Training Quotes | #MINvFCD
© Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Training Quotes | #MINvFCD

Presented by:   Star Tribune

MINNESOTA UNITED HEAD COACH ADRIAN HEATH

On a seven game unbeaten streak and riding that momentum into the playoffs…
“Well it’s nice. As you said, it’s seven games, can we make it eight? Can we go into the playoffs with some momentum? Can we go and get a home field advantage, which is a lot at stake this weekend. But if we play like we did in the second half the other night, then we have a chance.”

On being within arm’s reach of a home playoff game given the difficulties of this season…
“It’s been an incredibly difficult year for everybody. And I think we’ve had it a bit more than most with the injuries that we’ve had. I think back to even the George Floyd situation where we probably didn’t train for a week then because of what was going on in and around the city. It’s been a very, very difficult year. Kudos to the players, they’ve kept battling on and everybody’s been needed because, as I say, with the injuries that we’ve had, everybody’s stepped up and it’s a big game for us at the weekend. I’m pleased for the players and now let’s see if we can go and get home field advantage.”

On facing a hot FC Dallas team…
“Well the games are generally very tight at home. We’ve had the better of them a couple times at home but all the games have been really, really tight. I don’t expect anything different. They’ve got good dynamic players, very good on the counter attack so we’re going to have to make sure that we play to our best, I think, to go and get the result.”


MINNESOTA UNITED MIDFIELDER ETHAN FINLAY

On preparing for Chicago Fire with the lack of training…
“It was extremely difficult. It’s hard enough for us older guys to keep our body primed and ready to go in the normal course of the week in normal times without a pandemic and, obviously, the lack of training we had leading up to the game. So it was very difficult. That being said, I thought the resiliency to fight back in the second half was great and everyone’s facing these challenges, we understand that, we’re not using it as an excuse, but we’ll try to use these nice couple days in Minnesota and some group training to be a little bit better.”

On the differences between the two halves against Chicago…
“We had chances in the first half, just happen to not score and they took advantage of their chances. It took us a little bit to figure out to press them and, defensively, our shape. The second half, you bring on a special player and you know [Emanuel Reynoso], from the moment he hit the field, he really brought some energy to the game for us, especially offensively. It was really good to see him come out there and show what he’s all about. He hasn’t had too many opportunities this year just with how everything has panned out, but we look forward to some of his best football coming ahead.”

On Decision Day and solidifying a home playoff spot this weekend...
“For me, it’s very clear: you win and you’re in that fourth spot. So that would be our sole focus, to get a home playoff game. It’s nice, honestly, going into those games when you don’t have to depend on anybody else or any other result to go your way, for one thing to go the way you want it. We have full control of that. We get to play at home, even on Decision Day, which I think is a great benefit. We know what’s at stake so we gotta go out there and take care of business.”

On preparing for FC Dallas for the third time this season…
“It’s difficult to play a team so often but you figure out their strengths, you figure out their weaknesses. For me, it’s a game we’ll have at home which I think will probably be, hopefully be the biggest differentiator in the whole situation. Doing the same day travel has been very difficult on teams and hopefully we can use that to our benefit.”

On the difficulties of the 2020 season…
“It’s been difficult on the world, I don’t want to sit on a soap box here and say how difficult it’s been here with a lot of people out of work, out of business and dealing with a pandemic on the health side. It’s been difficult for all of us, it’s been difficult for our families, lot of people not being able to see their families whether it be in the United States or abroad. Surely it’s been difficult on us, as players, as staff, the media, you know all of this has been so different and it’s forever changing it seems like, daily, weekly. It’s extremely challenging but there have been a lot of great benefits to come out of this year. We’ve seen some good play from some guys, we’ve seen some guys step up like Michael Boxall this year, he’s been a real bright spot for us. Dayne [St. Clair] getting the run of mill and getting some time and really showing what he’s got. So there’s definitely some positive that this team can, at the end of the season wherever we end up, playoffs, raising the MLS Cup or not, that there’s definitely some positives we can take away from the season going into 2021.”


DEFENDER SAM GLEADLE

On his first training session with the team…
“It’s been good. The quarantine was long and, obviously, with this weird season it took a little while but it’s good to finally get around the guys.”

On joining a team in a playoff race…
“It’s exciting. The group’s clearly done well throughout the season, it’s been full of challenges, but the guys have been really welcoming so far. I’ve seen them around the facility and now I get to train with them. I’m full of excitement, whether I’m involved or not, I think it’s good to get the experience and learn from them.”

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