SEAvSKC Quotes: "It was a total team effort"

SPORTING KC MANAGER PETER VERMES

On the match:

“We had a good mentality, especially on the road. You have to be able to grind games out sometimes and we were able to do that tonight. I would say whenever you can score three goals in an opponent’s place it’s a big thing. What I’m really happy with is even though (Seattle) scored really quickly after halftime, we didn’t lose our composure. This is a place, similar to ours, in that the crowd gets behind you quick if things are going well. Right away you could sense that the crowd was into it, they woke up and they were in it, but the guys didn’t lose their composure. There have been times here when we’ve lost our composure a little bit and we were really good today. And it was good to see Felipe (Gutierrez) play well and Erik Hurtado was really good for us in the game. For him to be able to play as many minutes as he did tonight was big time and it’s good to look down at the rest of the games that we have so we can use somebody like him as we continue to move forward.”

On responding to Seattle’s first goal:

“Going back to 3-1 was huge and then Johnny (Russell) came on and almost made it 4-1 – that was right there. I think our guys also managed the game well for most of it. I would also say our luck has turned a little bit because the shot that goes off the post and then the guy misses the header – every other game prior to this the guy would’ve scored. The fact that it didn’t  … it’s good to see that some luck has gone our way.”

On the significance of scoring that early goal:

“It’s important because when you come on the road, one of the difficulties is that you always know that the other team is going to try and drive the game. It’s their place and they’re going to try and entertain their fans. For us to be able to take the steam out of them that early was big for us and then we could drive the game a little bit. The only thing about the first half was the last five minutes we were in a really low block and we were never getting out to press the ball. Outside of that, I thought the rest of the game we were okay. I’m not happy about the two goals we gave up, but it happens. The good thing is we kept a good mentality.”

On Seattle’s pressure at the end of the game:

“This is normal in every game when you’re playing away from home -- you’re always going to find the pressure from the home team … always late in halves, especially if they’re down. We always say you have to be able to weather the storm and I think the guys did that. We got a little bit lucky, but at the same time, we also sacrificed a lot. I think at the end of the day we deserved the result.”

SPORTING KC MIDFIELDER FELIPE GUTIERREZ

On the win and his two goals:

“It is a game we needed. We wanted to win today because we needed three points. We needed a result like this. There have been a couple games we almost had it. It is a very important win today and we are really happy for that. I am really happy, too, for my two goals. Personally, it isn’t so important that I scored, but the important thing is the result. We are happy for that. We need to keep going in the same way.”

On the first goal:

“I made a diagonal, and Danny (Salloi) came back to play with the set. He made the one-two and then they found me because no one followed me. I was alone on the right side of them and I made a control and turn and I saw no one went with me and I took another touch. I saw Hurtado in the middle, but they came from behind and I shot and scored a goal. Personally, in that position I practice a lot for a shot to the second post. Luckily in my history, I have goals like this and today was lucky or part of that. I don’t know what you call it, but personally I had a good shot from that spot.”

On scoring early:

“It is always important. In our situation, we needed to score early. We made and created a lot of chances. In other games, we haven’t always scored. We were lucky today that we scored early. It was a good start for us.”

SPORTING KC DEFENDER MATT BESLER

On the win:

“It was a gusty win for us. We put in an extremely big amount of work. I thought we had an excellent first half. We can’t give up the early goal in the second half. We created three or four really good opportunities on the break in the second half. We finished one of them off, probably could have finished one or two off. Then at the end, Tim (Melia) comes up with one or two big saves when we need it. Overall, that is what you have to do when you come on the road in a difficult environment like this, it was a total team effort."

On building off this win to get into the playoff race:

“We have to face reality. There are not many games left and we need to make a run if we want to make the playoffs. This is a great first step. There are improvements that we can make, certainly, but it is something to build on. This result is going to be big for us and hopefully it is the start of a big month.”

SOUNDERS FC HEAD COACH BRIAN SCHMETZER

On the overall thoughts of the game:

“Can’t give up three goals, can’t give up three goals at home. I’ll have to look at the stats and the film again, I think we created enough chances to get more than two. But you know, it’s that old saying out there that defense wins championships, some of that is obviously true. But we cannot give up three goals at home to any team, much less an in conference opponent, much less an opponent that’s not starting one of their star players. It just can’t happen.”

On losing Western Conference games:

“For sure [they sting more]. Our conference is really super tight, it’s going to be a dog fight all the way to the end, it’s six point swings all the time, you cannot give away stuff at home. We know it’s hard to win on the road although we’ve won three. I was looking at the other teams in the league, OK, LAFC has won more, but we have to win a couple more of our road games, but we must absolutely get results at home.”

On what he was thinking after the game:

“Look man, there’s lots of different emotions that go through your head, you wonder how it could have gone differently, do your players have the right tools to be successful? Obviously, you know, you want to get in there and watch the replays of the goals you score. Your mind is kind of racing about, ‘OK, what could we have done in those moments?’ But really what it is is it’s the way that the fans know that we do care. It bothers me when the guys aren’t all together. I need us to be all together in these moments. That’s always important for me.”

SOUNDERS FC FORWARD JORDAN MORRIS

On the overall thoughts of the game:

“I think that’s the tough part, is we had Handwalla [Bwana] come in and hit the post and the one chance there at the end didn’t go in. I think our one lesson is to be better, we could have been better at the end.”

On halftime adjustments:

“I think we just needed to start with some more energy. When we are at home, I think we really need to come out and come out flying and take it to teams. Today we didn’t do that. And they took advantage of that. We need to be a little better there.”

On the reactions after the first Sporting goal:

“Yeah I think it’s a bummer when that has to be the thing that wakes you up a little bit. Like I said, we can do a little bit of a better job and we need to come out a little bit more. It’s so important with a home game to get results, so that’s something we need to take away.”

SOUNDERS FC MIDFIELDER HANDWALLA BWANA

On his instructions coming into the match:

“I mean Schmetzer knows who I am and he told me to bring the spark, bring that little entertainment that the fans are missing right now and that the game is missing and try to change the game and try to bring the team back.”

On the play that hit the post:

“It’s one-v-one, it’s what I’m good at, create that chance and hit that shot off, but unfortunately it didn’t hit the back of the net. Next time I’m going to have to work on it in practice.”

On getting back into the swing of things:

“I mean I had family issues, and took a little dink, I was trying to get back my fitness and at the same time Schmetzer wanted me to slow it down, don’t have to rush it, but sometime getting back to that home game and getting back to the team, it’s good to be back.”

SOUNDERS FC MIDFIELDER DANNY LEYVA

On his partnership with Cristian Roldan:

“I thought we did really well together, obviously the first 10 minutes we had control of the ball and the game kept increasing from there.”

On the challenges of playing Sporting KC:

“I felt like both of their first two goals came off of counters and that’s probably where we struggled the most, struggling to defend well and how they countered. How aggressive they were.”

On the message at halftime:

“Obviously, Schmetzer talked about the amount of pressure that we needed to apply and how one goal could get us back into the game. We all came out with the same mentality and pushed forward and luckily the goal came.”

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