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World Cup Quote Sheet: Klinsmann, Bedoya, Dempsey, Gonzalez, Howard & Jones


The USA Advanced to the Round of 16 at the 2014 FIFA World Cup on Thursday. Head Coach Jurgen Klinsmann and Players Alejandro Bedoya, Clint Dempsey, Omar Gonzalez, Tim Howard and Jermaine Jones Spoke to the Media After the Team's 1-0 Loss to Germany in its Group G Finale.

U.S. MNT head coach JURGEN KLINSMANN
On advancing from the Group of Death:
JK: “It’s huge. We wanted a tie out of this game, but maybe in the beginning we had a bit too much respect [for Germany]. Then, more and more, we got into the game. We should have created a bit more chances. That’s really something we have to improve on, but overall, tremendous energy, tremendous effort from the whole side. It’s huge for us getting out of this group that everybody said, ‘You have no chance.’ We took that chance and now we move on. We really want to prove a point.”

On Germany having an extra day to rest and the USA playing its previous match in Manaus:
JK: “It’s difficult to say. I don’t want to put too much into it. The energy was great, the commitment was great – we should have had a little bit more possession I wish and creating more chances, but maybe we kept that for the next game.”

On the purpose of changes to the starting lineup:
JK: “We needed a bit of freshness there. That’s why Brad Davis came in for Alejandro Bedoya and Omar Gonzalez from the beginning on. We go now three of four days rhythm. We need all 23 in our squad to get through the tournament. This is a huge, huge step and now we can’t wait for the round of 16.”

On what Tim Howard means to the team:
JK: “Timmy is one of our big shots. He’s our leader, he keeps everybody together. We need him right now. In a World Cup, if you want to go far, you need one of the best goalkeepers in the world, and we have that one.”

On what he will tell the team about its performance today:
JK: “We still can do better. We got through the group, but we have to do better in the Round of 16 and we will do better.”

U.S. MNT midfielder ALEJANDRO BEDOYA
On his second-half collision with Jermaine Jones:
AB: “It was just a weird collision. I had the ball and knew what I wanted to do next, but I didn’t really see him actually and we just collided. I guess it looks pretty bad on TV. I’m doing alright. I guess my head hit his nose so I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s broke.”

On having the crowd salute the players after the game:
AB: “The fans were great support down here in Brazil. Some of these games we feel like we played back in the States. The American Outlaws and then seeing the red, white and blue in the stands was awesome. You got to applaud them for coming all the way to Brazil, supporting us. [The game against Germany was] a loss, but I think last game felt like more of a loss than this one but obviously we accomplished the goal that we wanted to do – that was get out of the group and now we’re looking forward.

On the USA becoming the second favorite team of other country’s fans:
AB: “That’s awesome, the more support, the better it helps us get motivated for the games. That’s great to hear. We’re here, we all helped each other and we all know we have 23 players that can get the job done.”

On the weather conditions for the match in Recife:
AB: “I don’t think the conditions had that great of an impact. Both teams had to deal with it. If anything the rain helps you move the ball a little bit quicker and that what we want to do well in terms of moving the ball at a high tempo. Those are things we have to work on. Germany is a great team with great players, but we advanced; that’s the most important thing.”

On Belgium likely being the USA’s next opponent:
AB: “I can’t really give you anything on that because we haven’t had the chance to sit down and take a look at them. I’m sure we’ll sit down in the next couple days, look at their video and attack them. We need to be better moving the ball and possessing it, playing at a higher tempo. Belgium is a great team as well with great young players so, we have to be careful there as well.”

U.S. MNT goalkeeper TIM HOWARD
On getting out of the Group of Death:
TH: “Proud of our group; we have a lot left in us. Today was a tough game in tough conditions. Hats off to Germany, I think they have an opportunity to win the World Cup, that’s how good I think they are. We had a chance right there at the end, but we go again, we get to the Round of 16. It shows how far we’ve come. That we’re not happy just getting there, that we want to progress , and we still got a little bit left in us.”

On the physical and mental after effects of the game in Manaus:
TH: “We got over that pretty quickly. We had a great opportunity. We controlled our own destiny to a certain extent and that’s where you want to do going into the last game. There were no heads down. We were excited. We had a great couple days of training. A lot of laughs, some good travel and some good weather.”

