Postgame Quotes | #CLBvMIN
© Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

Postgame Quotes | #CLBvMIN

MINNESOTA UNITED HEAD COACH ADRIAN HEATH

On if he thought they were going to pull off walking away with one point …
Yeah. And, having seen it, you know, I don’t normally complain about stuff, but having just watched it, I don’t know what the rule is anymore, because, we get told to keep the flag down and let the play finish and then we’ll have a look at it after. And, from the clip that we’ve just seen, he’s not offside. So, disappointed. And, that’ll be interesting to see what they say when they look at it. But, on the whole, I thought they would have been disappointed if they would have drawn the game, for sure. They were a good team. They’re well coached. Spent a lot of money on a lot of good players. As I said, when we played them down in Orlando, you know, I think they’re going to be there or thereabouts come the end of the season.

On what he saw from the effort and energy levels of the players for most of the game …
We obviously tried to get our shape a little bit similar to them, a 4-4-2 defensive shape and make it difficult. But, what they’re really good at, is spreading the pitch out and then they get [Lucas] Zelarayan in them little holds, and they did that better than us. They played out from their back a lot better than us this evening. And, you know, that caused us problems. Because, once you get an overload in certain areas, which they’re good at doing, and then they get people like [Lucas] Zelarayan and Pedro Santos and [Luis] Diaz on the ball, then they become a problem. You know, they’re not top of the league by four points by accident. This is a good team. Well coached. And, I knew it was going to be really tough. But one thing I will say, is, our lads kept going. I thought we’d get a goal off of some sort of set piece. I was pleased for Robin [Lod] to get another goal. Is that seven, or eight, for him this season? So that’s good for him. And, as I say, looking at the last free kick, it doesn’t look offside to me. So, maybe we can feel a little bit aggrieved. But, hey, it is what it is and then move on. It’ll be nice to have a couple of games at home just to stay at home and not be traveling. We’ll see where we are when we get to the stage where we even all the games up.

On some positives he can take from tonight’s game …
I thought [Emanuel] Reynoso was outstanding. Such a good footballer. And his work rate is top-drawer. I thought Dayne [St. Clair], Dayne will be a little bit disappointed that the second goal beat him for power and pace. Where, I thought he kept the goal very well. He looked calm all evening. That bodes well for his future. I thought the two center midfield players worked really, really hard, considering at times, they were outnumbered in there. And, obviously, it’s nice for us to get some minutes out of Kei [Kamara]. That will stand him in good stead for the next couple of games at home, which, we know are going to be big for us.  

On what he thought of Kei Kamara’s 70 minutes and how he fit in with the squad …
His hold-up play is something that we’ve been lacking. Just having a big body up there to get a hold of things. You know, I don’t think that we gave it to him enough, early enough, played it to his feet and followed. But that’s something that we can work on. The issues that we’re having at this moment, like every team, I suppose, is that we aren’t having enough time to work with players. By the time we get in tomorrow, it’s two or three in the morning, and then, you know, tomorrow is regen and then day after, the next 36 hours are trying to get the legs back under the players and get them fresh to go again on Sunday. So, at this minute, it’s not ideal for everybody. And, you only have to look at some of the lineups that one or two teams are putting out. It’s becoming really tough for us.

On Thomas Chacon in his first start, and what he did and didn’t see out of him …
He worked hard. I think it was difficult for him, the way that they play. And, Afful is a really good player. One of the better right backs in this system, the way that they play. So, it was difficult. He worked hard, I can’t fault him for that. In terms of getting on the ball, we didn’t have enough of the ball to get him to see things out of him. But, obviously, he’ll be pleased that he’s had a run at it. So, we’ll assess it when we have another chance to look at the game, and, then, we’ll probably have a better opinion of how he did.

On if he’ll have Bakaye Dibassy available for Sunday’s game against Real Salt Lake …
Yeah. Yeah, I do. Yes, we’re hoping that he’s going to be okay.

On an update on Kevin Molino’s status …
He’s a little bit tight. As I said, while we’re in these games, guys, you know, we are certainly not going to risk players like Kevin [Molino] who are important to us. You know, it might have been different if it had been a Western Conference team and a game at home. But, certainly, on the road, against an Eastern Conference team, players as well as these are, we’re not going to risk one of our better players for sure.

On how the team continues to play such short turnaround games, and if there’s any game plan there …
It’s difficult. You know, you want to get some work done, but, you know if you don’t get the legs back under them and let them recharge their batteries fully. And, it’s mental as much as anything. Before you know it, we’re in preparation again, video analysis and everything for the players, you know, in two days’ time. It’s a bit relentless at this moment in time. And, it would be nice to have the likes of Ike [Opara] and [Bakaye] Dibassy and Ozzie [Alonso] and [Kevin] Molino. These guys, it would be nice to have them more fit. Unfortunately, obviously, Jan [Gregus] being out, suspended. It’s a core part of our team at this moment in time that we haven’t got. But, we’ll keep going. These guys will keep going. I know that. We’ll see where they are.

