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DC: Late Seattle goal “would have been tragic”

Post by Don Ruiz / The News Tribune on April 7, 2012 at 8:17 pm with No Comments »
April 7, 2012 8:19 pm

Here’s reaction from D.C. United after their scoreless draw with the Sounders tonight. (The final quote is my favorite.)

D.C. United Head Coach Ben Olsen
On the draw:
I don’t think offensively either team was at their best. It was a pretty physical battle. I think [Seattle] came here with the thought of getting numbers behind the ball and having a real blue-collar day. You have to be pretty good with the ball, be confident, move and be clicking, and in the first half, we really weren’t. But the fight was there, and spirit was there. In the second half, I thought we turned it up a little bit. We started moving the ball a little better, being more confident with our passing. I thought we could have snuck the win. It was one of those games where if we’re a little sharper in the final third, I think we come out of here with three [points]. They’re a good team. They’re a real team – to keep them to zero goals is definitely a credit to the back four, I thought they came in and did a good job. [Emiliano] Dudar in particular had a good day, and Robbie [Russell] and [Daniel] Woolard hung in there. That’s a positive.

On Dejan Jakovic: Dejan’s had quite a few games in this League, and we expect him to be able to come in and do the job. I thought he did a great job, in particular, on [Fredy] Montero, at times. Montero’s a real player in this League, and he is a handful. I thought we did a pretty good job on him overall.

On coming off a 4-1 win against Dallas FC into a draw: I think Seattle right now is a better team than Dallas. I will say that. I thought they were pretty charged up physically, they were ready to go. They’re coming off a loss, and I think they came in here with a real defensive mentality that they were going to make it tough for us to play – and they did that, but we still had chances. Again, if we’re a little bit cleaner – maybe we weren’t in sync as much, combining up top in the final third as we were a week before. I think right now they’re a better team than Dallas.

On Chris Pontius and the other substitutes: He brought us a little soccer, as well as some energy. Branko [Boskovic], I thought did a good job as well coming on and slowing the game down and making sure we are passing, and possession was better. I wanted to get one more in, but Robbie [Russell] came out with a little bit of an [injured] ankle. [Chris] Korb came in and did a good job. He got forward there late a couple of times. Nick DeLeon, in particular was pretty damn good again.

On losing a substitution: Obviously I wanted to throw on a forward, in particular. Maybe [Josh] Wolff for Maicon [Santos], who was obviously struggling [with muscle cramps]. It hampered us a little bit, but there’s not much you can do. You throw [Chris] Korb in, and again, I thought he did just fine.

D.C. United Defender Daniel Woolard
On the team’s defensive performance:
For the most part, we played well. We limited their chances; they had that one at the end, a couple in the first half, some long distances shots, but, for the most part, I think we did our job.

On keeping a shutout: Seattle is a great team, and to put up a shutout is nice. [The draw] is not the best outcome; of course we would’ve loved to win the game, but I think it was a good performance and a step in the right direction.

On the draw: It’s disappointing when we don’t win. That’s the goal every week, finding ways to attack and defend teams. The point is always to go out and get three points, especially at home.

On the team’s improvement: I think it’s a matter of everyone knowing their role when they are on the field. The coaching staff is really good with putting together a game plan and we are all on the same page now. We weren’t quite there the first couple of games of the season, but now we are understanding each other and playing as a team defensively and offensively. It’s all coming together.

D.C. United Goalkeeper Joe Willis
On Seattle’s last play:
We got pretty lucky. I should’ve pushed it out a little wider but it fell right to [Seattle's] player and I was lucky that the post was there to help me out.

On keeping a clean sheet: I think the back four played really well. I think [Daniel] Woolard was good with [Roger] Levesque on the long balls. I think Emiliano [Dudar] and Dejan [Jakovic] did pretty well by shutting down [Seattle's] two forwards up top. I think our back four frustrated them, and I think it showed.

On neutralizing Fredy Montero: Fredy didn’t have many looks today because Dejan [Jakovic] is a great defender; he was able to shut him down. One of the things Fredy likes to do is get the ball deep and turn with it, but we only let him do it once or twice and it didn’t come to anything.

D.C. United Midfielder Nick DeLeon
Overall thoughts on the match:
It was just one of those games where it was run-and-gun, and by the time you saw it late in the second half it was wide open because everyone was so tired from it. It was constantly going, just a different style of game.

On Seattle closing down the wings: Their outside backs were staying high on us – me and Danny [Cruz] – but that shouldn’t have anything to do with [the final result] because we are a good enough team to play through the middle. Like I said, it was one of those games where it was run-and-gun, it wasn’t possession-style. There were some tired legs out there.

On Seattle’s last chance hitting the crossbar: Thank God it didn’t go in. That would’ve been tragic.

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