Quotes & Notes | Portland Timbers 2, Seattle Sounders FC 4 | Aug. 24, 2014

Midfielder Will Johnson made his 33rd consecutive regular-season start for Portland on Sunday

Will Johnson, Timbers vs. Sounders, 8.24.14

Photo Credit: 
Photo by Craig Mitchelldyer

Portland Timbers Quotes

Portland Timbers head coach Caleb Porter
On what he tells the team after a loss like today:
“I told them I needed some time to watch the game and dissect what just happened. Congratulations to Seattle. They took their chances well. Obviously, they have great players, a great team, a good coach and they were deserved winners today.”

On the backline’s performance today:
“Again, one of the reasons I want to watch the game is Seattle deserved to win, but I know it was a lot closer game than the score indicated. It would be easy for me spin that, but at the end of the day the only thing that matters is the score. We didn’t do well enough to get the result. We outshot them, we out-possessed them and we had more corners. The difference in the first half was Clint [Dempsey] and Oba [Obafemi Martins] finding two goals and that’s what they are paid to do and they did it. I thought we were the better team in the first half, but in the end all that matters is the scoreline. We didn’t manage situations defensively very well today. There were a lot of chances that they created that shouldn’t have been chances. But again I want to watch the tape to offer reflections to my group and to obviously figure out what we need to do next week to correct those things.”

On what the team was doing well in the first half that reflected the performance:
“It was hard to believe that at halftime we were down 2-0 the way we played. I thought we came out well. It was an even game. We hit the post, they hit the post, it’s 19 minutes in and it’s going kind of how you think it’s going to go when you are playing a good team. It’s back and forth. I thought we started well. The mentality was good. Both teams were feeling each other out. Then all the sudden we are up the field and out of nowhere they’re behind us and it’s a cross and the ball is in the back of the net. Again, that’s why Martins and Dempsey are two of the best guys in the league because they found two goals. They didn’t have very many chances in that first half. I thought we had more, I thought we had the better of it, yet we are down 2-0. In saying that, I don’t think we managed either of those two situations very well, and they punished us. It seemed like every chance they got today was in the back of the net. We had a ton and somehow couldn’t seem find the frame enough. It was a bit of a strange game. I don’t think the score is indicative of how the game and flow went, but at the end of the day it comes down to how many you put in the net. They put four in and we didn’t do well enough to deserve the result.”

On missing out on the chance to take over fifth position in the Western Conference against their rival:
“I’ve now given 25 team talks and going into this game it felt like the easiest one I had to give because there is so much motivation. Rivalry game, we are two points off the red line and the opportunity to go above the red line. We’re at home. I thought we were up for it. I thought we played well in the first half, yet we’re down 2-0 because of mistakes. That’s what’s disappointing. It’s kind of the same old story. You play well enough to win, the stats tell a story in a soccer game, but ultimately moral victories aren’t what we are looking for at this stage; we’ve got to get three points. I’d take less possession, less shots and less corners if we got three points today.”

On the importance of the upcoming match at Vancouver next week:
“It’s a massive game. It’s looking like it’s going to come down to us, Vancouver, Colorado, maybe San Jose creeps in for that fifth spot. Right now four teams – Salt Lake, LA, Seattle and Dallas – that pack is sort of running away. You never know, one of those four may stumble, but we need points. Right now, Vancouver is two points ahead of us so it’s a chance to get above them with a result. Even if we had won this game, we would have had to turn around and get a good result against them otherwise we are right back below them again. For me, what’s most disappointing in this game is the score line. We’re not used to being in games where we lose 4-2. I have to figure out how to correct what happened today so we can get a better result next Saturday."

Portland Timbers defender Liam Ridgewell
General thoughts on the match:
“We wanted to get that win to make sure we moved above the red line, but sadly we didn’t get that done. We’ve got to try, as much as we can, and forget about it and move onto the next game because it’s going to be a vital one for our season.”

On his responsibility to the defense and getting into the playoffs:
“Big responsibility. I’ve come in and I want to make the playoffs and make [it above] that red line. I take it personal. I’m sure everyone can tell how disappointed everyone is and we’ve got to try and put it right.”

On what went wrong in the defense against Seattle:
“A couple of their goals were counter-attack goals and sloppy from ourselves because one thing we knew was that they were going to try and pounce on us because we were trying to get at them. Just have to be mindful of that and try and cut it out for the next game.”

