Quotes & Notes - Timbers vs. San Jose Earthquakes, Sept. 21, 2011
Quotes: Portland Timbers vs. San Jose Earthquakes
Portland Timbers Quotes
Head Coach John Spencer
On the overall result:
“I think that we came out a little flat. We never started the game particularly sharp. Obviously, you go a goal up and the goalkeeper pulls out an unbelievable save on Darlington (Nagbe), we could've been two-nil up, but to be fair I think if you look at the game as a whole, San Jose was very unlucky to not get more than one point."
On taking stock of the earlier results in MLS and the playoff positioning:
"Our mentality every week is to try and win the game. I think when you have the mentality that you're trying to wait for a point you can invite trouble on yourself and have a negative mindset. For us, we just tried to go out and win the game."
On whether the draw at home feels like a loss:
"I think to everybody watching in the stadium it does because you see a great performance on Friday night (a 3-0 win over New England) and everybody just expects to come in and just go out and play well. I think San Jose came with a game plan and were very well organized. I said it was not going to be an easy game. Frank Yallop's a good coach, has his team well-organized all the time and this season they've caused us problems in all the games we've played against them. They seem to be a little bit of a bogey team for us."
On the combination of Kenny Cooper and Darlington Nagbe in the attack:
"Well, Kenny gets another goal tonight which is good for him, good for his confidence. Obviously, Darlington apart from having the goalkeeper making an unbelievable save on him in the box, I thought the two of them held the ball up well and the movement was good. I think they linked up very well together."
On the team trying to get points on the road:
"Do I think we're good enough to go and pick up points on the road? Yes, I do. We've got to have that belief in ourselves. That's what good teams do at this point of the year, they go on the road and grind out three points. It's not always about style and substance, sometimes you've just got to go and dig deep and try and get something and sneak a win. We'll approach the game against Red Bulls this weekend the same way as we approached the game tonight, try and get three points."
Defender Mike Chabala
On the overall results:
"I think the guys are disappointed, I think everybody is. This happened to us on the road in San Jose and I felt like it was against the run of play, too. I don't think at one point the guys were thinking we were going to concede a goal. You've got to come out and perform and play and it stings a little bit because we don't have many home games left and we have to take advantage of the ones we have."
On trying to get points on the road:
"If you look at the Philadelphia result, I thought the guys did really well, we kept a clean sheet in a really tough place. You can say what you will about our record on the road, but I think this team has matured a lot in the past two months. I'm looking at getting a road win and looking for the guys to rest up quick and turn around and go back out there."
Forward Kenny Cooper
On the result:
"Obviously, you want to win at home, you want to win all the time. We've got to take the point, it's better than no points, but we'd rather have three."
On if the team has matured enough to get points on the road:
"I think the group has gotten stronger as the year has gone on. I think that with each week the hope is that we can get better and I think we have gotten better. We've gone on a great run of results and I think it's probably a good sign that we're disappointed about not getting three points."
On the team tackling high-pressure games:
"I think the group has shown great professionalism throughout this year and especially in these stretches where you have mid-week games. This week is a big one with New York, they're a good team and we're really close together on points. It's a really big one and I think we're all aware of that."
On his developing partnership with Darlington Nagbe:
"I enjoy playing with him, I think he's a great talent. I think we're fortunate here that there's a lot of great depth on this team, you look at Jorge (Perlaza) and Bright (Dike) - they're both great forwards. Darlington's a great talent and I'm sure a lot of players would enjoy playing with him."
Midfielder Jack Jewsbury
On the result:
"I think going into this week our goal was six points out of our two home games. We knew we probably didn't play our best soccer of the year tonight, but there's times during the year where you have to scratch and pull out those wins even when you're not playing well."
On the team needing points on the road:
"I think we've matured a lot over the past month or two. I think the result in Philadelphia has shown how much this young group has matured and how much we've grown throughout the year. The reality of the situation now is that we have to go on the road and we have to get points to make this playoff push."
On regrouping for Saturday's match in New York:
"I think we've got to rest our legs and Friday we have to regroup and get some energy back. They're a tough team, they've got some unbelievable players that we have to keep our eyes on. At the end of the day, we've got to stay organized as a group. Defensively, we've been pretty solid recently and when you keep a team off the scoresheet you give yourself a chance to get those three points."
