|Postgame Quotes: Revs 0, Earthquakes 0
Postgame quotes after the Revolution and San Jose Earthquakes played to a scoreless draw on May 15, 2010.
NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION HEAD COACH STEVE NICOL
First and foremost, we’ve been solid. We’re happy with a clean sheet. I think the only thing that’s letting us down is that quality in the final third. We had numerous occasions where we might have played a better pass, or had a better finish … it probably took us about 10 minutes to get settled, after that, we ran the game. But just that little bit of quality in the final third let us down. Preston (Burpo) made a good save second half, though. But I think overall we deserved to win the game. We were disciplined and we defended pretty well, but just that quality was missing in the final third.
[Pat Phelan] and Cory (Gibbs) were great. (Ryan) Johnson is a handful; he puts himself about. I don’t think we gave him a kick tonight, which is what we asked them to do. So from that point, we’re happy, but we want to win games and at the end, tonight’s point might be important, but we want three.
I think you see the team we’ve been putting out recently. I think one of the biggest factors tonight was fatigue. We could see with 25 minutes to go that guys were beginning to flag. Not just the guys we brought off, but the guys that were still on have played in all these games we’ve had. Again, to be playing the games we have and to keep going and get a clean sheet, is good.
Kheli (Dube) played 90 minutes in the central midfield the other night. It’s a different position, but it’s still a lot of running. Zack (Schilawski) played 90 minutes, as well. We have to try to be smart, but also have to try to win games and try to get points. It’s a tough combination, especially when you’re struggling for numbers.
We want to play with two guys up front; we want to be attacking teams. Circumstances at the moment dictate that we can’t go about it the way we want to. We want to be putting teams under pressure all the time and getting forward and attacking. Just because of circumstances we’re lacking numbers, lacking personnel. We have to do what we have to do. But saying that, I think we deserved to get the three points tonight.
NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION DEFENDER PAT PHELAN
A couple inches one way and (Joseph Niouky’s) a hero. But we struggled to get offensive opportunities tonight, for sure, so if I was in that same situation, I would have done the same thing. All the credit to him.
If we have everyone healthy, I think [we go back to the 4-4-2]. It also depends on the opponent and what Stevie (Nicol) is comfortable with. The good thing is people are being forced to be comfortable playing out of position, so have some flexibility when everyone’s healthy. That’s definitely a positive.
I prefer the midfield. I feel like I did half as much running as normally I do playing in the midfield. But wherever they need me at this point for the team, I’m glad to play there.
On the match-up against Ryan Johnson
He’s a dynamic player at times. He’s somewhat predictable. So is (Chris) Wondolowski. Their runs didn’t give us too many problems. That being said, if you fall asleep for a second, he’s got the pace and the physical ability to burn you. He almost did a couple of times when we had some lapses. On the whole, I think the communication with Cory (Gibbs) and myself – and Kevin (Alston) – was very good so they didn’t give us too many problems.
On making the adjustment as a defender …
I’ve definitely had my fair share of practice. It’s kind of ironic – I played a little holding mid in as a senior in college – and Stevie (Nicol) said had I not and been a true defender he wouldn’t have [traded for] me. So here I am playing center back – and I know it’s out of necessity - but I think I did alright. There’s not much difference between being in a back four and a midfield four – more defensive responsibilities, but the basics are pretty much the same. It meant being in good spots, so it’s not too big of an adjustment.
NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION DEFENDER KEVIN ALSTON
On playing the full 90 minutes after coming back from injury …
It felt great. Last game was just one of those things where it’s more preventative than really being injured. I just didn’t want to make it worse. It was a little tight, and I had the week off so it felt a lot better tonight.
I think we did a lot of good things tonight. We possessed a lot more, we were a lot more organized. We had plenty of chances, just unlucky not to put one away. But I think we can take a lot away from this game.
It’s frustrating (coming away with one point), but you’ve just got to deal with it. It happens. Any team can beat any team in the world, so it’s just one of those things. It’s frustrating, but like I said, we can take a lot of good from it.
I think we were a little more organized. I think that being used to this field helped us out a little bit. They have the narrower, slim field and I think they’re a little more used to that. I think we were just aware of marking and keeping people in check this time.
