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U.S.-El Salvador Post-Match Quote Sheet - Sept. 4, 2004

Post-Game Quote Sheet
USA vs. El Salvador
Sept. 4, 2004


U.S. Head Coach

On the overall USA performance:
“I think our passing could have been a little better, there is no question about that. But give El Salvador credit, they fought hard. Let’s face it, we knew well in advance that that was the way the game was going to look. It is difficult to break teams down that have that many players behind the ball. You’ve got to follow passes. That is all part of it. It is just about patience and composure and understanding the movement and the tactical things that need to be executed on the field to give yourself a chance and create chances. I think we did that. Was it perfect? No. But it wasn’t bad.”

“Let’s face it, they weathered a big storm. I don’t think 2-0 is a fair score, we could have scored more goals. I think we are a little guilty of that. Give El Salvador credit. They played with a lot of heart and did a decent job defensively. We missed the target too much today, as well. We had a few good looks at the goal, and we didn’t bury some of our chances.”

On the play of Bobby Convey as a left back in the game:
“We knew going into this game that our left back was really going to play as a left-sided midfielder, that is obviously a spot Bobby can play. If it is a tough game, where we are just defending for 90 minutes, that is when we are really going to tell where he is as a left back. Today we knew that it wasn’t really the kind of game where he was going to be tested a whole lot on the defensive end of the field, so I think he did pretty well going forward. He picked up a yellow card, which becomes a factor in qualifying, but I think overall he did well. He got a good ball in there for Brian to stick in the back of the net and was obviously a big part of the game.”

On pairing Ching and Casey up front in the game:
“They are good forwards and they demonstrated they should be playing. They played well for us in games this year and there is no reason why they couldn’t step on the field and play together.”

On the officiating in the game:
“You’ve seen this stuff before. I can’t comment on the officiating. It is what it is. It is a little bit easier when you can sit on the bench or watch in the stands, it is not easy for the guy in the middle of the field. I understand the issues with it sometimes, it is something we prepare for it. Decisions are sometimes going to go against you and sometimes for you. It is all part of it.”

“Look at the game for what it was. We got an early goal in the game that basically ends the game after five minutes because they weren’t going to be able to generate many chances.”

U.S. Midfielder

On the USA’s overall play:
“We were feeling frustrated out there as a team because we couldn’t open up and play the way we wanted to. What we wanted to do was play a good game for 90 minutes and get more chances than what we did.”

U.S. Forward

On his role within the team:

“I’m just trying to do my job and play my role, post up and get in the box and get on the end of things. Things have been going well right now. I’m getting on the end of balls and getting on the edge of the box and setting up a couple of opportunities. I don’t think it is beginner’s luck, because I’ve been doing it all season with the San Jose Earthquakes, so I basically try to play the same role when I get to the National Team. I play to my strengths. You don’t see me try and take on four or five guys at once. I rarely take more than one or two touches, so I just, like I said, play the ball off and get in the box.”

U.S. Forward
On how the game went for the U.S.:
“It was a little bit easier when they got the red card, but it was well played on our end. I don’t think they got any shots on goal. We did well on defense and attacking, too.”
Note: El Salvador had one shot in the game and none on goal.

On the Panama game on Wednesday:
“It will be very, very, very difficult in Panama, but we are in good shape physically, because this game was pretty easy in terms of running and we are ready.”

On the play of Claudio Reyna:

“He is fantastic. With the ball he is always very intelligent. His passes are always perfect and he reads the game well, is always moving and as a leader, he is perfect.”

On his 17th career goal with the U.S. MNT:
“I had a little bit of space there on the field and I went toward the goal,  and everyone moved and I knew I should shoot. And it was a goal.”

On the result:
“It is good. Three or four to zero is better, but 2-0 is good, too.”

El Salvador Head Coach
On the play that resulted in his ejection:
“When you are expecting a lot from the game and a young player like Alas, he is only 19-years-old, is playing very, very hard and the ref on the bench tells him to take off the chain, then no one expected him to have a red card for that. Everybody wants to win, nobody wants to lose. We were losing one to nothing, and to have one less man was very hard for me to accept that. I recognize that I made a mistake, but it was the moment. That was the way I felt during the game. That is the first time a ref has ever put me out of a game.”

On their performance against the USA:
“It was very different from the game we played against Panama. They had a lot of chances to score and they made two. That was a real great team, and they played real, real well. We tried to do our best. We are going to try and have a better game against Jamaica.”