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Postgame Quotes: Revs 3, Red Bulls 2

Postgame quotes after the Revs defeated the New York Red Bulls at Gillette Stadium on May 29, 2010.

On the Revs’ response to Preston Burpo’s injury …
I think from the time that it happened to halftime, I think was the most important time. You could see how upset players on both sides were, particularly Sainey (Nyassi) and (Joseph) Niouky, so they did well and gathered themselves as well as they could. Unfortunately, there was a game to be played after that, so we just went out and made sure we were doing this for Preston (Burpo) … strange game, it could have been 5-4.

On Bobby Shuttleworth coming in and settling quickly with a save before halftime…
It was huge. It was good. It looked pretty straightforward and easy. He had a couple like that as well, so obviously he’s going to get a chance and we’re pretty confident he’ll come in and do well.

What can you say about Shalrie (Joseph) that hasn’t already been said. He’s huge for us, whether it’s challenging, passing, encouraging, cajoling, you name it he’s doing it … well, that’s why he’s captain. You need people to bring you up and pull you together and that’s exactly what he did.

Cory’s hamstring strain, for me, I’ve never seen anybody with a hamstring strain either finishing a game or playing properly. And we just felt that it was too big a chance to take. It could have torn completely after two minutes and we thought it was just better to leave him out. But the two guys did a pretty good job, Pat (Phelan) and (Joseph) Niouky in the middle. (Chris) Tierney did a good job with Shalrie (Joseph), and we scored some goals as well.

Edgaras (Jankauskas) can hold the ball for fun. He’s obviously 16-foot-12, as well, so he’s pretty good in the air. And having (Zack) Schilawski in there, it’s a good combo. And obviously (Zak) Boggsy, you know, Sainey (Nyassi) wasn’t quite himself after the incident in the first half, so we decided to get Boggsy on and try and get him out there.

Unfortunately, I’ve seen a couple (of injuries like that). Not too many, but it’s part of the game. It was a straightforward challenge, there was no malice in it at all, but it was one of those things that unfortunately Preston’s the one that came out it the worse. As far as the challenge was concerned, I have no problem with that. He was going for the ball and these things happen.

On getting three points …
I think it was huge, absolutely huge. We’re at home, and we certainly need the points. And we got them under strange a circumstance, that’s for sure. But nonetheless, we’ll take them.

On the injury to Preston Burpo …
It was just horrific. It was emotional to start off with. A lot of the guys just turned around and started crying. I didn’t start crying, but Preston (Burpo) was so brave; he came out and sacrificed his body for the team. I just wanted to go over there and console him and hold his hand and tell him how much we really appreciate what he’s doing. I was just going over there and console him.

On the team’s response to the injury …
I’m very proud. We tried to hold our heads up high and try to keep battling. With the injury, a lot of people don’t want to watch and a lot of people can’t deal with it. We’ve got a young group on this team and for them to step up like that – for us to step up like that – and keep battling and keep playing shows this team has character and a lot of heart in every one of the guys on the team.

On the team’s huddle before play resumed after the injury …
I told them just to keep their heads up and focus on the game. You can’t do anything about it – it happened and you just go out there and do it for Preston (Burpo) and ourselves. You’ve got a lot of people that are depending on us, so you just hold you head up and play soccer.

I just turned and I saw Kheli (Dube) made a run wide and he pulled the defensemen back - great movement tonight off the ball - and I just wanted to dink it in there for Marko (Perovic) on the first one. He did it all by himself, off of his weaker foot, and he finished it – great finish. The second one was just a great ball by (Joseph) Niouky to find me and then from there I turned and then I saw I could dink it in there. For Zack (Schilawski), he did well to finish it own his own. They were both finishing with great quality and heart and I’m just trying to play that ball in there for them and once I get it in there, I know their quality is high. They did great tonight by scoring it.

