#SKCvDAL Quotes: "We’ve got to keep our heads up and keep fighting"

Sporting Kansas City Manager Peter Vermes

Thoughts on the match…

You’ve got to score. We should have been up 3-0 in the first half. We gave a stupid goal away. We never were dangerous enough in the second half. When we did get chances, we weren’t edgy and we weren’t clinical enough. It’s an opportunity lost, but we’ve got to get ready for our next game.

On the frustrations from tonight’s outcome…

I don’t know what else I can say other than if you take chances like we did and don’t score then it’s shame on us. Simple as can be. We had great chances and three golden opportunities that didn’t hit the target in the first half. The difference is they capitalized on two of their chances and we capitalized on zero.

On Dallas’ goals being scored off errors…

We gave the ball away, obviously. We made it too easy on them. The second goal, we did what we had to do in regard to blocking the first one. On the second ball we just had to clear it.

On Roger Espinoza’s return…

It’s Roger. We missed him. He won balls and plays at a different level of intensity on the field and he brings a different spirit, which the group needs. It’s great to see him get 30 minutes like he did. He’s tough mentally and obviously tough physically. To be able to come back the way he has and get back on the field as quick as he has is a testament to him because he’s a tough dude.

On how long he wanted to play Roger…

I was hoping I wouldn’t have to use him at all, or put him on the last 5-10 minutes to get his feet wet again. I needed something different in the game and I needed a different level of intensity and he for sure brought that.

On conceding the first goal…

We passed the ball to the other team. We needed to keep it to ourselves. We had players right there. It was an easy play for the other team to turn around. You’re just not going to stop it.

Sporting Kansas City midfielder Roger Espinoza

Thoughts on the match…

It was a very tough game. It’s kind of hard to put the words together after this game. I think we showed some effort at the end. I just think we need to be more clinical. We need to put in the effort for the entire 90 minutes. We’ve had good starts the past two weeks and we won the last two games. This was a crucial game for us to win, but we need to keep going. It’s not over. It’s going to hurt all this week, but let’s get back next week in New York and start winning again.

On his return to the field…

I’m very happy to be back. As an athlete, being injured sucks. You want to be out on the field to help your teammates. You want to help them fight. I’ll get a little bit more in shape and hopefully I can help the team in the long run.

Sporting Kansas City defender Matt Besler

On conceding the second goal…

Absolutely, it’s frustrating. The ball bounces their way and credit to the guy, he still has to finish it. Unfortunately, we’ve got to work through those things right now. We came up short tonight.

On the two goals allowed…

The first one, we were trying to play out of the back and we have a bad turnover. The guy makes a good pass and it’s a pretty easy finish. The second goal, the ball bounces and it falls right to the guy right at the penalty spot for another fairly easy finish for them. I don’t know how you want to characterize them, but they’re two goals that are tough to give up.

Thoughts on the team’s performance…

The way that we played, the chances we created – there’s a lot of good things. At this point in the season with where we’re at, we need results. It’s difficult to walk away from that game saying it was a good game from us. I think everybody in this room would have rather gone out and played worse and won the game. That’s what it’s about for us right now. That obviously wasn’t the case tonight. For whatever reason, there’s just something that is not clicking right now. You could go down the list and dissect certain things. I don’t think anybody has the secret answer. Whether it’s quality in front of the goal or concentration in certain moments of the game or a stronger mentality at times, you could go down the list and question certain things. But we’ve got to keep our heads up and keep fighting.

On dropping points at home after back-to-back wins…

That’s been one of the challenges this year. It’s been up and down and it’s been inconsistent. We have a good performance and we follow it up with one where we don’t get a good result. We’ve got to start building on performances and putting a run together because time is running out and the games are running out as well.

FC Dallas head coach Luchi Gonzalez

Thoughts on the match…

I thought we were fortunate in the first 20 minutes. They were pressing well. They were on us. They created some chances that we suffered through and found a way to keep it out. And then the game slowly started to even out little by little in terms of us figuring out the press and playing out of it with different ways. We had to skip more lines and that’s a credit to them and their ability to squeeze us. When we adjusted at the end of the first half, we were able to score in transition with a moment of our own press. In the second half, we knew we couldn’t just sit all game. Although they were coming at us, we had to also still stretch them and attack them and continue to find moments of pressing them, if not from a high block then from a mid.  And then we put away our chances. I thought we could have put away even a few more. The momentum went our way in terms of clear chances. Jesse made one or two very important saves that obviously I have to give credit to that kept us in the game. That’s a very good team. It went our way and I thought we earned it. We scored two dynamic goals. We are going to continue to think and feel and believe and have confidence to get points away. We’re going to prepare now to take care of business against Real Salt Lake. That’s the next step.

On earning the road result…

It’s a great environment here. It’s not easy, but the boys channel that in their energy and their motivation and their intensity and their commitment to be a tight block and not make it easy to score. As the game went on, I thought we were tighter. We actually defended better as the game went on. That’s a good note to take from this.

On scoring first…

We want to push the game. The game can have moments of us being under pressure or us having possession. We’ve had moments where we’ve had some good possession and created well, yet we concede. The game can go any which way at any moment. That’s soccer. We want to be dangerous whether we’re in a high block or a low block. We want to be dangerous and our forwards did a good job in transition to stretch them with Badji and Barrios trying to get in behind the last line and that’s important. We have to continue to do that so we don’t absorb too much, because that can catch up to you.

On the playoff race…

It’s one game of many. There are a lot of points to play for. Every team has a mathematical chance. It’s one game. We’re going to enjoy what we did well, but we have got to know that we can do better. There was still a lot of things that can be better. That’s the mentality right now to develop and improve so we can have a better performance and take the next step against Salt Lake.

FC Dallas goalkeeper Jesse Gonzalez

Thoughts on the match…

I think the whole team did a great job. From the first minute, we struggled a little bit but towards the end, we got the hang of the game. You’ve got to give credit to the coaching staff and all of the players.

On the clean sheet…

It feel greats. It’s not every game that you get a clean sheet. It feels great to be back on that rhythm. I hope there’s more to come in the future.

On the victory…

It just motivates us even more knowing that we can come to a tough environment and take three points. Right now, the whole team feels great but we can’t relax. We’ve got to keep working.

FC Dallas forward Jesus Ferreira

Thoughts on the match…

We needed to come here and get the three points no matter what. I think, in the back of our head, that was a must (win) three points because we need to get higher in the table so we can keep going up in the playoff positions. We kept that in the back of our mind and we got the three points.

On filling in for Paxton Pomykal…

I think what the coaches needed was someone to play that position. He chose me to play that position. I think I just had to execute it the best way that I can and help the team.

On his goal…

I’m happy to score again. It’s been a while since I was on the scoresheet. I’m happy that both of us are competing and both of us are challenging each other. We just have to keep scoring.

On the team’s attitude moving forward…

We have to keep in mind that the playoffs are around the corner. We have to keep adding points. Everywhere we go, we have to get the three points no matter what.

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