#SKCvCOL Quotes: "We had our fans behind us, it’s nice to play at home again"

Sporting Kansas City Manager Peter Vermes

On the victory…

Three points any time is great. Getting them at home is fantastic and now we go play out of conference against a very, very good team. We’ll be on short rest but we’ll try to make it happen.

On playing Colorado twice in the team’s first 10 games…

We have got to play a lot of games. We have to play them sometime. We won’t see each other for a while but that’s fine as well.

On the team’s home form, going 4-1-1…

I don’t know too many who wouldn’t take that record in the league, let alone just home, I also think that we’ve done fairly well so far on the road too. I think that we’re evolving, and I also think that we’re getting challenged early on in the season with different tactical packages that teams are putting together and it’s good because it’s making us see things that, as a season progresses, we’ll be even more ready for. You create the kind of chances we did tonight, you’re not going to leave many games like that winning 1-0, it’ll probably be two, three, four, because I believe we have the ability to do that.

Sporting Kansas City goalkeeper Tim Melia

On the team’s performance…

I think the most important thing was the reaction of the team coming off the New England result last week. We went into a difficult place and we didn’t get the result we wanted. But we came home and we grinded a result out. It wasn’t always the prettiest game but we got the all important three points and now we move on to Atlanta.

On what made the difference…

I think the effort was there tonight. We were really good defensively. We were closing the ball down, winning aerial battles, and then we got a great finish from Daniel. Johnny had a few chances. Khiry had a few chances. I think it could have been a different scoreline. But three points in the bag and we move on.

On a second straight shutout at home…

I think any game at home is so important. The fans come out for us every game. They always create an excellent environment. For us to be able to reward them with a victory is the most important thing.

Sporting Kansas City midfielder Roger Espinoza

Thoughts on the match…

We knew it was going to be a tough game and that it wasn’t going to be easy. Colorado is a very hard-working team. We knew if we worked together as a team and kept the ball well, that we were going to come out victorious.

On the game-winning goal…

It was good. We talked about getting in the box and following through. Khiry made a good run. Ike crossed it. Daniel was right there to finish. We had numbers and I think that was one of the main reasons why we scored right there.

On protecting the team’s 1-0 lead…

We knew we had to create opportunities. We could’ve scored a couple more goals. We knew we had to come out with the intensity. That’s what we did. It was 1-0 but I think we deserved the win.

Sporting Kansas City forward Daniel Salloi

On his goal…

Besler played a good ball back to Ike and he was very smart to pass it with his head to Khiry. Khiry is probably the unluckiest forward ever to have his header hit the post then bounce back into his shin and back into the post, but I’m happy that it bounced in front of me. I’ve got to be there when something bounces out. I’m happy I could finish it. Other than that, I’m super pissed. I could have scored four other goals probably or more. It was one of those days. I’m happy that I could score and that we won the game.

On the team’s home support…

We had our fans behind us. It’s nice to play at home again. I think we created a lot of chances. It was one of those days when you miss them. We are a good team. Good teams win. If you have a bad day of finishing chances and still win the game, that’s huge. This was a very important three points. It’s going to be a very tough one on Wednesday so we’ve got to prepare for that one.

On the team’s attitude going to Atlanta…

We have confidence. We are top of our conference. That’s how we have to go there. We have to be very focused and concentrated because they are one of the toughest places to play. We have to work together and that’s going to help us get a point or more on the road.

Colorado Rapids head coach Anthony Hudson

On the positives to takeaway…

I think, overall, I’m proud of the team and I’m proud of the effort. I’m proud of the performance. I think, overall, it’s the best team in the league and we went toe to toe with them. First half, we looked comfortable out of possession. In possession, they put us under a lot of pressure. But I thought as the game wore on, we played some good football. We had some chances. I’m disappointed in the result but overall incredibly proud of the performance.

On the play of Sam Nicholson…

I thought he did very well considering he’s only been with us for a couple of days. To be thrown in there against the best team and some of the best players. The guy he was marking is an experienced player and a tough player. I thought he kept him quiet. I thought he put in a really, really good performance. He stepped up tonight. (Sporting) has really hurt teams in this league. I thought, tonight, we really matched them for large parts of the game and we gave a good account of ourselves. It’s just unfortunate we don’t come away (with anything). I think tonight we had some chances in there where we should have come away with at least a point in this game.

On if the goal Colorado conceded was unlucky…

No. I think we have to hold our hands up there. We didn’t deal with it well enough. It was a set piece, second phase, we haven’t dealt with that well enough. That’s something we’re not happy with. Irrespective of what happens at the end with a little bit of luck, I think we should have dealt with it in the first place. Other than that in the first half, the players they were very, very disciplined and very organized. As the game wore on, with the ball I think we caused them problems. It’s disappointing because I would say probably since Salt Lake when we went down to 10 men,  we’ve just had a coupe of knocks over the last couple of games. On the back of the last game, I’m pleased with the performance tonight.

On the away supporters…

It was great. I was really surprised to see how many fans were here. It was great. Everyone on the bench commented. It’s unbelievable. That means a lot to us. We went up at the end and sort of gave them a bit of recognition. It’s hard because we want to give them a bit more than that. They probably have a long drive or a flight. It’s hard because we wanted to give them some points tonight. I hope they see that we’re doing the right things. The players are working the right way. The commitment and the way we’re trying to approach the games – I hope they see that. We are still building. We’ve just gone up against a team that have been building this team for a long, long time. We’re right at the start. This is early stages of us building our new team. We have many things and changes and people that need to happen. We’re moving in the right direction. I know the results haven’t been good. But off the back of tonight, I’m proud of the players.

Colorado Rapids forward Dom Badji

On coming up short…

That’s the way the game goes sometimes. I had a couple half chances. I had one great chance that I should have put away. Goals change games and that would have definitely changed the game for us. We had the momentum going our way. It’s a game of inches. If I put that two more inches to the left, it’s a goal and that changes the game completely.

On the debut of Sam Nicholson…

Sam’s a good player. He’s a solid player, a technical player. Once he gets used to the system, he’s going to be somebody that contributes a lot to us.

On conceding the decisive goal….

Yeah. Off the post, off somebody, knocked off a couple of people, and eventually fell to one of their players. That’s just the game sometimes. It’s not pretty. Goals come from scrappy plays like that sometimes. It’s something that we need to learn from. I think we could have stopped that from happening on a couple occasions before it landed to one of their players in the box. That’s something we should watch, figure out how to stop and make sure it doesn’t happen again.

On the away supporters…

It was awesome. It’s always nice to have Rapids fans out there. We hear them. We appreciate their support. And we’re looking forward to getting some wins for them.

Colorado Rapids midfielder Sam Nicholson

On his debut…

Despite the result, I thought the team played really well. I thought we deserved something out of the game. I was thrown in but I was more than happy with that. It would have been really nice to get something out of the game. I thought we did deserve more.

On the game’s only goal…

You look at the game’s chances. They didn’t really outshine us with having more chances than us from what I can remember anyways. I thought we played well enough to get something. Them getting a lucky goal, I suppose it’s a bit unfair. It would have been nice to get something. That’s soccer. We’ll look forward to the next game.

On his arrival to the club…

The guys were really welcoming. The coaching staff and the players have been really welcoming to me since I’ve come. It was relatively easy to go into the game.  I appreciate everything since I’ve joined.

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