I try to go for the homerun pass. Stevie (Nicol) likes me to keep a little bit more possession. But at that point, I knew we needed three points, especially being in a hole and struggling this season. It’s huge that we got a win tonight and that can keep us going until we get a break.

On participating in training during the past week …
For the Toronto game, I decided to travel over there to get back – not even train first. This week was good. I got to bang it around with the lads and talk a little bit and we knew what we had ahead of us today. Tonight we came out, pushing the game trying to get the three points and we got them and we got our work done.

We're just happy to get three points. The big thing tonight is Preston (Burpo) going down. We're so happy we were able to win it for him. He's been a warrior for us all year. It's just a tragic injury for him, but we're happy to get the “W” and get some momentum going into Seattle.

(Preston Burpo’s injury) is awful to see. It really rocked us. It definitely did for a while, but we came together as a team and decided there were two ways to react to it. One, you can think about it and sob for him, or you can play on and win the game for him. That's what we decided to do.

I was horrified. There's no two ways to say it. Preston (Burpo) is such a good guy. It couldn't have happened to a better guy, so it was just awful to see. We're going to pull together for Preston and make sure he has all of the support he needs and hopefully he'll bounce back.

(The win) was crucial. We came into this game thinking it was a must-win for us. If we can get a result at Seattle, then we'll feel like we have some momentum going into the World Cup break. Then we'll have some time to get our fitness back a little bit, get some key players back and go forward from there.

I was just trying to get in early and trying get it in behind the defense and sometimes that happens when they’re tracking back. It’s just fortunate that it ended up in the back of the net.

We knew coming into the game that it was a huge game and an opportunity for us to get back in the race as far as the Eastern Conference goes. Obviously, we never want something like that to happen to one of our teammates, especially Preston (Burpo), who has been rock solid and the heart of the team so far this year. I think one of most difficult parts is trying to stay focused when something like that happens, and I think we did a pretty good job of that and wound up getting the victory.

It was good to get a win. Obviously it has been a long time and it’s what makes the game fun, first and foremost. It’s so much more fun when you’re winning games and hopefully we can turn this into a streak.

Beginning of the second half, I think we started out well the first couple of minutes, until the lapse there on the goal. I think there’re two ways to approach the situation: either to sob about it or go out there and win one for him. Unfortunately Preston (Burpo) got hurt there making a great play for us, something he’s been doing for us all season. So it was really important for us to come out there and get the three points for him.

This is huge for us. we are going to look at this as a turning point in our season. We played much better than we have in the past few games. We gave them some soft goals, but, on the whole, I think it was a much better performance and its always nice to end a streak like that at home. Definitely the game in Seattle is a big game heading into the break; we have never lost to them. I don’t want to jinx us but if we can get a result there and go into the World Cup break on that little run, that momentum will be huge for us going forward.

Well I got to play in a game a couple of weeks ago in the Open Cup, so it was good to get my feet wet with that. Obviously it was great to get out there, but I feel awful for Preston (Burpo) and hope he is okay. It was good to get out there though, and I had a lot of fun.

It was good to get a touch on the ball right away and it felt good to get that out of the way. I needed that to feel comfortable and get in the flow of the game, so it was good to get that right away.

It helped that we were two men up, but I thought we did well. We kept the ball well. Obviously, it helped when they went down a few guys, but it’s good to get a win and get back on the right path.

(Matt Reis) has been in training with us. He’s great to train with and he has obviously been instrumental in improving my game and has helped my game a lot. I trust in him; he is a veteran and he knows what he is doing. He has been around the league and is one of the best goalies in MLS, so he definitely helps a lot and I am really grateful for that.

It was an unexpected situation but I always try to stay ready, stay alert, keep watching the flow of the game, try to stop dozing off, so that if I am called upon, I am ready to go and ready to play. I like to talk a lot, so it keeps me in the game when I stay active. When I am not getting a lot of touches, I just keep talking to the guys and help them wherever I can.

