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Quote Sheet: U.S. WNT Defeats Norway 3-1 as Lilly Earns 300th Cap


U.S. HEAD COACH GREG RYAN
On the match:
“I was very happy with my team’s performance. I felt like we had a passion to attack and also our defense was strong. We were able to keep pressure on the Norwegian team, which was our goal today, as well as try to create as many opportunities as we could to score goals. Norway is a very, very strong team. They created some great chances to score goals as well. In the first half, they hit the crossbar and in the second half they had a header that went over the net, but for our first game of 2006, I am very happy with the team. It was a very good day for us.”

On Kristine Lilly:
“Kristine Lilly’s performance in her 300th game was tremendous, with a goal and a beautiful assist on the corner kick. She is still such a special player and the most special thing about Kristine is that every game she comes to play with her whole heart. She gives us everything, now for the 300th time.”

On Lilly’s role when she plays on the front line:
“She has a very important role for our team. On our front line, she is the creator. She creates chances for other players by going one-on-one and serving good balls, but also she can score goals as you could see by the great free kick. On our front line we have some strong, fast players, like Abby Wambach, Christie Welsh and Heather O’Reilly, so we look for Kristine to create the play.”

On the young U.S. defense:
“It gave the young players a chance to play in a big game. Obviously, they are very, very young, but the progress they have made in a short time here in China is fantastic. They were very solid and I was very happy with all of them.”

NORWAY HEAD COACH BJARNE BERNTSEN
On the match:
“It was a very well fought game by both teams, but USA has a lot of very good players. I want to congratulate Kristine Lilly on her performance. It was a tremendous goal. I think today the United States was the better team.”

U.S. CAPTAIN KRISTINE LILLY
On the match:
“In a game like today, our main objective is to play our best soccer and win. We won, which was great in itself as Norway has always been one of the best teams I’ve played in my career, but to win and play so well in my 300th game, makes me feel even better.”

On her longevity:
“I still have the passion, I still love the game, I love the feeling of being out there, I love being part of the team, and I love winning. That’s what keeps me coming back.”

U.S. FORWARD ABBY WAMBACH
On the match:
“A huge win. It was very fitting that Lil scores the first goal of the game and the first goal of the year. It’s a start of a journey for us to the 2007 World Cup and whenever you can beat Norway, no matter what the score, no matter where it was, you have to pat yourself on the back.”

U.S. MIDFIELDER LINDSAY TARPLEY
On Lilly:
“It was a great game, and as always, Lil came to play and made a difference. She’s like that every game and she’s an inspiration to all of us.”

On the match:
“We felt comfortable and confident and we can only get better from here. It’s exciting to start a year playing this well and feel that great about a performance. We did a lot of things well. We were very compact and organized and from that, our attack was built. We did a great job getting numbers forward.”
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