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U.S. Women's National Team Post-Game Quotes vs. China

U.S. head coach GREG RYAN:
On the match:
“I was very happy with my team today. They played with tremendous energy and a desire to attack. In the first half, I thought we played very well. In the second half, I thought China played very well. When we weren’t able to continue to pressure China, you could see they knew how to play and create chances and get good scoring chances behind our defense. I want to congratulate China on a very good performance.”

On getting scoring from numerous players:
“I’m happy with the start that we’ve made and in the goal scoring from Heather O’Reilly in the game against England, Natasha Kai today, and also scoring from distance from Lori Chalupny. Those are very important for us because we need more players that can scores goals in addition to the two players that weren’t here, Abby Wambach and Kristine Lilly. I am very, very happy with the way the younger players responded throughout the team.”

On the tournament:
“I wasn’t really disappointed in this group at all during this tournament. Even though we got draws in the first couple of games, I was happy with the team, because this is a process we’re going through to help young players mature. We talked with the team and told them that we just wanted to continue to learn and grow throughout the tournament.”

On the tactics against China:
“Today, we felt we could really come out and just go after China, pressure them in their half and go forward and create chances. It’s great for us to end the tournament on this note. They take a lot of confidence away from this, but even in the games that don’t go your way, this is a very important process.”

On changing to a 3-4-3 formation for the China match:
“Things went really well. Sometimes you do something unexpected and the other team is not prepared and I think China was surprised by the way we approached the game. But I think we also found that against certain teams, that it will suit us more to play in a different system. That’s not something we experimented with prior to this, but we felt pretty confident that it would work against China. When we only play three in the midfield and they get five around the ball in the middle of the park, it makes it difficult for us. Today, I thought playing a 3-4-3 we pressured them very well, created plenty of chances to win the game and the team had a lot of fun out there.”

On the progress of the young players in the tournament:
“I’m happy with what we did. I still think our young players are in the process of maturing. This is a process that will go on between now and the World Cup and we have to take them as far as we can. To see Heather (O’Reilly) score, and Tash (Natasha Kai) score and Chalups (Lori Chalupny) score from outside the box, that’s another step in the process and in them growing as players. We’re happy with the progress we made during this tournament, but we still have a long way to go.”

On Chalupny’s goal:
“Great goal. We have to get scoring from our midfield and they have to put shots on the frame from outside the box. We did that today and not only Chalups, but Carli hit some great shots today.”

U.S. midfielder LORI CHALUPNY
On the match:
“It was a lot of fun. The whole team was just commentating on how much fun we had today. We really just got after it. Personally, I love playing midfield and I love getting forward and I feel really comfortable up there attacking, so it was fun for me.”

On the young players performing:
“We had a great time this tournament and I think this was a really good chance to get a lot of game time and show what we can do. All the young players that came stepped up, and they all really showed their qualities that make them special.”

On her goal:
“It felt good right when it came off my foot. I got a good touch on it right around the defender and just saw a seam to take a shot. I just tried to hit it hard and on frame. When it hits the back of the net, it’s just such a rush.”

On the young players:

“We started (this tournament) with three players who never had a cap before and they were able get their first cap while they were here. They were able to step on the international scene and make a difference, and I think that’s’ a testament to how strong our youth programs are. It was just great because you knew whoever we put on the field was going to do a great job.”

On the tournament:
“We are really happy with the outcome. We wish we could have won and played a little bit better in our first two games, but we are happy that we got better as the game progressed today and were able to beat a great team like China.”

On playing sweeper in the 3-4-3:
“We played a 3-4-3 with a sweeper and two man-markers. There aren’t a lot of teams that have to face man-marking, especially two great forwards. We threw them off their game a little bit, which I think took them at least the first half to recover from. If we were going to have trouble possessing the ball at times, which we’ve had this tournament, we might as well high-pressure the team and make them give the ball back in their half. That’s what we did and it was very successful today.”

U.S. midfielder CARLI LLOYD
On the match:
“I liked the 3-4-3. I thought it was great having wide midfielders to slip balls to and it helped relieve the pressure of us going down the middle. I thought Leslie and I worked well together. She dropped when I went up and I dropped when she attacked. Overall, I just thought it was exciting to come out in a different formation and really press and attack them.”

On the tournament:
“I though this tournament was a big stepping stone for the young players. We have some great young players and the more experience they get, the more depth we’ll have on this team and that’s important to have in a Women’s World Cup year.”

U.S. goalkeeper HOPE SOLO
On the team defense:

“I enjoyed the three-back formation because we had so much more pressure in the midfield to close down their outside shots and counter attacks. It was a bit of a struggle for me to organize defensively because I haven’t seen a three-back in so long, but the individual efforts by everyone to pressure the Chinese defensively was superior.”

On the end of the match:
“When we switched to a 4-5-1, we played a bit more defense, but still I felt we had the game under control. It was a great effort for a young team to play a new formation. The focus was there for the entire 90 minutes.”