Quotes: Claudio Bieler press conference

Transcript from Tuesday's press conference introducing Bieler

Claudio Bieler - Press Conference 3

Photo Credit: 
Jamila St. Ann

Sporting Club CEO Robb Heineman

On what made Claudio Bieler the right DP…
"I very much appreciate the commitment that Neal and Cliff and Greg and Pat and the ownership group made to make this happen. It’s not a simple thing to do in a small market, it’s a big commitment. I think we’ve been pretty clear on what our goals are, and that’s to win championships. This year was a fine year. It wasn’t a fantastic year. Winning a cup was good, but we want to win more cups. And so we felt as though we’re in a moment in this organization where a piece here or there can really make the difference. Claudio is a player we’ve had our eyes on him for a number of years.  We’ve always felt that his mentality and the way that he plays would fit this team really well, would fit the way that Peter wants to play. To paraphrase what Peter would say, it’s very simple. We want to win. This guy is going to give us an opportunity to do it. He’s got a bunch of support around him. It’s not as though this is a torch he has to carry by himself. This is a time in our organization that it’s time to go for it. And it’s a time not to just try to win an Open Cup in a year and say that’s great. It’s a time to win multiple cups in multiple years and string them together and go. Now is the time to do that."

On future moves…
"I think we’re getting pretty close to having things settled. There’s a couple players here and there that we’d like to have in the team. You start to think about our roster right now and I’m thinking about whomever this first round draft pick winds up being this year, he’s got a hell of a battle just trying to get a spot on this team. I think the guys have done a great job assembling a really great cast. Training is going to be fun to watch. I’m happy for the opportunity for both Teal and CJ to fight every day with a player of this quality side-by-side with them. I think it’s going to be a fun season to watch every day unfold. I think we’re close to being in a condition where we’re done making moves. We’re always going to be opportunistic, but I think we’re happy with where we are right now."

On how early the moves have come in the offseason…
The offseason started a lot sooner than we had hoped, so we had a little bit of extra time. This is an ongoing thing. I would say that most of the guys we have now acquired, we’ve had our eyes on for several months. To speak to Benny in particular, we tried to make a move for Benny several times throughout the season and just couldn’t ever make it happen.  These aren’t random guesses that we’re going out and making. There’s people that these guys target, that they do their research on. Then we do every thing we can to go get them. We’re to the point where these guys have created such a culture in our club that acquiring players is so much easier than it used to be. Guys want to come here, guys are willing to restructure their contracts to come here, guys want to play for Peter and Kerry. I think it’s a great setting for us right now."

Sporting Kansas City forward Claudio Bieler

On his arrival to Sporting Kansas City…
“I am very happy to be here. I believe I am here on a mission. I am fully aware that it took some organization and some commitment from the group to bring me here. I really appreciate that. I am here to bring my attacking qualities. I know the team is looking for somebody who can provide support up top and put the goals away. I am here to try to suffice that as much as possible. I look forward to a great year. I hope to win as many tournaments as possible with the team.”

On Major League Soccer…
“I’ve followed the league very closely. I’ve watched games. From my perspective, I’m very aware the league is much more physical, compared to Ecuador for example. I’m ready mentally. Obviosuly, it will take me a few trials at it to feel the pace and get the experience, but I’m available for head coach to make his decisions and have a good year.”

On his desire to play in the United States…
"There was an opportunity in 2007 when I was playing for Colo-Colo to come, but the deal didn’t really go through. For me, it is sort of a dream. Obviously, being in the international scene is important for every player but I see this as a perfect moment in my career to be here and be successful here. I hope to bring many good things to the team."

On the value of having Hispanic players around him…
"Obviously, it helps to be in that culture and feel the culture in the club, that’s always important. Regardless of having Hispanic players or not, I am here for a job and to deliver. I look forward to meeting my new partners and providing for the team."

On his international career…
"For me, I see it in a couple ways. Obviously, the primary goal for me is to be with the club and win championships at the club. Whether that leads to me being called up or not, that’s not my primary goal. In 2009, I had a call-up by Diego Maradona and that was that. For me now, my objective is to be here available for the club and win championships."

Sporting Kansas City assistant coach Kerry Zavagnin

On the acquisition of Claudio Bieler…
"Claudio Bieler is a player that has been on our radar for a number of years now. Over the course of that time, we’ve been able to track his progress in the Ecuadorian league, we’ve been able to access our resources down in that region in terms of his character, his mentality. All of those things have checked out. Most recently, we’ve been able to spend a week with Claudio and his club, Liga de Quito, for a final evaluation. At that point, we felt that he was an excellent signing for us and as of today, he will become a key member as we move towards the 2013 season."

On identifying an attacking player for 2013…
"I think we wanted to address different areas of the field. If you look at our defense last year, we were one of the best in the league if not the best in the league. To this point, we’ve already added three defenders into the team. We added a midfielder into the team. And now today, we add a striker into the team. In all lines of the field, we’ve gotten better. Clearly, Claudio’s record speaks for itself with his goal scoring abilities, which is one of his biggest strengths. Today, to add him to the group of an already athletic, powerful, young group, it’s a tremendous addition to that part of the field. Claudio, no doubt, if he does what he’s done over the course of his career, will provide goals for us."

On Claudio Bieler adjusting to Major League Soccer…
"Jeferson, different position, Brazilian. Traditionally speaking, Argentinians by nature have fared much better in our league. Their mentality is a little bit different, certainly with the ones that we’ve had in the League. Claudio possesses all of those mental qualities to be successful in our league. He’s a winner, he’s a fighter. To have accomplished the championship in Chile in 2007, to have won the Copa Libertadores, to have won the Copa Sudamericana, to be the leading goal scorer in Ecuador, you have to have some substance and you have to have a resiliency and a work ethic about you to achieve those things. While nothing is guaranteed with player acquisitions, we feel that Claudio has checked off all the boxes necessary to be a quality and important member of our team."

On where he fits on the field…
"I think our system of play in the 4-3-3 is quite known by now. Whether we have the ability to improvise a bit and play different formations, I think our group is approaching that maturity level to be able to do that. Claudio is an out and out goal scorer, he’s perfectly capable of playing in 4-3-3. He does offer different qualities than you mentioned. When you look at guys like Teal Bunbury, C.J. Sapong, it’s not like we’re going to be able to bring in players that are athletically more superior. These guys we’re talking about are world class athletes. Claudio offers a little bit different characteristics. He’s a little bit more mature in and around the box, certainly in age he is. He can help these guys come along. We’re going to need all these guys to be successful in all the competitions that we play in next year."

On the element of creativity he adds…
"We’re a team that’s based on team-first mentality. We bring in players that we feel are going to fit within the system of play that we have. Claudio, while he has creative moments, one of the biggest attributes that we recognized in him, is that he’s a guy that works for the team. As much as we talk about his goal scoring record, one of his biggest strengths is his ability to work defensively to help recover the ball. All of those pieces, when we look at a player, it’s not just the creativity and it’s not just the goal scoring, it’s the total package. Claudio, with his work ethic both on and off the field, his ability to play for the team and with the team, is probably the biggest reason why we acquired him."