Quotes: Portland Timbers at Vancouver Whitecaps FC
Portland Timbers Quotes
Timbers general manager/interim head coach Gavin Wilkinson
On importance of the win:
“It’s tremendous for the fans. They thoroughly deserve it, everything aside it’s something that they thoroughly deserved. It’s been a long season for them and it’s been a long season for the organization, and while this doesn’t remove some of the things that have happened over the course of the season, it’s a positive and it’s something we can take into next season.
“It’s also something that the fans get to enjoy and like I said they thoroughly deserve it. We should have had a few more wins for them, but it’s nice that there were a lot of them here today to see the team win.”
On nerves at the end of the match:
“Obviously we’ve struggled on the road all year. We were constantly going on in training about how this needs to change, how it should change, how this would send a message going into next season and we’ve addressed a lot of the demons as such. So we were very, very nervous. Our backline I thought was tremendous, I thought Steven Smith, Kosuke Kimura, (Hanyer) Mosquera, (Eric) Brunner and David Horst – how could I forget him – were absolutely tremendous tonight. And Donovan Ricketts did a job; he managed the backline very well.
On the team’s ability to hold onto the lead:
“It’s been a progression (this season). We had key players that played well, and I think that was the difference tonight. We had Jack Jewsbury who deserved that goal, he’s had a great season in many ways, and he’s been a good captain for the group. So for him to score, for him to get the group to really believe in what we were doing going into this game and into the second half, it was tremendous for the group and, removing the previous performance against Seattle, by and large our road performances have improved, we’ve scored goals, we’ve created chances - I think we had just as many shots on target tonight as they did - we had just as much possession. So there’s a lot of positives that we’re taking out of the last couple of road trips minus Seattle and tonight was a good sign that we’re going in the right direction.”
Midfielder Jack Jewsbury
Thoughts on the match:
“It’s a great feeling right now in the locker room. It was one of those games where both teams had a ton to play for, obviously them with the playoff race and us with the Cascadia Cup championship. It was our third chance at it, and to get it at this point it means a lot to this group because we never put our heads down, we continued to fight and work hard for one another and it’s a tribute to everyone on this team because we’ve been through a lot this year.”
On the relief of finally getting a road win:
“There were multiple reasons we wanted to come in here and get the win tonight, we didn’t want to go down in history as one of the teams in MLS that hadn’t gotten a road win all year so we accomplished that. But first and foremost we wanted to win the Cascadia Cup - that means a lot not only for us but for our fans and the organization and to get that here in front of our fans that travelled to watch the game means a lot.”
On his goal:
“I hit it well. The ball went forward I just trailed the play and Frank (Songo’o) got the ball, laid one back to me, I let it go and I was fortunate to find the back of the net.”
Midfielder Sal Zizzo
Thoughts on the match:
“Yeah it was a huge win for us, our first win on the road and also winning the Cascadia Cup. We had a rough one against Seattle and the last two weeks all we could think about was this game. We focused, and got a great goal from Jack [Jewsbury] and then we defended really well from then on.”
On almost scoring a second goal from a counterattack in the second half:
“We defended, and were defending well. And then we were able to pick it off and go on some counterattacks, but as the game went on later I think we tried to just keep possession instead of going straight for the goal.”
On the relief of finally getting a road win:
“It ended on a good note on the road, after all the struggles we had this season on the road, we were able to get that win at the end and we didn’t become one of those five MLS teams not to get a road win.
“We were able to pull it out and at the same time win the Cascadia Cup so we were pretty happy about that.”
Vancouver Whitecaps FC Quotes
Whitecaps FC head coach Martin Rennie
On the result of the match:
“That’s frustrating because we think the team is just where we want it to be and then we put together a performance like that. We let a lot of people down today. We had a big chance to move ourselves into the playoffs and move the club forward because there’s so much interest right now. We didn’t really take advantage of it.”
On what happened to cause this result:
“We had too many people who didn’t perform to their highest standard. We didn’t create enough chances and when we did put the ball in the box we didn’t have people in the right places in the box. They broke the game up and they were good at doing that. We didn’t manage to exploit it with good possession and we found ourselves playing longer balls than we usually ever do. Unfortunately against Portland that’s probably their biggest strength; their centre backs are powerful in the air. We played into that, I’m not sure why, we hardly ever play long balls like that. It was disappointing to see that today.”
