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Quote Sheet: U.S. MNT vs. Germany


BRUCE ARENA - U.S. head coach

On his initial impression of the match …
“I was proud of our team. I thought we played well for 90 minutes. We came out and got after the German team, which was our game plan. We were pretty confident that we could pressure them, and create some chances, and I think we did that. The difference in the game besides the goal by (Michael) Ballack  was (Oliver) Kahn. He came up with some great saves and kept them in the match in the early going, and he came up with some saves in the second half that kept us off the board. It was probably the difference in the match.”
 
On how much he thinks the team has improved over the past four years since the 1998 World Cup …
“If you look over the past four years, and think about the opening game in the 1998 World Cup, and the form the U.S. team had against Germany and where we have come to today, I think we have made a lot of progress. I'm really proud of our team and we were a little bit unlucky, because if we got a break or two, either way we may be in the semi-finals of the World Cup.”

CLAUDIO REYNA - U.S. midfielder

On the team’s performance …
“They (Germany) definitely respect us a lot more than they did four years ago. I’m not ashamed to say that we were the better team. But the better team doesn’t always win. We accept that. We have been on the other side of that as well, where perhaps we have not played the best and won – that’s how the game goes sometimes. But as far as the way we played tonight, I think we made soccer proud in our country. We can’t forget that we played a three-time champion and one of the biggest teams in the history of soccer and in the World Cup, and we really outplayed them. They’re in the semifinals and we’re going home with our heads held up high.” 

BRAD FRIEDEL - U.S. goalkeeper

On the U.S. team …
“It's been incredible. We have had a great ride. The satisfying thing is we can go home knowing that we probably could have gone a little further. It's frustrating but satisfying knowing we never once got played off the park over here. We can go home with our heads held high. “

On the team’s mood …
“We can be happy with what we achieved, but we’re going to be upset because of the loss. We had a lot of great chances and Kahn made a lot of good saves. So we’ll be upset at that, but we can walk away with our head help up high.” 

RUDI VOELLER - Germany coach

General comments on the match …
“I'm absolutely happy to reach the semi-finals. Although I'm not quite happy about the manner in which we made it. From the beginning, we didn't play as I wanted us to play. We withdrew far too much into our own half. The United States put a lot of pressure on us and we just didn't get the combination play going as I would have liked to.”

On Oliver Kahn's play …
“Oliver Kahn, undoubtedly, saved our lives in the first half many times both on the line and within his own penalty box. We knew that if we wanted to go far in this World Cup, we'd be able to do it with a fantastic Oliver Kahn."  

MICHAEL BALLACK - Germany midfielder

On scoring the winning goal …
“We knew what our strength was (set-pieces). Today, it worked and it's a great feeling. All of us gave our everything and everyone played well. In the end, we had some luck as well... We are happy to advance to the semi-final.”

On the play of the United States …
“Those guys really put pressure on us. We had trouble getting away from their tight defence. They were physically very fit and ran for the entire 90 minutes. They really deserved to be in the quarterfinals. Many people thought it was going to be an easy game, but the U.S. has showed us what they were made of and proved to be a difficult opponent.”

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