Larrys Mabiala, Timbers vs. RSL, 7.19.17
Photo by Craig Mitchelldyer

Quotes & Notes | Portland Timbers 4, Real Salt Lake 1 | July 19, 2017

Portland Timbers Quotes

Portland Timbers head coach Caleb Porter
On what he takes away from the match at this point…
“Obviously a lot of disappointment. Emotions were high. A lot of things went wrong. We brought on a lot of those things as well. There have been some games where maybe things didn’t go our way and you can maybe say it’s because of this or that. We brought most of what went wrong today on ourselves. I take responsibility for that. It was very difficult for me, the performance in the first half. Then obviously the second half everything that can go wrong went wrong. And again it was us that made it go wrong. So we have to take one on the chin. We got bloodied today. No doubt about it. It’s very humbling, embarrassing, whatever emotion. Everyone has different emotions, but those are two words that come to mind for me. Some of the other guys have other emotions, maybe it’s anger, maybe it’s frustration, but all those are swirling around because losing 4-0 on your home field, that’s not acceptable and we apologize to the supporters. They come and pay to watch a game and see a performance. To see a result, and we didn’t give them that today. And that’s extremely disappointing and it’s not something we take lightly. In saying that the only thing we can do is move forward and deal with it. We are dealing with a lot of adversity right now. We dealt with more adversity in this game in losing another player. Again there are factors in the game, but ultimately, the result didn’t go our way and we have to move on to the next game. We have to respond. And this is going to be a big test of this team’s character. In every season that I’ve been a part of there’s always been one or two of these games. And the year we won the championship we lost two games by five goals that season. So there are always results like this and when everyone joins this season to go on this journey you know it’s not going to be easy and there are going to be games like this, but when it happens it’s really hard to swallow and that’s kind of what we are feeling right now. But we don’t have time to dwell on this we’ve got to move on and learn what we can learn as quick as possible. We don’t have a whole lot of options either. Obviously we had 16 players today. That’s the lowest amount I’ve ever coached in a game in the five years I’ve been here and then we lost another guy with Chance Myers being out and we think it’s a broken ankle. We’re dealing with a lot, but again as men, myself and those players, what a great opportunity for us to show character and respond and pick ourselves back up in a short amount of time and to go on the road and show everyone that what happened today, that’s not the team that we are. That’s not who we are as individuals. We have the opportunity to go there and show our mettle and show our character and show that we can respond.”


On instances when players acted unprofessionally and how he makes sure that doesn’t keep happening…
“We'll talk about it. We'll address it. Those are conversations I have all the time and that was disappointing, absolutely. And it can’t happen again, and those are mistakes that cost the team not only this game, but puts us in an even tougher position for the next game. It’s good to have passion. It’s good to have fire in your belly. It’s good to have emotion, but being emotional, retaliating or making a decision that you know is risking a red card, that’s unacceptable."

On getting the defense back on track with all the changes…
“That second half, like I said, everything that could have gone wrong went wrong. Two red cards and a PK. It’s disappointing because the first half we didn’t play well, but it was only a one-goal margin. You can say that the goal they scored you can’t do much about that. And it happens. We started the second half well. In the first five minutes we were lively. You could tell we were going to make a push. Then we give up the PK and then we compounded it a few minutes later with a red card and then another red card and we are down 2-0 and down two men and the game is over basically. Obviously they put a couple more goals in and it feels even worse. The reality is that first 15 minutes of the second half and the decisions we made, the PK and two reds, cost us the game. Because I do think we were going to get back in that game if we don’t put ourselves in that position. And I said that to the team. That’s the biggest disappointment. Some little decisions we made. Obviously for me the two reds are the biggest ones."

On the defensive performance…
“You could see in the first half, in the back six especially, there was a little bit of tentativeness. Lack of cohesion. And a big part of that is pretty simple – it’s a new group. They’ve never played together. We lose Marco Farfan on Sunday mid-training. He was going to start the game and he goes down. And now we have to put Chance [Myers] in and shift Zarek [Valentin] over. Before that we lost [Darlington] Nagbe so now were forced to play Larrys [Mabiala] sooner than we want with Lawrence [Olum] having to move in the midfield and then we lose Chance mid-game and we literally had no outside back or holding mid subs."

On the red cards impacting the match…
“After the first half we’re still in the game and it’s 1-0. It wasn’t what we wanted, but I thought there would be a good response and there was and then we made poor decisions on the PK diving in and the red cards. The Victor [Arboleda] play you’d say what do you do there, in terms of those plays happen. It’s a younger player. He’ll learn that lesson he put himself in a bad situation. Adi’s a competitor, but he made a mistake and he let his emotions get the best of him."

On how they prepare for Vancouver with limited player options…
“Again we are trying to manage what we can manage. We are dealing with a lot of adversity. For me when I look at the game again we brought in on ourselves today. When I start a game I don’t care who is in the game. I felt like we were prepared. We knew we were managing some things. We knew it wasn’t the ideal situation in terms of lineup and personnel. But when the whistle blows we expect to perform well regardless. And we didn’t do that. I really don’t want to talk about who was in the lineup today. I’m not going to use that as an excuse because we could have performed better with the group that we started the game with. Moving forward like you said we have even more to manage. Maybe we are at the threshold and we can pull some guys up. We will see. But I think the biggest thing is we need to pray for maybe a result that can help us. I won’t say which result it is, but that would help us a lot.”

