Diego Chara #2, Timbers @ FCD, 5.11.16

Portland Timbers Quotes

Portland Timbers head coach Caleb Porter

On the team’s strong first half and overall performance…
“I specifically think the first half may be our best half of the year, in terms of positive play, certainly on the road and playing against a really good team. We played well because we kept the ball, and we developed a rhythm and made them defend. We controlled the tempo, and we were able to dictate the game. Also, we played well because we pressed at times. For some reason, at the start of the second half, we stopped doing that and part of it was the first goal was a little flukey. It took three or four little bounces, deflected, and we’re having some of that happen this year. If you look at the first goal we gave up in our last game against Vancouver, it was very similar. It was a deflection that kind of bounced off Chara and then right into the guy’s dribble. It was the same type of play that happened this game. So, it’s not an excuse but it’s unfortunate that those things have happened. I thought that gave them life and turned the game, again similar to Vancouver. It was eerily similar, the second half in Vancouver and the second half in this game. Although, I thought our first half this game was much better than Vancouver and like I told the guys, we have an example of one half and how we played and what can happen. And, we have an example with the second half with how we played and what happened. It’s tough sometimes to be positive when you’re in a position to win games and it slips away.  We've been in a position in four road games in a row to take three points. We took two points in two games and zero points in two games, and sometimes that makes you feel worse because you’re close and you’re in that position. The good news is we’ve been in winning positions, the bad news is we haven’t been able to put the complete 90 minutes together to get three points on the road. But, we need to build on that first half and play that way moving forward and put together a complete performance. Obviously, we have a game coming up here to do that.”

On looking for the team’s first win away from home…
“We've not been in a position up four times in a row on the road since I’ve been here. In past years, we’ve played not as well and pulled off a result. So, I just think we need to get that first road win.  A lot of times, it’s that monkey on your back and you need to get that first breakthrough, that first win on the road. We’ve obviously been very good overall in our home form, but we haven’t been able to get our road form going. I think we’re getting closer, and I believe in the group. The good news is that I'm confident it’s not broken because you can see on the road, we’ve been in positions up on teams, and for me that first half gives a lot of optimism of the type of team we can be."

On his assessment of FC Dallas’ goal from a corner kick…
“Yeah, going into the game we knew he (Walker Zimmerman) was the number one target and we put one of our best markers on him obviously. Set pieces are always hard to swallow for a coach because you work on them so much and you know it’s so important. A lot of games are won and lost in those moments, and we just lost the mark. There was a little bit of pick on the play, and we have to do a better job fighting through it. But, we have to make those plays otherwise we’re going to continue to give up goals and give up points. I’m confident it will be sorted but disappointed to give up that second goal two minutes later and now we compound the first goal with us having to chase the game. We’ve been in that position before, chasing FC Dallas here, and it’s not a position you want to be in because they will open you up on the counter. The times where we’ve beaten Dallas, we’ve been up in the game and we’ve been in control just like we were in the first half. I thought it was going to be very similar to a lot of results that we’ve gotten here but unfortunately it didn't happen this time."


Portland Timbers defender Liam Ridgewell
Thoughts on the match…
“Obviously, a very good first half. I think we built off the Vancouver game, and off the Toronto game, as well. Good first half, but disappointing second half, really. We've got to learn quickly how to finish teams off and go on to win the game. We had them down and beat, but all credit to them, they came back.”

On Ryan Hollingshead's goal...
“That's football for you. It took a couple of deflections, then it got through one, got through two, got through three, and you try and react the best you can. As he shot it, it deflected off Jermaine (Taylor)'s ankle, as well and went in. That's football. Sometimes you can't do anything about those things, and you just have to take it on the chin and move on.”

On whether it was frustrating that both FC Dallas goals were scored by defenders…
“No, it was frustrating they scored two goals in the second half, and we should have won the game, really. That’s the most frustrating thing, but we have to move on quite quickly and go back and win the two home games we have coming up.”

Portland Timbers midfielder Diego Valeri
Overall thoughts on the game…
“We had an excellent start to the game. We had great possession of the ball for the majority of the first 45 minutes, and we are really satisfied with what we did during the first half. We scored really early in the game and we had another couple of opportunities that we missed that could have changed the direction of the game. They took advantage of the spaces we gave them and in five minutes they scored two goals. After that, it was more difficult for us to get possession of the ball. Our effort was not enough.”

FC Dallas Quotes


FC Dallas head coach Oscar Pareja
Overall thoughts…
“I thought this game was a must win after what happened in the last few games, so pursuing the three points today was obviously really important, and we did it. In the first 30 minutes, it was very difficult for us to get the rhythm and bring energy to the game. After they scored, our team probably went to a very deep spot, and that made it ever more incredible the way they worked after that to tie the game and win it. The second half was different. We had more energy. I thought we had more ideas in the middle. The first half we had some options. The second half we had more options, and the game just went back and forth. I thought it was a game we needed to win. We got the three points today, and the soccer is just now coming back to our team. We’ll get there.”

On lack of goal production from forwards and midfielders…
“It’s one of those moments. I said during the week, it’s one of those dry moments for forwards that happen. We need to carry on and sort it out. I have confidence in the players. I thought the number of options we had tonight just gives us hope because they are putting themselves in good spots. We’re not finding the last third, but we’re creating options and they will bounce back into it.”

FC Dallas midfielder Ryan Hollingshead
General thoughts on the match…

“We knew if we could get three points today and do it again on Saturday against Seattle, we would be right back in a good spot in the standings. Our offense has been getting chances. We were getting into the box and having chances to score – we just couldn’t find the net. Things, today, bounced a little bit to our side on those goals… My goal at least… And then Walker [Zimmerman] scored again right after. Sometimes you need one to go in so you can kind of relax. Once the monkey is off your back, you can start playing.”

FC Dallas defender Walker Zimmerman
On coming from behind to win…

“To come from behind, like we did, it shows the resiliency and character of this team. Keep fighting. Keep battling, especially after giving up such an early goal. I couldn’t be more proud of the guys. It was a great team effort tonight.”

On the physicality of the match…
“Portland is a physical team. We always get into little scrums with them. [Fanendo] Adi and I always have a lot of battles. We have a lot of respect for each other. It’s always fun to play against a guy like him. It brings out the best in you and it’s fun to play a team that wants to win that badly. They’re a proven team and last season’s champions.”


Notes:

  • Portland midfielder Diego Valeri scored his 26th goal for the Timbers, marking the eighth-most goals scored in Timbers history across all eras (since 1975) and second-most during the team’s MLS era.
  • Valeri started his 90th regular-season match for the Timbers. 
  • Forward Lucas Melano notched an assist on Valeri's goal, recording his second assist of the season.
  • Midfielder Diego Chara is the only Timbers player to play every minute in each game this season for Portland, recording 990 minutes.
  • Jake Gleeson recorded at least four saves for a third consecutive game. The last Timbers goalkeeper to record at least four saves in three consecutive matches was Donovan Ricketts, who accomplished that feat in July 2014.