good opportunities. And I think we were a step ahead of them for the most part. “

On Fred’s role in the game:
“Once we let them get the second goal, they had some life and it was a little more difficult for us, and we got away from playing our possession game. Overall, we did what we needed to do. We just have to be more opportunistic and finish those chances and then the game is over.”

On the shift in the second half:
“Giving the goal gave them life and energy, and we got away from the things we were doing very well in the first half, like keeping possession.”

D.C. United midfielder Santino Quaranta

On the first half success:
“We played very well in the first half. I think that coming out of halftime, we have to understand as a team there is going to be waves in a game. I don’t think we adjusted well. I felt we tried to continue to attack them, and that kind of hurt us a little bit. We have to understand on the road that we aren’t going to put two halves like that together. It’s a learning process … but we hit the post twice. We have to do it ourselves and finish that also. You look back on the game and say that’s three points we let go.”

On the poor second half:
“We were way too spread out. We weren’t compact. I think that there is going to be times in a game with a wave, and we didn’t do well. Balancing our attack and our defending, we didn’t do well, and we need to do better. “

On missed opportunities:
“We should be up 3-0 no problem at halftime, the game should be over. That’s happened to us a lot this year. That’s going to be a letdown automatically. You’re not going to have a half like that again, it’s just not happening on the road. We just need to understand that.”

D.C. United goalkeeper Josh Wicks

On the penalty kick:
“(Steve) Ralston had the ball, a veteran player. All day long his balls have been ripped in, he’s going to try to get a bend on them. On his run-up, he paused, and with a pause like that, you aren’t going to get enough to get across your body. I had already made a little jump to my right, and I quickly tried to recover and get back to my left. I got a fingertip on it, but that wasn’t nearly enough to keep it out.”

On the contact with Taylor Twellman:
“It was a two-ball coming through, and if I don’t go, (Taylor) Twellman is in a position to bring it down and put it in. And if I go half-hearted, he can chip me. He’s one of those good players. My mindset was I’m going; I’m going to make a 50-50 ball a 100 percent ball. I thought that I did that fine.”