On needing the veteran leaders to step up in the home stretch:
"I think at this time you see some nerves start to come in. I've been on teams in Kansas City where it has come down to that last game three years in a row. A few years it was good, a few years it was heartbreak. I think it's those moments that some of the veteran guys have to step up and say we don't want to be one of those teams on the verge of making it."
San Jose Earthquakes Quotes
Head Coach Frank Yallop
On another good result in Portland:
"Obviously we played well tonight, sometimes you can't put your finger on why, but I thought our players looked very sharp offensively and defensively. I thought we were great from whistle to whistle.
"It was a great performance against a team that's very good at home so that was very encouraging. I'm very happy with some good individual performances and very happy with the team performance."
On atmosphere at JELD-WEN Field:
"We had a team meeting today saying this is going to be a fantastic atmosphere; you either sink or swim in it. If you look at our young guys, I think we're swimming pretty good."
On falling behind early in the contest:
"We showed great character to come back from that, nine minutes into the game against a team that's very dominant at home and come back into it and play some good stuff and get the reward that we deserve."
"We've shown signs of this type of game, being a 90-minute game for us. Sometimes it takes awhile to build the momentum and the players start to really believe in the way we want to play. There's been a lot of changes and a lot of stuff that's gone on this year that's out of our hands, obviously, but I think that was a true performance that we're capable of and we will play like that in the future."
Forward Khari Stephenson
On team's performance:
"We played really well tonight, we possessed the ball real well, we created chances, we got shots on goal and that's what we've been working on all year. It's just unfortunate that this is when things are actually going our way and we're doing the things we need to do."
On recent performances by the team:
"We've been playing well for the last 10 games and it's just unfortunate that we haven't won most of them. We are pushing for the playoffs and we are more than capable of winning the next few games."
On the game-tying goal:
"I was having good possession and good ball movement and Rafa (Baca) got the ball wide and played me inside. I was a little off balanced, but I tried to turn and get a good shot off. I didn't connect as well as I wanted but it went in. A goal is a goal and it's nice to have a little bit of luck going our way."
The Timbers have sold out all 16 league home matches at JELD-WEN Field this season.
In partnering with Mercy Corps for the International Day of Peace, the Timbers helped raised $10,250 through a special jersey auction which concluded Wednesday. Proceeds from the auction, which featured authentic game jerseys with commemorative International Day of Peace patches, benefitted the Portland Timbers Community Fund and Mercy Corps sports programs.
Prior to kickoff of the Timbers-Earthquakes match, D.C. United tied Chivas USA 2-2 at RFK Stadium, while the New York Red Bulls lost 3-1 to Real Salt Lake at Red Bull Arena.
Cooper’s opening strike in the ninth minute marked the second time in as many games in which the Timbers found the back of the net in the first 10 minutes of the match. In total, Portland has scored four times this season in the opening 15 minutes of a game.
Having also scored against New England last week, Cooper became just the third Timbers player this season to score goals in back-to-back matches. The others are defenders Rodney Wallace (April 14 vs. Chicago, April 17 vs. FC Dallas) and Futty Danso (May 6 vs. Philadelphia, May 14 @ Seattle).
San Jose's Khari Stephenson’s goal snapped the Timbers three-match shutout streak and ended Portland’s run of consecutive minutes without allowing a goal at 342 minute – a new season high. The 342-minute run without conceding a goal is the fifth longest in MLS in 2011.
Midfielder/forward Darlington Nagbe has recorded a goal and an assist over the last two games, marking the first time in his professional career in which he has earned points in back-to-back matches.
Portland’s goal puts the club in a two-way tie with Seattle Sounders FC for tops in MLS in goal scored at home with 30.
The Timbers own a 10-1-3 record when scoring the first goal of the match and improve to 9-4-3 in league matches at JELD-WEN Field.
- Portland and San Jose finished the two-game, regular-season series between the two clubs with a 0-0-2 record. In their first meeting on Aug. 6, the Timbers took a lead on a first-half goal by Cooper, but San Jose’s Alan Gordon leveled the score 67th minute as the match ended in a 1-1 draw.