Meghan Klingenberg, Thorns vs Sky Blue FC, 08.03.19
Photo by Craig Mitchelldyer

Quotes & Notes | Portland Thorns FC 1, Sky Blue FC 1 | Aug. 3, 2019

NWSL POST-GAME QUOTES
Portland Thorns FC vs. Sky Blue FC
Aug. 3, 2019 – Providence Park (Portland, Ore.)
Final: Portland Thorns FC 1, Sky Blue FC 1

Portland Thorns FC Quotes

Portland Thorns FC head coach Mark Parsons
On Sky Blue's recent performances at Providence Park...
"Well I think to simplify tonight, they played really well. They played really, really well...But I thought they had a great team effort and some great individual performances. Now saying that you know, we had some really good moments in this game, we were a bit sleepy in the first 10-15. And then I thought we grabbed control and we had some really good chances. Second half, sleepy in the first 10-15, grabbed the game took control and then they pinned us for a couple of chances. And then we obviously took it over for the rest of the game. So it's yeah, we had way more of the game tonight that should have produced more good chances and goals that didn't. And yeah, I felt like the first half, we were treading thin water and going in nil-nil when it shouldn't have been. It was good, obviously, to see Sincy [Christine Sinclair] do what she does best and score. And then the second half, yep, had the chances and didn't take them and switched off at a key moment to let the Sky Blue was back in the game."

On his thoughts of what happened after conceding in the second half...
"Yeah... you see it comes from an area that one, we're focused on we're very good and we've often taken advantage of other people so disappointing to see us just switch off for a split second. But just a few moments tonight, there were a few moments where we were caught asleep. And yeah, it makes things a little bit difficult. More difficult this week. You go a game at a time. This was a game that we felt very good about in our preparation. And you know, now we have a short turnaround for Tacoma. And yeah, I think we sometimes make things a little bit harder for ourselves. But it also brings out the best answer no doubt that this forces us to dig deep and come up big Wednesday."

On what was and wasn't working for the team going forward...
"I think we were struggling on the tactical side where we have to keep width. And when we're building and when we're attacking we have to keep width, but at the same time providing width we want the rotations to be able to get into specific spaces and pockets. We did it extremely well against Houston where we were pinning them on with our width, but getting back in between. We got stuck tonight trying to do those two things and not doing either. Sometimes we had no width and we only had central options, which allowed Sky Blue compact shape to keep us quiet. Or we did have the width and we weren't finding those people in between the lines that we have previously. So I think we were just getting stuck between those two areas when we're a team that likes to provide both because that gets us, it gives us the options where we can hurt them. We love to hit wide areas and produce opportunities from there. And we've been a team building on creating in more central areas as well and I felt like we've done that the last few games and we didn't do that enough tonight. 

On Midge Purce's performance...
"Yeah, fingers crossed. She's okay. I thought she was in all over the place. I thought she was extremely, extremely good and effective with her movements and her quality against Houston. She had a couple of targets that she wanted to improve and she took some steps on wanting to improve on that and showed that tonight. And I think tonight summed it up, there was only one way to stop Midge Purce and that was to do what Sky Blue did and unfortunately someone else didn't do what they needed to and this game is a lot more difficult than it should have been."

On the team playing a more direct approach tonight...
"I feel like that sometimes we just weren't providing the width. And then there were times [Hayley] Raso was out there on an island and we weren't switching the ball and getting the ball there quick enough. So I think we just kept getting stuck between trying to provide both options in having width and when you have width you stretch oppositions and then you find spaces. We weren't doing both at the same time. We weren't holding width and occupying central spaces in front of their backline and behind their midfield and it's something we like to do. So If you don't do both, then you have less options and you've got to be clean and everything's got to be perfect. And there's moments where we were very good and created good looks and I thought mostly we controlled transition really well. It's actually when Sky Blue actually had a bit of possession and sustained possession, they started getting some looks and they were good when they had the ball and used it. It's normally on the counter-attack where they're lethal but we did a good job in controlling that..”

Portland Thorns FC forward Christine Sinclair 
Thoughts on the game...

“In general, your typical NWSL game. I mean it's a game we dominated and should have won if we had put away our chances when we had them and then they get one at the end or towards the end and they buried it. Yeah, just not good enough from the Thorns tonight.”

On playing against Sky Blue FC at Providence Park ...
“I mean, they’re an organized team that you can tell fight for each other. Yeah, they just never give up. Defensively, super organized, super compact and when they get their chances, they put them away. Obviously, I might be a bit biased, but I think Kailen [Sheridan] is one of the best goalkeepers in the world and I think you saw that tonight with a couple saves she pulled out. Pretty much any other goalkeeper in the league and that’s in the back of the net and we walk away with three points. So yeah, maybe a little biased. She’s pretty good.”

On Midge Purce’s game...
“I mean, Midge [Purce] caused trouble all night, but as a number nine that’s what life’s like. I’ve played that position most of my career and you get beat up every game and she just needs to bounce back. I think physically she’s fine.”

 

Notes:

  • Christine Sinclair scored her team-leading seventh goal of the season. Sinclair has scored in four consecutive matches.
  • Sinclair’s stretch of four consecutive games with a goal is tied for the second-longest streak of consecutive games with a goal in Thorns FC history.
  • With seven goals, Sinclair currently ranks third in the NWSL in goals this season.
  • Sinclair has scored seven or more goals in three consecutive seasons. Additionally, she has scored at least seven goals in five of her seven seasons in the NWSL with Thorns FC.
  • Portland is unbeaten in its last six matches against Sky Blue FC, posting a record of 3-0-3.
  • Thorns FC extended their unbeaten streak to four games (2-0-2) with the draw.
  • Since 2016, Portland is unbeaten in the month of August at Providence Park with a record of 3-0-2.
  • Hayley Raso appeared in her 60th career game for Thorns FC. She is the 10th player in club history to appear in at least 60 matches.
  • Meghan Klingenberg started her 15th match of the season. She is the only player to appear in every game for Portland this season.
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