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Post-Match Quotes: U.S. U-17 MNT 0, Netherlands 2


U.S. Head Coach John Hackworth
On how Kevin Alston’s injury affected the match:
“It certainly had a big impact because you have to make a sub so early in the game. We had to move our left midfielder to right back, which is a big change. I think we did our best to compensate for the loss of Kevin.”

On if he’s happy with their fifth place finish:
“This is heart-breaking. We thought we could come here and advance to the finals or at least the semifinals and that was our objective all along. We’ve trained tremendously hard and put in a lot of work. Our goal was to come in and compete for a world championship. I think we did that, but, no, we’re not satisfied.”

On giving up the first goal just before the first half:
“That’s an awfully hard goal to give up in injury time of the first half. I thought we had the better of the play early in the first half and then we lost a little of our edge. You can’t go into halftime right before the whistle with something like that. It definitely turned the tide. We had to play differently in the second half. To our credit, I think we did what we needed to do, but we were unlucky not to get a goal.”

On the second half:
“I told the team at halftime there were a couple of things we had to do that would change things. We needed to come out and we needed to put pressure on the ball. I really felt we could come out and attack the flanks. We did that as Quavas (Kirk) and Jeremy (Hall) were able to get around the corners and get in some excellent serves. We were unlucky.”

On Holland:
“To Holland’s credit, they are a very good team. I congratulate them on a fantastic win. They did what they had to do and they didn’t let us score. We couldn’t buy one today.”

U.S. Captain Ofori Sarkodie
On the first goal:
“When the first goal went in we just had to gather our thoughts, regroup and go over the things we went over before the game. We knew we had to come out of the second half with high intensity and took it to them. We knew we had to get a goal as early as possible in the second half to change momentum in the game.”

On dealing with the counter-attacks in the second half:
“We knew we were going to go forward and Holland was going to come at us. We just needed to have exceptional defending. We were expecting it.”

On how they played:
“I feel like we definitely outplayed Holland at times, but just couldn’t find a goal. But a tribute to them. I wish them luck.”

U.S. Forward David Arvizu
On what he’ll remember most about the tournament:
“The group of guys we were with and everyone playing their hearts out. Just every game. It will be something I’ll remember for ever.”

On the match:
“Today wasn’t our day. I felt like we dominated most of the game, but the goals just didn’t come. That’s all we needed to do was finish our chances.”

On the positives from the tournament:
“I think the people all over the world have seen that the U.S. has come a long way. We beat some good teams and hopefully they will respect us a bit more than what they used to.”

On looking forward to the Under-20 level:
“We’re just going to have to continue working hard, keep our heads up and forget about all of this. We just need to learn from the result here.”

U.S. Goalkeeper Bryant Rueckner
On the match:
“As a team, I thought we played really good. We had some chances that we just didn’t finish. The whole defense did what they needed to do, but they got the goals they needed. We just couldn’t get ours.”

On the first goal:
“The guy was dribbling down the left side of the field and he had either the option of shooting or passing it across. I was waiting for the shot and then he passed it across, so I had to get across (the goal). It looked like the guy just mis-touched it and it kind of chipped over. I dove across and he got the goal on the chip.”

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