Portland Timbers midfielder Diego Valeri
On his reaction to the game…

“It’s tough, of course. It wasn’t the game we wanted to play. They opened the score quickly in the game. I think in the first minutes in the second half we were in a good position to get a goal, and then with the penalty kick and the red cards it changed the game quickly. If you look at the result, there’s no excuse of course. Now we have a game on Sunday, so we need to rest well and think about Vancouver.”

On dealing with injuries and the red cards during the match…
“It’s really hard to scout the game. Maybe the first half we can scout it and see how we can improve for the next game, but in the second half with the calls it changed the game absolutely. We need to be calm in this moment, restart again and think about the next [game] because this is soccer. We need to think in the present.”

On whether or not he’s played with the number of players that will be out on the depth chart…
“Never, to be honest, but it is what it is. We need to keep fighting and keep giving everything we have. It’s a moment. In soccer, you have different moments during the season and we need to have our heads up and keep playing, keep working and keep trying to get as much positive things we can.”

Portland Timbers defender Zarek Valentin
On tonight’s match…
“It was a little bit chaotic. I don’t think we came out as good as we should’ve in the first half giving up an early goal. It was a pretty decent hit from Kyle [Beckerman]. We could have made it a little bit more difficult, but it was a decent hit. I think we could have come out with more energy and should have done that. We should have had more control in the first half. We didn’t play very well. The second half… It’s almost not even football to me. It’s tough. All the red cards happened very quickly. Next thing you know, both teams are playing down a man, we’re down goals and it’s just a very weird situation. They always say in life that you learn most about yourself through adversity. Everyone can go through easy times with a smile on their face and a breeze, but you learn a lot about yourself when you have to go through tough times. This one is not an easy one for us to take. Losing 4-1 sucks, no matter what, whether you’re down a man or not. You don’t like doing that. Luckily a Cascadia game is coming up in a quick turnaround and we can go back and focus our attention on that because the easiest way to get over a tough loss is to put in a good performance and get three points away.”

Real Salt Lake quotes

Real Salt Lake head coach Mike Petke

On his team opening the first 15 minutes with a goal after being the team that has conceded the most goals in the first 15 minutes this season…
“Listen, I never really spoke about it for many reasons, but in all honesty, the first 10 games or so I was here, we had a lot of injuries. We were depleted. It’s not to take away from the guys that were playing at all, but we have a full roster now. We have guys that make guys fight for their spot and it raises the level in practice every week. So it’s a joy. It’s a joy that we’re finally putting things together. You just sense once we get everyone back and healthy and we’re fighting for positions, the talent is there. It’s a joy to watch.”

On if his team is coming together defensively…
“We’ll see. It seems that way. The last couple of games, even the [game against Manchester United]. We did give up two goals, but that’s two goals to Man United. I like more of the stuff I see, even in scoring four goals tonight, six goals against LA, it’s not really about the goals to me. It’s about how we created those goals. It was the other opportunities we had, the other shots that we created and our balance throughout. That’s what we’ve been preaching the last month and to see them applying that on the field, it’s great for a coach to see that.”

On his team’s transition play…
“They’re high-quality players to begin with. Every coach needs good players. There’s no secret to it. In professional sports, if you don’t have good players, doesn’t matter how good a coach you are. It’s very rare that you’re going to succeed. My hat’s off to them for their talent. As far as listening, that’s the second part of it. For 10 days now, well for four months, but the last 10 days, to go through things specifically and stop and put them in the right positions and explain to them and have them apart of the process as far as me not just dictating, but collaborating with them almost. Having them buy in and then to see it on the field. Three of those goals, besides the penalty kick were plays that we worked on over the last ten days. The runs, the off-ball movement. It’s fantastic.”

Real Salt Lake defender Tony Beltran
On the growing confidence of the team…
“That plays a part, but even more than that is the belief. I think with this break and even before that, Mike [Petke] has instilled a belief in this side. It’s been infectious and winning has been infectious and I think now that we have that feeling we want to keep it going.”

On how the win helps move the team up the table…
“We talked about it before the game. We knew where we’re at in the standings. We know what we need to do to get in the playoffs and tonight was the first step in that. Fantastic away result, getting the three points and now we need to keep it rolling at home. Three games at home. We haven’t had that all season, so it’s a big time opportunity for us to keep it going and make a statement.”

Real Salt Lake midfielder Kyle Beckerman
On his goal…
“I initially got it and was thinking of whipping something across for the back post and then didn’t really see any runs. So I thought I’d give it and hit and it went in. We were knocking it. We had some decent play there, just kind of passing it around and had some numbers over there. Found myself in space. First I kind of looked to whip it across for the back post and nobody was making the run so I thought ‘let’s just have a go and see what happens.’ Sometimes they go in.”

On if he expected such a big result in Portland…
“You never think you’re going to come in and get a big score line. We have to bring ourselves back to earth quickly and get ready for Saturday. It’s always a hard game here in Portland. We’ll take it and keep moving.”

Notes:

·         Wednesday’s game marked the 118th consecutive sellout for the Timbers at Providence Park.

·         Jack Barmby scored his first goal of the season. The finish was Barmby’s second career MLS goal.

·         Ben Zemanski recorded his first assist of the season and the 11th of his MLS career. 

·         Larrys Mabiala made his MLS debut with a start in Wednesday’s match. 

·         Chance Myers made his Timbers debut. 

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