On what the team has to do to improve in the knockout stage:
TH: “We are going to try and get as much rest as we can. Everybody comes in to this last game tired. Germany is a tough team. They were going to make it difficult on us. Not only to they defend well, they use the ball well so they don’t give you many opportunities. Offensively, I thought we’ve been good in this tournament so that will continue.”   

On Jozy Altidore’s injury and how the team has adapted:
TH: “Any time you lose a big player, it stings a little bit, but the top teams and the top players move on. You realize that injured guys can’t help the team and you use what’s in reserve and you go again.” 

On what it means for the USA to advance to the knockout round in a second consecutive World Cup:
TH: “I think whether we’re in the Group of Death or not, what’s come to be expected of the U.S. is that we get out of the first round and hopefully make some noise. We’re going to try and do that, but I thought we’ve done well over the last two weeks.”

On the pressure he faced from Germany’s offense:
TH: “We had one eye or one ear on the other result, but it was important that we try to get a goal to keep the balance right. We didn’t get there, but I thought defensively we were solid throughout. Germany’s a top team. Obviously, we were in a tough group together, but I think they have every chance to get themselves to the final that’s how good I think they are. It was tough on us today. Weather was crappy but it was crappy for both teams. For the most part, the game was pretty fair.”

On USA defender Omar Gonzalez starting his first World Cup game:
TH: “He got thrown into the firing line, but he did well, had some good clearances, read the game well. It was just about managing it. Between him and Matty [Besler] trying to manage the back line and the guys in front of them and really not allow Germany to open up and get in a flow – they did a few time – overall, I think it was good.”

On if the scrutiny of the back line could now become history:
TH: “it’s funny, we talked about it all before the World Cup and it’s been the same – we’ve had to use all four center backs. That’s just the way we’re going to roll; it seems to work for us.”

On his initial save and subsequent goal by Thomas Muller:
TH: “I think [Per] Mertesacker headed it down to the back post. As I dove I just saw red and black shirts and with the conditions I just needed to get it out of the danger area; did that well. But, credit to Muller, keeping that shot hard and low first-time is very, very difficult. He’s done it before but that’s the type of player he is. I just tried to get back to my feet and the guys in front of me tried to get blocks in. I thought I read it well, but it was a great finish.”

On hearing about the result from the other game:
TH: “We were always hoping for Portugal to step up and win the game but not by too many. We were happy when we heard the result and were just hoping [Ronaldo] wouldn’t go too crazy, score to many goals. That’s what I was thinking at least.”

On how the team, results and tournament are different than four years ago:
TH: “I think we’re playing better. I see it from the back, our ability to open teams up, to possess the ball, to get at teams has been a big difference. Germany aside – this was a tough game, they had a lot of possession and were always going to have a lot of possession – I thought our passing movements have been good, I thought we’ve created chances, whether it’s been one or two today or a host of chances in other games. I really do think this team is better equipped to possess the ball and press teams.”

On appreciating the tournament in a different way than in 2010:
TH: “Between now and four years ago, I’ve played a couple hundred games for my club and country, so I’m just more experienced, don’t really get too high or too low. I think when you have a big tournament, the important thing is managing emotion.”

On the play of Jermaine Jones:
TH: “He’s a player with a big character, with a big ego and those kinds of players often times don’t want to do things for the team, and I think he’s done brilliant in terms of playing on the left wing, which isn’t anything that’s natural for him, he’s doing a great job tracking back. There were times today where I was scratching my head when he was playing like a center forward, but it was working, Clint was pulling out, getting more of the ball and it was just working. He’s one of the tough guys. He gets in there and he grinds and he’s been fantastic for us.”

On the foreign-born players commitment to the country:
TH: “Everyone is really, really committed, they bleed for the shirt, it means something to them. In just casual conversations that are private that I’ve had with guys, you can sense, you can just tell emotionally they’re attached to the U.S.”

On if he has heard from former U.S. MNT goalkeeper Kasey Keller about breaking his all-time caps record:
TH: “Milestones like that are important and obviously Kasey is dear to me in being a friend and a goalkeeping mentor. I never thought I would get that close let alone break his record, so it’s a proud day.”

On playing Belgium which has three players who are teammates of Howards at club level:
TH: “They’re a top team. Everyone around Europe will tell you how good they are. They’ve got so many good players, young, fast, good on the ball. I actually think because of that we match up well with them.”