On if the team even has enough time to prepare for the next game and how it effects the squad positive and negatively …
Obviously, results change the way that you are mentally. And, at this moment in time, with the away games that we’ve had, it’s been mentally tough for the guys. You know, if you’re winning games, you don’t feel as tired. That’s a given. I’ve been through this. But, at this moment in time, this has been a tough stretch for us. And we know that. To welcome a couple of games at home. But, we know they’re not going to be easy because everybody is in the same boat. People are preparing the best they can. As I said, if you look at some of the lineups, teams are making a lot of changes. But, we need to get some players fit, so we can actually rotate them a wee bit more than we are doing in terms of putting people in the right spots rather than making six or seven changes. It would be nice to make three or four each game and keep livening and freshening it up. Hopefully this weekend we will get a couple of bodies back.

On if there are any initial things he has and will try to tell Kei Kamara and Emanuel Reynoso as they play together for the first time ...
[Emanuel Reynoso] Rey has not really seen Kei [Kamara]. He’s only seen clips of him scoring goals. We’ve gotta work on that final third when Reynoso gets in them, certainly them left-hand channels, where he’s starting to look up, we’ve got to make sure he’s where Kei likes to play, where he likes to be off that back shoulder. I’m sure that’s stuff that we can work on. But we’ve certainly not had any time. This is the first time that Kei has been with the group. He’s had to train on his own because of the quarantine. So, you know, it’s not ideal, but Kei will benefit from having the 60, 70 minutes under his belt tonight, and I think that will help him for the weekend.

 

MINNESOTA UNITED FORWARD KEI KAMARA

On how he felt out there tonight with his new teammates…
Actually, I want to start this off by saying I can’t wait to be out there at the polls and finding my way to cast my vote November 3. So I’m encouraging everybody out there that’s on the fence thinking about whether or not they want to do it. Please, make your decision because every vote is going to count. We want to see the future be bright, be better for our kids and our kid’s kids and people after that. Unity is everything and we are still praying for that and still fighting for that and hoping for change. So that’s what I wanted to start this with…

It was a tough day … a tough day, I’m just happy I was able to get out there with the boys and give my best (that I could) in this game, but at the end of the day it was a horrible decision at the end there, to kind of walk away with. I think they can definitely check that, that’s what VAR is for, so I’m really not happy. You know I’m going to give it your all as a player and you definitely want to make sure that everything else is going right and everybody’s doing their part.

On if his opening remarks were about the Breonna Taylor news…
It’s in general. We’re not just preaching Black Lives Matter like it’s just a slogan – it’s not. You know, we live everyday in our skin and everywhere we go, everywhere we walk. It’s in general. Yes, the news about Breonna Taylor today is … you know I’m laying in bed after our flight landed and getting ready to come to our game and just thinking “how, how, how…can this be a decision that hurts many.” And it’s amazing to see people out there standing up and standing up for what’s right and making sure that their voices are heard…but their voices are going to be a lot more powerful when it comes to decision day, to voting day. So, that’s definitely standing up for what is right, Breonna Taylor and the rest of people that have been suffering, for the rest of the families that are still crying. Definitely, we continue to stand with everyone else and myself, you know it’s hard to go and be looked at in a different way. I’m a soccer player, sure, but it’s bigger than that. Yes we still came out there tonight and played and put the focus and it’s still my peace, soccer is, but after the game and you go back into the locker room and you hear one or two things that are still going on … you’re like, “Why are we still here playing soccer?”

On if his previous answer is why he said it was a horrible game…
Yes, yes, yes, just not a good one. Not a good one. It’s a day where, like I said again, as us, we’re coming out and participating in sports and playing soccer, but there’s something so much bigger than what the game is. Yes, tonight we played a game and we ended up not getting the points that we wanted, we’re frustrated obviously at the call at the end of the game, too – that’s also another one, but something so much bigger that’s going on and hopefully people are not ignoring it because, you know, you get to watch soccer and get to be at peace and distraction for a little bit.

On if he would like to talk about the game at all…
Yeah, it’s a good effort from the boys. I have to give them a lot of credit. It’s my first time actually stepping on the field with the rest of the guys. Our quarantine rule is not really the most friendly. They can’t tell you drive 15 hours and be quarantined for 72 hours again. I wanted to be out there with the boys at training so I can bond with them a little bit more and not just be able to just jump on the flight and come over here and participate in the game. And, at the end of the day I think VAR is out there for a reason. We have to get what we deserve at the end of the day, but that one hurts really bad — that the call at the very end was injustice, too … so that’s horrible.

