Algarve Quote Sheet: WNT vs. Switzerland - March 6, 2015

U.S. WNT head coach Jill Ellis

On improvements from the first match day to the second:
“I thought we were patient. In the first half, Switzerland made it hard for us to play and they got numbers behind the ball, but I thought our patience and our tempo certainly picked up in the second half.  We obviously had some great finishes off a set piece and two goals in the run up play which I thought were fantastic. Our game changers came in and made a difference so I was really pleased; really pleased all-around with the performance.”

On Switzerland playing five or six players across the back:
“We have to move the ball quicker and move off the ball quicker, and that’s what we challenged them with at the halftime. We have to move and pick up the energy a little bit, and I think we did that. I think we started to move the pieces around and played more diagonal balls to stretch them a little bit and then we got it. I thought in the second half we played much better.”

On the advantage of getting all six substitutions in today:
“It’s huge. It’s part of our depth and it’s part of our build up to the World Cup. We need to know who can come in and make a difference. The players that came in were impactful and obviously we got to rest some legs which was huge at this point in the tournament.”

On Shannon Boxx making her first appearance with the WNT since April of 2013:
“I wanted someone in there to stabilize things and that can be a good role for Boxxy, to come in, tackle, win balls and stabilize us. She did that so I was really pleased for her.”

On the play of the back line, especially Meghan Klingenberg:
“Kling is a scrapper. She likes to go forward, attacking is her game but she has gotten much better defensively one-on-one. I thought the back line was solid overall with solving the players in front of them, and the runners behind them. They did a good job. To keep a clean sheet was fantastic. Hope‘s save was phenomenal. I was most pleased with the whole effort of the backline and the goalkeeper.”

U.S. WNT forward Abby Wambach

On the team being able to get on all six substitutes, including herself:
“This is a World Cup environment in terms of the structure of the tournament, so having multiple players not only come on and play but make a difference, that’s what it’s going to take to win a World Cup. Seven games is a lot and that’s obviously what we hope to accomplish and get to. But you’re going to have to play a lot of players to get there and play well. It’s not just about the best eleven playing seven straight, 90-minute games…Tonight it showed that we not only can play those starting eleven but the players that come off the bench can make an immediate impact.”

On her goal against Switzerland:
“When the ball went towards the defender I thought she was going to make  a play on it and when she didn’t,  I feel like I was in slow motion because I honestly thought she was going to touch the ball and she didn’t, she let the ball ran across her front. I kind of just ran as fast as I could, however slow that may have looked, got to the end of it, saw the goalkeeper was retreating to the back of her line and did my best to get a little bit of air under the ball, and luckily it went into the net.”

U.S. WNT forward Amy Rodriguez

On getting on the score sheet for the National Team:
“It feels good to score again. It’s been a while since I scored, so it was exciting and it was a great game to do it in too.”

On how the goal came about:
“Just a few quick little touches in front of the net. I felt like I had pressure from the ‘keeper and a defender, so tried some quick touches and tried to scoop it in. I’ve been getting a lot of comments about my quick feet so I’m just happy I was able to put it in.”

On the match overall:
“The huge thing is that we walked away with three points. We want to be in the championship of the Algarve Cup so, we have to keep working towards that and try to get another win against Iceland.”

U.S. WNT forward Alex Morgan

On the team’s patience to break down the Switzerland defense:
“[Switzerland] was playing a five-[person] backline, they were playing a slower pace than we wanted to and were trying to slow down the game. I think in the first half we played into what they wanted, but we came in and regrouped at halftime and realized we needed to step up the pace and play a little quicker. We came out ready to do that in the second half and converted our chances. I’m really happy with the way our team changed the game.”

On her goal from Lauren Holiday’s free kick:
“I just played with the offside line, the marker lost me and [Lauren] plays amazing balls in whether it’s off a free kick or in the run of play and she found me in the exact spot I was meant to be. All I needed was a tap in so, it was really all [Lauren’s] work and I was just on the end to finish it.”

U.S. WNT midfielder Shannon Boxx

On the feeling of returning to international competition after being away for almost two years:
“It felt amazing! It’s been a long road but, it’s been a fun road of trying to make it back. The support of my teammates has been amazing so I felt like when I got on the field everyone was super excited for me. The adrenaline was going! I was only in there for like 10 minutes but, I was like, ‘Whoo!’” It was fun and I’m hoping for a little bit more this trip. But the team is doing great. In the second half, the team picked it up and got some really good goals. It was a lot of fun.”