On how the tournament changes for the team now:
TH: “Today’s a weird one, because you know in the back of your head a draw is good enough, whereas that doesn’t happen anymore. So there was a part of managing the game [today]. There is not managing the next game; it’s just win, so we push ourselves even further than we did today. No there are no ties.”

U.S. MNT midfielder JERMAINE JONES
On his collision with Alejandro Bedoya:
JJ: “I don’t remember very good what happened, if we come head on head or head-on-shoulder. The feeling was I think it’s broken. We’ll have to see when we come back to Sao Paulo what is with my nose. If I try to breathe now, I have no chance to breath. I feel that it’s broken, but we have to wait for what the doctor says.”

On the approach to the scenario and not paying attention to Portugal and Ghana:
JJ: “The whole game we didn’t look what Portugal did. We tried to make the best and we wanted to show a good game. It was a difficult game, Germany is a good team. The first 20 minutes, I think we had too much respect for Germany but then we showed a good game.”

On battling Germany:
JJ: “In that game, I think you have to go that battle one against one. In the first 20 minutes, you can see that we didn’t go into battles, we gave them space. So it was difficult and Germany was for 20 minutes the better team. When we came in the battle, we stepped sometimes on their toes so they didn’t feel so comfortable.”

On advancing to the knockout round:
JJ: “Before this tournament started, no one was talking that America can come to the next round. It was always Portugal and Germany. We showed people that we have a good team and we have a good atmosphere in the group. Everything that the coach did before the tournament, who he sent home and who he took for the team, I think was a good decision. The team showed heart and gave good feedback. Now for the next game, it’s the same tough game like Germany. They have a lot of experienced players, good players from different good clubs. It’s a knockout game and we have to see it like final.”

U.S. MNT defender OMAR GONZALEZ
On starting in the World Cup for the first time:
OG: “When they told me that I was going to start, I always told myself that I needed to be ready for whatever happens and here we are in the third game and my name is getting called, so I was obviously very nervous but once the whistle blew I was ready to go. I thought today we had a pretty good game.”

On being aggressive with Germany:
OG: “We wanted to keep it going, we wanted to get more aggressive with their guys. I think we were allowing them too much space and allowing them too much of the ball. We wanted to get around them quicker and be a bit more aggressive in winning the ball back.”

On missing a clearance early in the game and moving on:
OG: “Those things happen. No one has a perfect game. It’s what you do after you do have a little hiccup. That was a little scare but you move on and you look towards the next play and that’s exactly what I did. I looked to keep on making little plays.”

On his health and getting an opportunity:
OG: “I’ve been healthy now for a while. When I stepped back on the field I felt like I was ready to go. It’s just that I think my injury let Cameron in and Jurgen was showing a lot of confidence in Cameron. Things change. Now, since I got my opportunity, I definitely wanted to make the most of it.”

On the preparations for Germany:
OG: “We were very prepared. Out coaching staff did a great job of putting together some video for us and we knew exactly what to expect from their three up top. There’s a lot of interchanging that goes on there. They make a lot of good runs but I think we were very prepared for it.”

On the physical play against Germany:
OG: “These games aren’t taking very lightly. We want to win. Sometimes anything goes in order for you to get to that ball first. There’s obviously arms flying, tackles flying; that’s the way this game is played.”

On the reaction knowing the U.S. was through to the knockout round:
OG: “I was just assuming that we were already through. We knew that if we lost more than 1-0 it could start to get a little bit sketchy there. I thought we did our job and when they said we were through, the emotions that were running through me, I was just really happy. I went to go hug my teammates and congratulate the crowd.”

On the mentality in a 1-0 deficit:
OG: “After Muller scored, we obviously wanted to tie the game up but we also didn’t want to give up any more goals. Me and Matt just said to each other that it’s our job to just lock this game up, let no more goals happen and no one gets behind us. We just shored things up and we kept it 1-0.”

On the emotions of playing on the biggest stage:
OG: “It’s something that you just want to manage the moment. In this moment, playing against Germany, playing a game to see if you’re going to advance or not; this is the type of game that I’ve always dreamed of being in. There’s not much thinking into that. Once the whistle blows, it’s business time and all the other emotions go out the window.”