On facing the combination of Clint Dempsey and Obafemi Martins:
“Oba was looking to stretch and he’s done that his whole career. So, I think it’s something we’ve got to narrow down on and we’ve a lot to do. A bit more professionalism to not make a foul on the byline and just the fine little moments that good players like [Clint] Dempsey and Oba will score. Something we have to try and cut out of the game and stop those errors.”

On if today’s result was the first dose of adversity in his Timbers career:
“Definitely. You can only tell how good the team is when you’re down and people think that they’re not going to make the playoffs and not going to make the red line. We know we’re a good team and today’s not going to change that. Have to bounce back next week and make sure we do.”

On whether today’s defensive performance was an anomaly for the current backline:
“It was just one. It’s gone very well. You come up against two class strikers and a very good team. We’ve got to try and manage that better. The only way we can get better is working on it during the week and making sure we cut them out for next week and the nine remaining games we have left.”

Portland Timbers forward Fanendo Adi
On the battle towards moving into a playoff position:
“Sometimes these kinds of games come true and as a team you just have to give your best. Of course we gave up very important goals in the first half as well. Made a lot of mistakes, but as a team we lose together and win together.”

On what went wrong in the first half that led to Seattle’s two goals:
“Seattle just waited for us. We kept playing the ball and they let us into their half and when they got the ball, they just played on the counter. That’s just what they did and all the goals came on the counter. In the first half, it was the same situation. When we allowed the first goal, we were looking to go out there and get a goal back. So when you’re under pressure and you’re trying to get a goal back, you open all the space.”

On whether at halftime there was belief the team could still get into the game:
“Sure. We had a chat in the locker room at halftime. We still believed in ourselves that we could do it. We went out there to get one goal back as early as possible, but we couldn’t get it back early.”

Seattle Sounders FC Quotes

Seattle Sounders FC head coach Sigi Schmid
General thoughts on the match:
“Our team went out there with an attitude that we wanted to make a statement today. We talked about that yesterday and today, that we wanted to make this a statement game. This was not last year, was not déjà vu. I thought we started off the game really well. I thought we were good the first 20 minutes. Once we got into the lead, they’re a team that’s obviously fighting for their playoff lives, so they started to throw everything at us. We scored a good goal on the counter, against the run, but we knew we would get counter opportunities. That was something we were planning for. Obviously they kept the pressure on in the second half, again because they’re a desperate team and they’re looking for things. We did a good job of finishing a couple counter attacking opportunities and some good combinations. I’m very pleased with our attitude and the result today.”

On Obafemi Martins getting back to scoring goals:
“It’s really important for Oba. It’s also important for Clint [Dempsey] to get on the board. The combinations were good. We had talked about making sure we get wide a little bit. The first goal came from a great combination between [Brad] Evans and [DeAndre] Yedlin and Evans got behind and that low, hard cross. We’ve been talking about that. The second goal, I think Oba had the assist on that one to Dempsey. The second goal, what people don’t realize, is Dempsey made an 80-yard run to get into the box on that thing. He was at least 15 yards behind the center circle. That’s just tremendous effort and awareness and commitment. That was good. Getting Oba on the board for the second one, where he dribbles through is obviously a good goal for him. Dempsey sets up [Chad] Barrett who comes in, continues to score goals for us. Those are all good things. Strikers love scoring goals.”

On where this victory ranks in terms of away victories for him:
“This one’s near the top. This one’s definitely near the top. It’s a good feeling just because of everything that’s been going on. You look right now, we went through a five-game stretch beginning on Houston where we played five games in 14 days. Correct me if I’m wrong, but in that stretch we went 3-1-1. We beat Chicago as well in the Open Cup and everybody was talking about how we’ve only won two of our last five in the league or two of our last six in the league. We’re 3-1-1 in our last five games in a 14-day stretch. I think that’s what our team is. Sometimes the Open Cup victories don’t get included in that stuff. I always love it when you guys write this, I’m going to pick on you guys right now. I love it when you guys write this, when there’s an offseason and you say the guy in March hasn’t scored a goal since October. Well, you know, it’s tough to score a goal when you’re on break. For me, that’s what I look at. That’s what we talked about as a team and that’s why we said ‘Stay positive’ after the last game. Sometimes those things happen. The attitude of our team is good.”