On how to succeed and get to the playoffs:
“To be successful and get to where we want to get to players have to be able to play in big games. We’ve created big games because of how we’ve done earlier in the season. We need to get to the point where we win big games. We have done it a few times, but on a couple of big occasions we haven’t performed. Now you perform well when you lose that’s one thing, but to not perform to the standard you would expect, to not create chances, to not move the ball quickly, to have people not maybe playing at their best is disappointing.”
Forward Kenny Miller
“It was very disappointing. We had a chance to go win the game and confirm a playoff spot. We didn’t have many chances and it just seemed to be missing something tonight.”
On the outcome of the Seattle-Dallas game:
“It would be a good end to a night that was disappointing. Of course we would have liked to take care of it ourselves and win the game in front of our fans.”
On the team trying to do much:
“Sometimes that can happen, but you need everyone to do their jobs to make the team successful. There was just something missing tonight and we didn’t find it.”
Goalkeeper Brad Knighton
On the result:
“Obviously, it’s not the result we wanted to see in front of our home fans. It’s a tough one to swallow. Other than their only goal, they didn’t have any chances attacking wise. I thought we defended really well, but one lapse, one goal and it’s in the back of the net.”
On the goal:
“It seems every time I’m in goal, I’m giving up a goal of the week. Credit to Jewsbury, it was a great strike. We just didn’t take our chances here today and we’re left one nil down.”
The Timbers won their first Cascadia Cup as an MLS side; they entered the match needing a win to secure the cup.
Portland claimed the Cascadia Cup for a third time in four seasons, also winning the Cascadia Cup in back-to-back seasons as a second-division club in 2009 and 2010.
The Timbers finished 2012 Cascadia Cup play with a 3-1-2 record against their Northwest rivals Seattle and Vancouver.
Portland and Vancouver met for the fifth time in the all-time MLS series between the two Northwest rivals on Sunday. It also marked the 73rd all-time meeting the two sides in a rivalry that dates back to 1975 and the original North American Soccer League.
The Timbers remain unbeaten against Whitecaps FC as MLS foes, with a 4-0-1 record in the MLS series, including a 2-0-0 mark in matches played at BC Place. Portland finished the 2012 season series 2-0-1 against Vancouver.
Portland secured its first road win of the season on Sunday, ending an 18-match winless stretch on the road. The club’s last road win came at BC Place on Oct. 2, 2011, also in a 1-0 win over Whitecaps FC.
Sunday was the Timbers’ final road match of the 2012 campaign.
The Timbers defense held Whitecaps FC to a single shot on goal during the match, the fewest allowed by an opponent in a match this season.
Timbers Captain Jack Jewsbury scored his team-leading, second game-winning goal of the season. It was his third goal overall of 2012 and the 24th of his MLS career.
Jewsbury’s strike ended Whitecaps FC consecutive run of shutout play at 184 minutes. Vancouver had shut out each of its last two opponents entering Sunday’s match.
Jewsbury has played in 22 consecutive matches, the Timbers’ longest, current consecutive games played streak.
The Timbers scored the game’s first goal in three of their final six road matches of the season – Aug. 19 at New York; Sept. 19 at San Jose and Oct. 21 at Vancouver.
Portland is 7-4-3 this season when scoring the first goal of a match.
Goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts secured the Timbers’ fifth shutout of the season; it was his second as a member of the Timbers.
It was the Timbers’ first shutout since Aug. 31 in a 1-0 win over Colorado – a span of six games.
Midfielder Franck Songo’o recorded his fifth assist of the season and ranks second on the team in assists.
Timbers defender Hanyer Mosquera sustained a right knee injury early in the second half and was replaced by Eric Brunner in the 48th minute.
Midfielder Sal Zizzo is the only Timbers player to have appeared in all five of the matches in the Portland-Vancouver MLS series.
Midfielder Darlington Nagbe became the second Timbers MLS player to appear in 60 matches with the club, starting Sunday’s match against Whitecaps FC.
Whitecaps FC goalkeeper Brad Knighton played several matches for the second-division Timbers during the 2008 season while on loan from the New England Revolution.
- Vancouver ultimately secured the fifth and final playoff berth in the MLS Western Conference as a result of Seattle’s 3-1 win over FC Dallas on Sunday evening.