I timed a run there on the offside line at the 18. Shalrie (Joseph) got the ball there and laid one up and I just tried to find a gap there and make a run. Shalrie weighed that perfectly and slipped it right between the goalkeeper and the defender so I could get onto it and just flipped it into the goal.

I just tried to time it. When he picked his head up, I had a good idea of what he was going to do. As a player, you pick that up: as a forward if you make eye contact with a guy on the ball, you make that connection. And you can’t say enough about the pass. He had two - the one to Marko was just as good as he weighed it perfectly.

With me and Kheli (Dube), it’s been a work in progress all season. We are working better together making runs off the ball and also defensively as far as where we are supposed to be in the counter attack and clearing balls and stuff like that.

(Possession) is what we have been preaching: can we keep more possession and be a little better with our passes. Obviously that has been in issue earlier in the year. It’s been a concern and something we have been stressing as a team.

It was almost must-win, or at least that was the vibe in the locker room before the game. I thought we deserved it - I definitely thought we deserved it - we had a lot of the ball. I thought we were unlucky to give up the first goal.

Yea that was bad, especially for a guy who has been so big for us making another big play. It’s tough and you don’t want to see a guy go down like that. A lot of the guys were shaken up and I think we were fortunate that it happened so close to half time so that we could get in here and get it back together. (Preston Burpo’s) brought leadership. He’s vocal - one of the most vocal guys on the team - and he’s made big plays for us all season; a lot of leadership, but also a lot of big plays. He has a lot of experience and is not afraid to share it. If I have a question he is sure to answer it and all the older guys have been great to me.

You don’t want to focus on anything other than soccer, and when you see one of your teammates go down like that, it’s tough. But at the time we needed a win and we needed to finish the game and that’s what we thought was best at halftime. We had to focus.

We setup for the first half, and we thought it was a joke. The first half, it was absolutely ridiculous. They had one chance and scored twice. It was one-way traffic for 45 minutes. We’re in the locker room, down 2-1 and we just said keep going with the passing game, keep possession and get our chances and we got beat. When we got fouled early, it seemed that there was one team on the pitch. We then of course got two red cards and that changed the game.

Because we are subbing, normally we can play 10v11, but we dropped too much when we defend. And when we won the ball, it was too long of a way to attack and we lost it too early. We were sitting too deep. I feel really, really sad for the players because they all played excellent and the attitude, the spirit for 90 minutes - even if you are two down. Still, we had some set plays that were not really sharp and we were only nine players. Overall, I must say that I am pleased with the players’ attitude.

You know it’s very similar to the Columbus game last week, and the Seattle game before. It’s a certain situation where it seems like we only give one or two opportunities a game, and we’re playing well defensively, but the other team is capitalizing on those one or two things. We had an own goal tonight, we had a miscommunication on the first goal, and the third goal was a garbage goal. We had this game tied at the very least. Down two men didn’t make it easy for us. It was two different teams out there. They just capitalized on their opportunities. It’s very tough to swallow.

The turning point of the game was the two goals we let in in the first half, as well as the two goals we didn’t capitalize on that we could’ve. Especially when a new goalie had to come on - it’s horrible what happened to Preston Burpo - but a third-string goalkeeper comes on cold, we’ve got to get after him.

(The own goal is) just a fluke thing. It’s happened to me in 13 years many times. You know these balls tend to move weird. It happened to me in the second half, the ball come across and I was alone and went to clear it, then all of a sudden they gave them a corner kick because the ball is moving to me at a good position, but it swerved at the last second.

I think we played well but you know we came out empty handed. It’s disappointing because I think we had some good chances to at least tie the game up.

We conceded goals we shouldn’t have conceded, but we still managed to score two. When you play away from home and you score two goals, you should get something out of the game. Having said that, playing with nine players, it’s a hell of a job. Overall, I can say we played well. We dominated the game the majority of the game, but then when it was 9 against 11, the whole game changed.