Seattle Sounders FC forward Obafemi Martins
On if today’s result was a statement:
“We just want to play and try to win games. That’s what we did today. We’re looking forward to the next game.”

On all the moves leading up to his goal in the second half:
“I can’t really remember. I guess I had a little bit of luck. I nearly slipped, but still with a little bit of luck I was on my feet and tried to push the ball in front of me. I end up seeing the ball in front of me and ended up scoring it.”

On his awareness of the fans in the crowd:
“The fans, they’ve been great. They’ve been supporting and everything, even when we’re not doing well, losing and everything. They’re still there, supporting us. We have to make them proud and we did that today. Hope they’re happy now and we have to continue to do our best.”

Seattle Sounders FC forward Clint Dempsey
On whether this result means more based on Seattle’s recent results:
“It’s always good to win. There’s a good feeling around the team. We’ve been a little bit down in terms of our energy with not getting the right results, but getting a win like today definitely lifts the spirits and hopefully we can push on and go on a run.”

On his run to score Seattle’s second goal:
“It was a great ball from Oba. When he’s on the ball, you just have to make good movement to get on it. He played a good ball and I was able to score on that one, but also on the one where I hit the post, he played another good ball as well. Not only does he score goals, but he creates opportunities for others and I thought he played really well today.”

On what statement a win like this makes:
“It’s a long season. In big games, you want to step up and play well. I thought we did that today. It’s not just doing it here and there. It’s doing it on a consistent basis and that’s what got us up the table early in the season. Just that consistency and hopefully we can get back to that.”

Notes:

  • Sunday’s crowd of 20,814 marked the 64th consecutive sellout at Providence Park. The Timbers have sold out every regular-season match at Providence Park since their inaugural MLS season in 2011.
     
  • Midfielder/forward Darlington Nagbe returned to the starting lineup for the first time since July 27 against Montreal. Nagbe, who sustained a knee sprain against the Impact, missed matches on Aug. 2 (LA Galaxy) and Aug. 9 (Chivas USA), before playing 37 minutes as a substitute on Aug. 16 (New England).
     
  • The Timbers have only lost four regular-season matches at Providence Park since 2013 (14-4-12 overall).
     
  • Defender Danny O’Rourke made his 200th career MLS appearance on Sunday at Providence Park. O’Rourke, who made 147 appearances for Columbus from 2007-2013, has appeared in 12 games since joining the Timbers on May 27, 2014.
     
  • Midfielder Will Johnson made his 33rd consecutive regular-season start for Portland on Sunday.
     
  • Portland’s 13 corner kicks set a new Timbers MLS club record, surpassing the previous record of 12 set on May 12, 2013, against Chivas USA.
     
  • Portland’s 21 shots on Sunday ranks tied for second-most in a single match this season.
     
  • Midfielder Diego Valeri became the Timbers MLS career leader in corner kicks (175) after attempting eight against Seattle.
     
  • After scoring two goals on Sunday, Portland’s 41 goals scored this season through 25 matches ranks as the third-most in MLS. The Timbers are on track to record 55 goals this season, surpassing the MLS-club record mark (54) set during an impressive 2013 campaign.
     
  • With two saves on Sunday, goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts reached 200 saves in his Timbers MLS career.
     
  • The loss snapped Portland’s five-match, home-unbeaten streak against Sounders FC in all competitions. Prior to Sunday, the Timbers last lost a home match against their Cascadia rivals on July 10, 2011.
     
  • Portland has registered at least one point in 13 of the last 18 regular-season matches, logging 27 points during the span.
     
  • Midfielder Rodney Wallace recorded his first assist of the season on Sunday, delivering a pinpoint cross to forward Fanendo Adi in the 73rd minute.
     
  • Forward Fanendo Adi became the first Timbers MLS player to record a brace in three separate matches this season. Adi has tallied two goals in a match three times this season (May 28 at Chivas USA, June 7 at Real Salt Lake and Aug. 24 vs. Seattle).
     
  • Adi became the second Timbers player to register two goals in a match against Sounders FC this season. Midfielder Diego Chara scored a brace in a 4-4 draw against Seattle on April 5 at Providence Park.
     
  • Adi’s brace at Providence Park on Sunday marked his first two career goals at home for the Timbers this season. The forward has scored four goals away from home in 2014.