Peter Vermes post-match press conference vs Colorado Rapids | May 18, 2022

Sporting Kansas City Manager Peter Vermes

On Daniel Salloi’s performance…

He's been playing well all season. He just hasn't had the breaks in the games and I think at times we haven't been able to find him on some of the movements he makes off the ball. He's got the ability, as he's shown tonight to do an individual solo and score on the first one. The second one was a little bit more opportunistic, but you have still got to finish it. Great two goals by him. It was important.

On bouncing back after Saturday…

That game is over with. You lost three points. Nobody wants to lose by the number of goals we did. Whether we lose by one or five or seven or whatever it is, at the end we lost three points. So for us it's trying to get three points and keep trying to get as many points as we can at home and on the road. I credit the guys for fantastic attention to the game plan tonight and the fight for them to be able to deal with all the set pieces that were called, especially in the second half. They are a very big team and right now we have a little bit of a smaller team at the moment. We’ve just got some guys that normally are in those positions to help us, but the guys competed and that's what you have got to do in those situations and we did a great job of it. They did a great job of it so a tremendous mentality in the game and a great way to close it out and still to remain under control.

On the effort from Johnny Russell…

He's a warrior. It’s one of the biggest reasons why he's the leader. He's a warrior. He was banged up from the game in Portland and so for him to be on the field tonight was a stretch. He fought all the way through to the end. So a huge credit to him and it just shows what he thinks and cares about the club and the team and just the way he fights. As I said to him, I said he's a warrior. I appreciate the way he goes out and goes about his business.

On how Russell’s message resonated with the team…

Character is defined in difficult moments and he's a guy that doesn't shy away from adverse situations. It's easy to be a captain when everything's going well. It's the difficult moments where you have got to step up and be a leader and he's done a really good job of that.

On players being out of position in the match…

I would just say that the team played very well. They fought for everything. They competed. They were organized and they played to the game plan.

On the play of Tim Melia…

He needed to come up big. That was a good save. There were a few others. But as I said, I think as a group, the group itself was committed and they fought for it. It's not easy coming off the game you played in Portland. It's not easy coming off of that and then fighting from there. But that was a good mentality tonight. It's good to see. It's something that we have got to continue to keep getting stronger and stronger with.

On seeing the team’s response…

I think you're always interested to see how your team is going to respond to all kinds of different situations. I have more belief in them than they do, but that's always the case.

Sporting Kansas City forward Daniel Salloi

On the win giving the team a sense of belief…

It helps, obviously. It always builds confidence. This is the reaction we needed to have because you can't go into the back-to-back losses and stuff like that because that's when you lose control of your team. I'm very happy what we did tonight because this is a big three points for us.

On the team’s mentality…

These are the situations that test the team and how you react. This is big. I'm not saying we made up for it, but this is how we have to react and move on.

On his brace giving him more confidence…

It builds it. It's nice to score as many goals as I can. I’m trying to do my best and help the team. Big plays like that will take us to places.

On how his first goal unfolded…

Uri (Rosell) rolled me the ball and there was just so much space that I just had to start running at him. It just kind of opened up and I could push through two guys and just place it in the corner. I'm very happy that it worked out and I got to open the scoring.

On Nikola Vujnovic drawing the foul before his first goal…

I hope he's okay. He got hurt and had to got subbed off. I hope he's doing well. We can't really afford to lose more guys.

On the play of Marinos Tzionis at center forward…

I like playing with him. He's a very intelligent player. He knows the game and I think we've been combining well. It was tough because we were kind of tired and pushed back. We have many, many games now, but we move on and I am very happy for the three points and the reaction from the team.

Sporting Kansas City defender Kortne Ford

On bouncing back with a win…

Although it's very important as a team to get over that and move on past it, we were going to let it fuel us and motivate us in this game. We talked about it all week. It was going to be a quick turnaround and we need to show grit and character, be tough in tackles and show mentality on the field. And that's what we did tonight.

On the team fighting for each other…

I think there's been a couple of performances this year where that hasn't happened and it doesn't feel good out there. Whether you're winning or losing, it doesn't feel like we're a collective or a unit. Red cards always suck but when we're battling together and we have each other's backs like that, we'll take the suspensions head on and we'll deal with it. I'd rather be a team and battle together than to not have that at all.