On a congested May schedule …
You’ve got to deal with it. It’s such a long season. We have players on this team who can come in and fill the roles. We’ll rest when we have off time; we’re not going to go crazy with practice during the week. So we should be alright; we should get through it.
On Pat Phelan’s performance as a defender …
I thought he did well. Pat (Phelan)’s a good player. He used to be a center back. He plays more defensively anyway, so I think he was used to that and he filled in well.
SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES HEAD COACH FRANK YALLOP
I thought it was an evenish game. I thought that we had some good chances to score. Bobby Burling had a really good chance. Ryan Johnson had a good chance. I thought we shaded it a little bit with a quality of chances but it was a pretty even game. It felt the pitch was sticky and that both teams struggled a bit with that. A point on the road is always good - three is excellent - so we are happy with that. We have not conceded a goal for three games straight, which is good so positives come out of this.
Do you find it difficult to get rhythm in the first half? It seemed like there were a lot of fouls being called?
We came in at halftime and I said that we are matching them and probably outplaying them a little bit, so lets push it and win the game. I think that on another night we would have scored a goal and maybe gotten away with it. (Joseph) Niouky hit the post with a good long-range shot and, other than that, I didn’t really feel threatened. So good defending by us and we had some good chances and we take a point out of it and move on.
It felt like it wasn’t our night. It’s a game. Bobby (Burling) had a great run, great ball in, great run, he’s in on the goalkeeper alone and he could have finished that. Bobby scored last week and is playing real well so he’s saving up.
Health is a big key. (We had) no (Jason) Hernandez for much of last year and Bobby Burling had that injury problem last year. So we had a lot of things that weren’t going well for us and Andre Luiz was out towards the end of the year. He only joined us in the middle of the summer … I thought the unit was strong and we have a very decent squad and everyone is fighting for spots. It’s healthy competition, which breads good play, and I am really pleased with the performance.
Bobby (Burling) and Joey (Gjertsen) have been excellent. You can’t say too much about the defending and I think that they defend great. I think that makes them two-way players that can really help us on this team. Bobby (Burling) has done a great job on that side and Joey (Gjersten) on the other. I think that they were a little unlucky tonight not getting that shot on target but I think we had some good performances.
Joey (Gjertsen), I’ve known him for six-seven years and Vancouver is the first place I saw him play. I liked him from there and he’s been under contract for a little bit and it usually costs too much to get them from the A-league or USL. It’s difficult to get them. He was out of contract this year and I spoke to his agent and I worked desperately to get him in. We made sure we got him. He’s a good, good player, two-way, tough, clean player.
SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES DEFENDER JASON HERNANDEZ
I think we spent a lot of time and training trying to work hard on being tough to break down starting all the way up on the forwards and coming all the way down to the back line. We’ve done a good job communicating and it showed a lot these few games, we got 3-out-of-4, 4-out-of-5 and we got a clean sheet, so its been good so far.
It seemed like they were covered pretty direct at times, which is pretty easy for us to defend. We kind of know it’s coming. Usually the tough times are when the dynamic runs are coming out of the midfield - there’s a lot of commotion in there - so for the most part, if it’s direct, it suits us pretty well. Bobby Burling did a great job in the air, personally, and Ramiro (Corrales) did a good job on tucking in behind. I felt that it looked good out there and, other than a really good shot they had which hit the post, I thought we were pretty much okay in the back.
I think to come on cross-country flight and to play a team that backed us against the wall on a turf field and come out 0-0 is a great performance for us. Obviously we would like to get three points, but I’m sure they could say the same thing. We glad to just put a good solid effort in and leave with a point. It’s good enough for us, we’re happy with it.
SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES FORWARD RYAN JOHNSON
It’s always nice to come back home and play in front of my mother and father, friends and family. It’s always fun when I come back. Obviously, it feels good.
We defended well. We created some chances. On the road, you don’t really get to create many chances. Getting the chances we did, we could have won the game and that’s something positive to take from it
Once I saw the ball that Joey (Gjertsen) played, it was a good ball from him. Kudos to (Preston) Burpo for a good save because I really thought that I had that one.
Number one thing that we’re trying to do is to keep the clean sheets, and defensively do the best that we can and keep the ball out of our own net. And when we get our chances, try to put them away. We did a good job of doing our things defensively from top to bottom, so we’re happy about that and any time we can get a point on the road is good.