U.S. MNT forward CLINT DEMPSEY
On advancing out of the Group of Death:
CD: “It’s great to advance out of the group – a group a lot of people thought we wouldn’t advance from. We would have liked to end the last game on a better note, we would like to have got a result, but at the end, we’re excited about getting to the knockout stages and hopefully we can do better than the lats World Cup.”

On his awareness of what was happening in the Portugal-Ghana match:
CD: “I wasn’t [aware]. We just kept going, kept pushing for a draw. We knew if we got a draw then we’d go through, so that’s all we tried to push for. In the end, we did enough to get through.”

On being underrated by other teams:
CD: “Maybe by other people, but we believe in ourselves and always believed that we could get out of this group if we played well. I thought we put in a lot of work, showed a lot of character, even at times when weren’t playing the best ball. I thought we played really well last game. This game they had most of the possession. We were trying to keep shape, trying to do a better job when we got the ball to catch them on the counter and try to be a little bit better in the attacking third with our final passes. We just weren’t as sharp as we needed to be to get a goal today.” 

On the possibility of playing Belgium:
CD: “They’re another top team with a lot of quality players on their side. In the knockout stage, anybody can go through if you bring it on that day. We’ll do everything that we can and make sure that we put in the work that we need to and hopefully play to the best of our ability, and if we do that, I think we’ll get a result.”

On the group stage and reaction to moving on:
CD: “We showed a lot of character, in terms of how hard we’ve fought throughout the whole tournament really. We continued that even into the last game. We’re not happy with the result in terms of losing the game, but I think that we deserve to go through to the next round and I’m excited about the possibility of getting to knockout stages which we always wanted to do. The fact that we were able to get out of a very difficult group shows the belief that we had in ourselves.”

On mindset heading into the knockout stage:
CD: “Everything’s fresh again. It doesn’t matter what you’ve done in the group stages, it’s what you’re going to do on that day. I think there’s more pressure to that game because you either stay or you go home. You want to keep staying. You want to keep fighting for the opportunity to be in this tournament as long as possible to go as far as you can go. At the same time, it’s that balance of managing that game in terms of trying to go for the win but at the same time making sure you stay in it as well. I’m excited about the opportunity to play in a knockout stage again. We came up a little bit short last time, in 2010, losing in overtime to Ghana and we look forward to playing against, I think it might be Belgium.”

On the MNT’s success helping soccer in the U.S.:
CD: “You want the game to keep moving in the right direction. You want to continue the development of the game in the states and hope that one day we can get to a final in a major tournament and do really well. That’s what you hope for. I think that we’re playing well and if you look at the last game, I thought we moved the ball around really well and created chances. Today was a different type of game. As much as you want to go out and try to push the game, you also have to be smart because you know in the back of your mind that a draw gets you through. It’s not like a normal game because there’s a lot of factors that play into it. I’m just happy to be not in a situation of trying to calculate. I’m just happy to in the knockout stages and keep progressing.”

On Jermaine Jones possibly breaking his nose:
CD: “I guess that’s the way it goes. We have a team that has a lot of heart, a lot of character. We keep going, we keep fighting. I’m sure, if he did break his nose, just like what happened to me, he’ll be ready for the next game.”

On Jozy Altidore possible coming back and what he means to the team:
CD: “I don’t know what the chances are, but he’s a big part of our team and he played a big part in terms of helping us qualify for the World Cup. Hopefully he gets back sooner rather than later, but in terms of how that’s going I don’t know exactly.”

On the possibility of playing Belgium:
CD: “If it is Belgium, they are a top squad with a lot of quality players. You have to make sure that you stay compact defensively. When they have the ball, they have players that can make a difference in terms of running at you. At the same time, I think we’ve got to be more on the front foot. Play our game. Play more the way that we did against Portugal than what we played today. Be a little bit more confident in possession and show a little bit more quality in the attacking third.”

On the slow start and abnormal conditions against Germany:
CD: “It was weird conditions in terms of all the rain and not being able to have a proper warm-up on the field. You’re having to go behind the goal. You’re not even getting to do a possession game, not even getting to do any shots on goal. Just a weird preparation. Also in the back of your mind, a lot of your family not being able to make it to the game because of the traffic and everything and just wanting to make sure that they’re safe. There were just a lot of factors I think going into today’s game that made it a difficult one for both teams really because of the conditions and not being able to get a normal warm-up.”


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