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Pre Game Quote Sheet: Freddy Adu and Brad Guzan

U.S. midfielder FREDDY ADU:

On Wednesday night’s game against the Ivory Coast:
I think it was just what we needed as a team. Obviously every match is going to be tough. It’s not going to be easy and Ivory Coast has shown that they’re one of the best teams out there. They’re athletic and also very good at keeping possession and playing attacking football. It was a good learning experience for our team, going against such an athletic side and I thought that even though we didn’t feel like we played our best, and maybe didn’t attack as well as we would have liked to, we kept the shutout. We got the tie and that’s a positive for us, being able to keep the zero. What we’re going to be working on is building off that game. Obviously we still have a lot of work ahead of us.

On FIFA’s decision that Under-23 players must be released for the Olympics:
I personally think it’s great that players under 23 get released. I’m certain that most of the young players want to go to the Olympics. They want to be there. It’s a big deal. In our country it’s a big deal and players want to go, guys like Messi, Diego, they want to go. They are important to their clubs and you can understand why the clubs would want to hold them back, but I think it’s a great rule because these are Olympic dreams that players want to achieve.

On the USA’s first game of the Olympics against Japan:
I’m not as familiar yet with Japan as I will be before that game. I know our coaches have done their extensive homework and they know the team very well. They’re going to pass that knowledge on to us obviously before the game next week. I watched them play, there was actually a game on television the other day, and I saw that they’re a pretty good team. We’re in a tough group.

On his team’s chances of advancing past the group phase:
I know a lot of people aren’t giving us much of a chance to get out of the group, and we know that. But people have said that about American teams in the past and we’ve been able to prove people wrong. We are just going in with the mentality that we’re a good side who is going to be working hard and giving it our all when we hit the field. We’re focusing on what we need to do to get results. I think we have the talent, we have the group of players who can get this done. I believe in this team and I think we can surprise a lot of people in this tournament.

U.S. goalkeeper BRAD GUZAN:

On the USA’s performance on Wednesday night:
Obviously we’ve got a talented group of players and being able to hold onto the shutout in Wednesday’s game was important for us. I think with that performance we’re going to be looking obviously to build off that performance and try to clean things up a little bit. But, in saying that, I’m very confident in the guys in front of me. We defended well as a unit, which was important and it’s something we’ve been working on. I think if we continue to do that, all the other little things are going to come.

On FIFA’s decision that Under-23 players must be released for the Olympics:
The Olympics are an opportunity to be on the world stage, and it’s a huge event that everyone wants to be a part of. It’s a testament to those players who are in that tough situation because it shows how important they are to their clubs. The clubs obviously realize that these players are a big part of their team and they’re trying to do everything they can to keep them there. In saying that, players want to be a part of the Olympics and it’s a great tournament to be a part of. As players, you want to be a part of the Olympic dream.