On being able to make a connection with the guys…
Yes, I saw the guys again. It’s not about me, it’s about the rest of the group and what the group is doing … and what they’ve been doing is really good. I’ve been watching from the outside and they’re playing the right way that the coach wants them to play and I can see the end product. You know, maybe one connection there with Dotson for the strike and the other one for Gasper with my header. It just shows, one game not even training with the team, but able to connect with them a couple times and it’s great. It’s a good locker room – I felt the energy right away for the first time that I’m in the locker room with them. So, it’s very positive and I like that everyone’s pissed off about how it ended, which is good because you can see that people are hungry and ready for the next game.

On about Reynoso’s run at the end…
It’s good, it’s work rate. You know like I said, I’m still new around here, new on the block and getting used to these guys, but they saw what he can do and obviously that’s the reason why he’s here and wearing the number that he wears which is big in soccer and he knows the amount of load that he has to carry with this team and that’s really good. And I can see that he wants to connect with myself or Aaron or anybody else that’s in there which is really good, you definitely want to reward him for the work that he’s doing. I think we are going to do that, this team is a good team – it’s a good group and the work rate is really high, but it’s also tough for every team in the league obviously playing game after game after game … so hopefully we are able to mentally prepare ourselves and physically prepare ourselves and get ready for the next game.

On taking the anger out on the field…
I think everybody’s feeling it right now. Every one of the guys in the locker room is feeling it. The fact that at the end of the game we felt like we had a point, we could take away a point, so the frustration of coming in and everybody watching the replay and seeing what should’ve happened … and I think that frustration is good for us, it’s positive, and we’re going back home … so that’s going to be good when we get back to Minnesota and be ready to play at home a couple of games because now we can’t control that anymore, we can’t go back and watch the video and go back to the field and change the decision, but that, I can’t say anger, but the frustration from that is good that we can take into the next game…and hopefully it’s a positive one for us.

On getting on the same page as other attackers when joining a new team…
Just watching them and seeing what everybody else is doing. You know, you don’t want to go in there and try to tell everybody to play to your system. You have to be the one to adapt into the system because it’s the easiest way. There’s too many guys to adapt into what you want, then to you adapting to what everyone else is doing. For me, I just want to train with the team. I just want to get back home and be able to train with the team and when we can train together then I start to understand some of these guys a little bit more, better. And same way goes around, but I wouldn’t be able to understand them because, again, I’ve been around the league, I’ve been around playing the game for a long time that I can fast-adapt to this system — the system that’s required. Obviously, I get brought into a system that the coaching staff felt like is going to fit my style of play, so the adaptation should not be too bad. I’m looking forward to just training with the guys finally.

 

MINNESOTA UNITED MIDFIELDER HASSANI DOTSON

On the midfielder pairing of him and Jacori Hayes…
“First and foremost before I answer your question, I just want to emphasize the message of Kei [Kamara] and the rest of my teammates in the club and many others that it’s important for all of us to share our voice and to register, I mean to vote, registration already closed obviously, but I think it’s very important. It’s good for the communities and for our country.

On to your question. Yeah, I enjoy playing with Jacori. In training, we’ve developed a good partnership and I feel like we have a lot of similarities. Just like me, he’s a willing runner, he’s good with both feet.”

On whether the team watched the replay of the offside goal call in the locker room after the game…
“Yeah, we did. It’s pretty disappointing, especially to see that maybe the officials could have waited, let the goal happen and then maybe they wouldn’t have enough evidence to overturn it. That’s football. We had the whole rest of the game to get another goal but it’s a little disappointing but it’s time to bounce back and get ready for the weekend.”

On what the team is doing to get new players like Kei Kamara quickly adjusted on the field…
“Kei is a veteran. Very good. He’s a great locker room guy, in just this trip already. He’s all about team camaraderie and he gives the young guys some tips like, ‘Hey this is how we could communicate better.’ I think it was a good start, playing with him today and I think it can only get better from here.”

On if it would have been a just result walking away with a point…
“For us, every game, we try to win the game. As a competitor, I want to win the game, for me, a point is not good enough but given that we were 2-nil down, we would have taken the point at that stage. I don’t think it’s really my job to justify if we should, if we were deserving for a point because we are all competitors and soccer if very fluid so if you don’t score on your chances then the likelihood of it coming back to haunt you gets greater.”

On getting a little run of games at home…
“It’s more comfortable being able to do your normal routine and playing at Allianz [Field], we’re looking forward to it but at the end of the day, each match is put in front of us. Everyone plays home and away and we want to win each game if possible.”

On knowing the rest of the regular season schedule…
“In terms of preparing for the week, preparing for the opponent, it’s always one game at a time but it’s always nice to that there’s a plan in place to know maybe we have a week to recover or this week, we gotta manage the body. So it’s nice to see it all laid out.”

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