Here’s some reaction from the Earthquakes after their 2-1 win over the Sounders tonight:
Forward CHRIS WONDOLOWSKI
On personal success in Seattle): We love our fans; they’re some of the most passionate but they have great fans up here and it creates a great atmosphere. When you have a great atmosphere it helps raises my level, and makes me want to raise my level up a notch. Seattle’s a great team but I thought we did well, especially in the first half. In the second half we had more of a defensive approach, which we talked about a little bit but Seattle’s a good team.
On not having to score in the end again, playing with the lead) Definitely, it’s always nice to play with a lead. Seattle cam right back; Zakuani had a good goal. It was a good buildup and a great play across. They were pushing, especially late in the game. They had guys in the box. Our defense played really well though. I thought Victor had a great game playing balls out. Jason Hernandez was unbelievable as well so when you have two big center backs like that it’s tough for them to serve balls in and that was our game plan.
If the rest from not starting Wednesday helped) Yeah hopefully. It was one of those things where I kept working hard and goals come, and they don’t sometime. You just try to work as hard as possible, and kept working on finishing. I appreciate Ian Russell and John Busch and all the other goalkeepers staying after because I was pressing a little too hard I think and I appreciate them helping me work it out.
Midfielder SIMON DAWKINS
On his goal) It was a good assist from Alan Gordon. I decided to take the guy on and he didn’t close me down. I decided to hit it and thankfully it went in.
If he planned to take shot early) No, you’ve got 90 minutes. The chance just happened to come to me. I just took it and it went in so I’m happy about it.
On silencing the crowd) Yeah, I think it was important for us to come out here and show them that we’re at the top of the league and playing very well. We know Seattle’s a good team but we showed them we can play and we did that tonight.
Coach FRANK YALLOP
(On the game…) “Great few points for us, obviously. Big, big game. The buildup to it wasn’t the whole week, but it felt like it was, so it was a big game for both clubs, I thought. We played pretty well first half especially, and then at the end Seattle put us in a lot of pressure and it was great that we might have bent a little bit, but we didn’t break. I think that was important to see the game out.”
(On whether he saw San Jose winning all three contests against the Sounders this season…) “No. I mean, if you look at the games, they’re close. The game at our place was a 2-1 win for us, the middle game, real close; it could have gone either way. The game here was 1-nil, wasn’t it? They were close games. Tonight was a close game. We got the rob of the green, if you like, in those games, but what I’d like to say is that we didn’t deserve to lose the games and we were lucky enough to come out with the victories.”
(On forward Chris Wondolowski’s ability to score goals in Seattle…) “It’s not just Seattle. He scores goals. He had a bit of a… well, not a dip, but about seven-odd games, he hadn’t scored in general play. I rested him, put him on the field and he scores two goals. Then he scores tonight, so he’s off again. He’s at 22 now, and I expect more goals from him. I think Chris has a natural knack of scoring, whether it’s Seattle or it’s anywhere. He loves being in the right spots and he gets something on the ball, usually.”
On things San Jose is doing better than other teams in the league…) “We’re outscoring opponents. We’ve scored a lot of goals. I think that’s 62 goals. That’s a good tally for any club, so that’s important. Our work-rate and energy is fantastic. We pride ourselves on working hard, and trying to do our best to stop the opposition playing. And I think our ball movement is excellent, especially with [Rafael] Baca and Sam Cronin in the middle of the field. I think they’re excellent. They really are clean and crisp on the ball and that’s our springboard for the way we play.”
(On their weaknesses…) “I’m not going to tell you. It seems that most parts of our game are pretty good. We’re not great at anything. I just think we’re pretty good at most things. We’re good on set plays defensively, pretty dangerous. Obviously we scored today on a set play. It’s just the little parts of the game. The spirit in that dressing room is unbelievable. It goes back to when I first arrived in San Jose in ’01. It feels exactly the same, if not better, than that group, for spirit and fight and I think that that’s the reason we’re doing well.”