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Post-Match Quote Sheet: U.S. Under-20 Men 1, Germany 3


 U.S. vs. Germany
Post Match Quote Sheet
Dec. 2, 2003

Head Coach Thomas Rongen

On the match…
“We had our chances, but the 0-0 score was ideal for us at halftime, I thought. We let our guard down early in the second half as Germany was able to get back in the game with some set pieces. You have to give Germany a lot of credit. They played well in a pressure game. Clearly, the better team won today.”

On if there was anything that was encouraging to you…
“I was encouraged by the last 20 minutes by our side. We continued to go at Germany, getting back at 3-1 with Zak Whitbread’s goal and almost to 3-2 with a chance by Freddy Adu, which would have helped us by putting us at +1. Now we are sitting with 3 points with a zero goal differential, but there is still another game to play.”

On what his thoughts are now with only three points…
“Regardless of any of the outcomes, we are probably going to need points in the last match. Our tactics and demeanor will reflect that against a very good Korean team. I think this group is very evenly matched and I think we realized that this was not going to be over after our first victory against Paraguay. We knew the Korean game would end up being a important game. Our first goal coming here was to get to the second round and that is what we are concentrating on.”

On giving up three goals…
“That’s the beauty and also the cruelty of the sport. One day you’re on top and one day you are down. I knew the German was a strong team and the loss against Korea was not evident of the type of game they can play.”

On the difficulty of the group …
“All matches are difficult in World Cup competitions. Our first win has still put us in position for the second round, which I think is important. We are looking forward to the Korea match and hopefully we’ll have a game plan that will help us achieve our ultimate goal of getting to the second round.”

On Germany…
“If there is one team you can not let your guard down against it is Germany. The Germans have routinely shown that they are a great team that gets stronger as the tournament wears on. Brazil and Germany have more World Cups than any other country in the world and there’s a reason for that. It’s still a learning curve for our players to play on a high level every single game.”

On playing Freddy Adu…
“I think it was kind of an ideal time to get a young players feet wet. It’s best to be up 3-0, but I also think when you’re down by that margin there’s not as much pressure. It allowed him to come and be free and I thought he played well. It was a good start for him and I’m sure he’ll see many more minutes in the future with our Under-20 team.”

Defender Ryan Cochrane

On the loss…
“Obviously it is a disappointment, but Germany is a good team. We just have to move on from this and get ready for our next match against Korea.”

On allowing three goals…
“It’s hard to say what happened. We’ll go back and look at the tape with the coaches. It’s just disappointing that we let three goals in. We started good in the tournament and thought we’d carry that over into the game today, but that happens in soccer – it’s not always your day.”

Midfielder Justin Mapp

On the scoring chance in the first half…
“I originally tried to square it back to Magee and then it popped back out. I took a touch again to get around the keeper, but I didn’t really have an angle to shoot, so I touched it back to Eddie. By that time, the guy had picked it off.”

On the even first half…
“They have good possession, but we had some good chances in the first half. We were happy with 0-0 at halftime.”

Defender Zak Whitbread (who scored the USA’s only goal in the game)

On scoring the lone U.S. goal…
“It’s always nice to score a goal, don’t get me wrong, but I think the goal on the winning team would be a lot better. It was a good game. Both teams worked hard. I think we had some good chances to get back into it today, but it just wasn’t to be.”

Forward Eddie Johnson

On the game…
“Things didn’t go as well as the first game. We had our chances in the first game and we finished them. If we would have gotten that goal in the second half on my chance, maybe we could have changed the game. But, I was proud of our guys. It was good to get at least one goal.”

On playing South Korea…
“I don’t think our guys are too down. We’re upset, but we’ll get over it. We have an important game in a couple days and we’re looking  forward to it.”

On the play of Freddy Adu…
“A player like Freddy coming on scares defenders when he goes at them. It kind of takes their focus off of me a little bit. He changed things when he came in. He showed he can play.”

Forward Freddy Adu

On getting in to the game…
“I was disappointed we were down 3-0, but was happy to get in and show I could play. I tried to do anything I could to help the team.”

On how he thought he played…
“I think I did alright. I didn’t feel like I changed things to a point where we would be able to change the outcome of the game. I was able to get the foul that led to the goal, but we just came up short.”

On if he was nervous about playing…
“It was more exciting for me because I love playing in games like this. I’m used to playing and having fun, so I couldn’t wait to get my chance. I was excited waiting on the bench and I was really happy when coach called my number.”


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