Jeremy Ebobisse, Timbers vs. Atlanta, 8.18.19
Photo by Craig Mitchelldyer

Quotes & Notes | Portland Timbers 0, Atlanta United FC 2 | Aug. 18, 2019

Portland Timbers head coach Giovanni Savarese
General thoughts on the match…
“Disappointing result. I thought we started very well. I thought in the first half we created a lot of chances and we had opportunities. We were playing very well. I think the only thing is that we needed to be a little bit calmer. I think that goal that they scored frustrated us a little bit because we were feeling good about what we were doing and unfortunately they found a goal on a corner. If we would [have scored to] go 1-1, I think the game would have been different. Once we started the second half, they found a goal so it became tough to be able to come back into it and we tried. Credit to them. They made some good saves. We threw everything at them that we could, but they’re a good team and they found a way to be able to beat us. I thought it was an even game and I think it was just the moments that they took advantage of that made the difference in the match.”

On if he anticipated if it was going to be an open game between the two teams…
“I thought the game was going to be open from the beginning. We felt comfortable in letting the game be that way and we tried to go at them. I thought we were doing a very good job in the first half. I think their goal frustrated us a little bit and then we had that composure and calmness to be able to do some things. As I said, if we would have found that 1-1 it would have been a different story.”

On adding Renzo Zambrano into the starting lineup…
“The decision is that there are a lot of matches that we are playing. We need guys to be fresh to support those that have been playing a lot and that’s why we have been doing some rotations. Renzo has been playing very well and that’s why we made the decision.”

On not being able to put away scoring opportunities…
“I think we were very good and then once they found the goal, once you get a little bit frustrated, you get a little bit too anxious, you want things too quick and you’re not calm. I think sometimes you don’t take advantage of those moments that you can. I thought we exposed them and we found a lot of spaces. This is a team that leaves you a lot of space in the back and we took advantage of it. The only thing is we didn’t take advantage of those opportunities to be able to capitalize and then change the game. You’ve got to give credit to them because that second goal was like cold water thrown at us and then it became difficult. But we still were able to continue to make it difficult, to go at them, but unfortunately we couldn’t find the right moment to be able to capitalize.”

Portland Timbers forward Jeremy Ebobisse
On allowing an early goal in the second half…
“The second goal came so early, when we were trying to get back on the front foot and take it to them. Some missed chances from both sides, if I’m being honest, throughout the 90 minutes. We will look at the game and how it went and what we can improve on and go from there.”

On if Atlanta did something defensively to make it difficult…
“I think it was down to us honestly. They have good players in the back. They have good players all over the field. But we have played good players throughout the year. Obviously [Atlanta is] a talented team, but we have a talented offense as well. Anytime we fail to score, that’s on us.”

Portland Timbers midfielder Diego Chara
On Atlanta United FC scoring early in the second half…
“It’s unfortunate because when they scored the second goal it was more difficult. They stayed back trying to keep the ball and they made it more difficult for us. Now we have to recover and start thinking about next game.” 

On moving on from tonight’s result…
“I think we need to learn from today. I think we made a lot of mistakes. We need to be better for next game and I think we’ll be ready.”

Portland Timbers defender Jorge Villafaña
Thoughts on the game and looking forward to Friday’s game against Seattle Sounders FC…
“Disappointed about the result today; we knew it was going to be a difficult game. We had our opportunities, but we couldn’t put them away. Next game we play is going to be a very important one where there’s a good opportunity to climb on the table and it’s against Seattle. It’s going to be one of those matches that you want to play, so we’ll be eager to play.”

On what was missing today to be able to score…
“We had our chances, we were close… had a few chances that were offside and some other chances that just wouldn’t go in. I think the team fought, but unfortunately couldn’t score. So now we need to prepare and start thinking about our upcoming match.”  

Atlanta United FC Quotes
Atlanta United FC head coach Frank De Boer
On the satisfaction of tonight’s result...
“Well first of all the result of a win is always satisfying of course. That’s the most important thing, but you look also forward, how you get a win, I think we feel fully deserved to win. Of course the first half it could also be three for us, but I think the second half we have to really punish them more. We scored a really fantastic goal the second one and then we had like three, four opportunities to make it 3-0 and then is the game over. When it’s 2-0, the ball will have to bounce little bit wrong…they had one really good chance, a great save off Brad Guzan. Then it’s the crowd gets behind them and then you know we are little bit maybe afraid of that moment and then… so I think it’s a very good compliment for the team if you see what kind of effort they brought today again against a really good opponent. Especially here they are quite difficult to beat and I think how we did it and the way we did it will make me very proud.”

On trying to extend the team’s first-place advantage in the Eastern Conference...
“We have to understand why we are in the standing right now in this position. And this because… of course how we want to play but if we want to keep this going on, then we have to be mentally prepared because physically this is how we want to do and don’t get sloppy in that kind of thing and if you get sloppy, you will get punished because we take a lot of risks. But if we are in good shape, then it’s a fantastic system and we can beat everybody I think. Everybody has to be 100 percent and 100 percent concentrated. I think we are in a good fight right now. People coming back so we can also rotate sometimes when we need it. It’s nice to see the great atmosphere in the team and the results help with it and we want to keep that of course.”

On Brad Guzan’s performance...
“You know it was fantastic. That incredible save keeps you in the game or gives you the victory sometimes and from today it was a fantastic performance I think.”

Atlanta United FC midfielder Julian Gressel
On if the team is peaking at this point during the season…
“Just feels good to win. You know in general after long flights like this, long trips like this, we said it that we’ve got to reward ourselves on the road especially. We did that tonight. Good performance. And yeah, three points.”

On being accustomed to playing so many games within a short period of time…
“I mean it has been like that. You kind of just play, recover, play. It’s a good rhythm. Sometimes it helps and obviously it’s helped us the last few weeks and we got a few more to go before we get a little break and hopefully get three more wins.”

On Brad Guzan’s performance…
“Big time. I mean, with that, it becomes a game with… I don’t how many minutes were left, 20 or something. So especially with them at home, good crowd, those things are massive and that’s what we have him for and that’s where we have to rely on him at some point and he comes up big tonight and saves us in a really tight game at the end.”

Atlanta United FC goalkeeper Brad Guzan
On the team’s defensive performance in the second half…
“To be honest, I thought we were on the ropes a little bit in the second half, I thought we had some tired legs. But ultimately, the chances that we were giving them were from distance. The header. The chances we were giving them were from distance and you’d hope I save those. And so we did a good job of limiting [Brian] Fernandez in the space where he was able to operate, especially in and around the goal, so I thought we did a good job with that. But ultimately, goals change games and so the first goal, I said to Leandro [González Pirez], it doesn’t matter how it goes in it all counts the same. And then Josef [Martínez] with an absolute worldie in the second half and I think that took a little bit of wind out of their sail. And they started to get some momentum…we held on.”

On his save against Julio Cascante in the 64th minute…
“I don’t remember exactly. I know they get a cross off from our left side and he finds some space and I was just able to react. Simple. Able to react, get down to my left and keep it out.”

Notes:

  • Portland is 6-2-2 in its last 10 matches in MLS play.
  • Sebastián Blanco made his 100th career appearance for the Timbers across all competitions in the match.
  • Jeremy Ebobisse played in his 43rd consecutive match in all competitions.
  • Diego Chara led the match in passes attempted with 70 and completed 94.3 percent of those passes.
  • The match was the first loss for the Timbers in their last 16 home matches against Eastern Conference opponents.
Topics: 

2019 Timbers Single Match Tickets

Portland Timbers single match tickets are now available for all regular season matches at the NEW Providence Park. Guarantee your seats.