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Albertin Montoya

U-17 WNT vs. France: Post-Match Quote Sheet


U.S. U-17 WNT vs. France
2012 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup – Group B
Lankaran Stadium; Lankaran, Azerbaijan
Sept. 22, 2012

U.S. head coach ALBERTIN MONTOYA
On getting a draw against a talented French team:
“Going into the first game and getting a point is not so bad playing against a very good side in France. Coming into this tournament, France and Japan were two of the best sides I’ve seen. We didn’t play as well as we would have liked, but that said, we got a point not playing well so you can only imagine that things can only get better for us if we play our game, possess it a bit better and start combining better up top.”

On the team’s debut:
“We were a bit nervous going into it, but we want to make sure we get better as the tournament goes on. We played a team that I think, if they play well, can make it to the final and we got a good result against them. They put us on our heels a little bit and made the game very difficult for us, but I thought our players did well to maintain the shutout and now we move on and continue growing. It’s not how you start – it’s how you finish.”

On how the team moves on after the draw:
“This team has a lot of heart, and we knew that going into it, but now when you put the heart with the athletic ability and the good soccer we can produce, that’s what makes us dangerous. Unfortunately, we didn’t play a great game but we can’t afford for it to happen again. Part of a World Cup is learning from your mistakes and that’s what we are going to do. We got a point, so we can’t complain. We will get together as a team, watch some film and make some adjustments. We are going to go out there and make a difference in these next two games.”

On facing Gambia next, an 11-0 loser to Korea DPR in the other Group B game:
“You approach every game the same. In football anything can happen. We have to improve. It’s not just about beating Gambia. Yes, we want to get the result, but we want to continue improving as this tournament goes on. If we don’t play better than we did today, and we still get a result, it’s not going to be good enough.”

On facing an African team he’s never seen before:
“It’s going to be challenging against Gambia because we’ve never seen them play. We’ll watch some film and see what they do, but most importantly going in that game, we have to improve.”

U.S. midfielder MORGAN ANDREWS
On getting the first match of the World Cup in the books:
“It was absolutely a battle. France is a great side. It was a good first game to have to get used to the speed of play and playing in front of these crowds. We’re going to put this game behind us now, learn from our mistakes, and it will be a good next few games for us.”

On the USA’s team defense:
“Our defense is really strong. I think we have one of the best defenses in the world. I am really proud of them as a group and proud of the team because we all defended well.”

On getting the draw against a talented attacking team:
“We’re happy to get a point. It’s better than getting nothing. But as a team, we are a little disappointed that we didn’t get the win.”

U.S. defender MADDIE BAUER
On the match:
“France is a really tough opponent. They came at us hard and they came at us fast. We were a little bit on our toes the first 20 minutes or so, just taking it all in, but I think they taught us really valuable lessons about the first game of a World Cup and how to prepare yourself. After this game, we’re calm and we see what the competition is and we know how to deal with it. We saw how one of these European teams plays and it’s really beneficial for us.”

On her center back partner Mandy Freeman going out 13 minutes into the game after sustaining an injury to her face and being replaced by Lizzy Raben:
“Mandy is my girl, but Lizzy came in really strong. We didn’t skip beat. Lizzy came in focused, communicating, and she played brilliant. I love having either of them by my side. Knowing that if Mandy goes down that we have so many great players to fill her spot helps me be really confident in the back line.”

U.S. goalkeeper JANE CAMPBELL
On the match:
“It was a good game. I think we got caught up in the moment a little bit and we were all a little anxious the first half. Once we got into the second half, we settled down and I think we played better. We can still to a lot better, but France played amazing and it was definitely a tough game.”

On the France attack:
“Their forwards were everywhere and their midfield was really composed and they connected a lot. I think they had most of the possession the whole game.”

On the USA’s defense:
“We got a shutout, so that’s definitely a plus. We got our point and we definitely didn’t want to leave Lankaran without any points. Our defense did really well and I am really proud of them, like always.”

On getting the first game of the World Cup in the books:
“Now that we got our first game under our belt, we got all the anxieties out. We played in front of an enormous crowd. Now we’ve got that over and done with, like coach said, the first game is always the hardest. Now we are going to be relaxed and ready to go.”

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