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Seattle Sounders vs. Real Salt Lake: Highlights, stats and quotes

“A couple of guys played well and tried to win the game while still trying to press, but there aren’t a lot of positives to take away.” -Brian Schmetzer


Match Data

SUMMARY

Seattle Sounders FC 0 - Real Salt Lake 3

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Venue: Rio Tinto Stadium

Referee: Armando Villarreal

Assistants: Nick Uranga, Jeffrey Greeson

Fourth Official: Alex Chilowicz

VAR: Malik Badawi

Attendance: 17,825

Weather: 90 degrees and clear

SCORING SUMMARY

RSL - Sam Johnson (Aaron Herrera) 25’

RSL - Albert Rusnak (Damir Kreilach, Corey Baird) 71’

RSL - Corey Baird (Damir Kreilach) 87’

MISCONDUCT SUMMARY

RSL - Everton Luiz (caution) 52’

SEA - Joevin Jones (caution) 70’

LINEUPS & STATS

Seattle Sounders FC - Stefan Frei; Kelvin Leerdam (Handwalla Bwana 76’), Saad Abdul-Salaam, Xavier Arreaga, Jonathan Campbell, Joevin Jones; Cristian Roldan, Jordy Delem (Gustav Svensson 64’), Nicolás Lodeiro; Raul Ruidíaz, Luis Silva (Jordan Morris 62’)

Substitutes not used: Bryan Meredith, Harry Shipp, Danny Leyva, Justin Dhillon

Total shots: 6 (Lodeiro, 2)

Shots on goal: 0

Fouls: 8 (Three players, 2)

Offside: 1 (Bwana, 1)

Corner-kicks: 3 (Lodeiro, 3)

Saves: 1 (Frei, 1)

Real Salt Lake - Nick Rimando; Aaron Herrera, Justen Glad (Marcelo Silva 84’), Nedum Onuoha, Donny Toia; Damir Kreilach, Everton Luiz, Jefferson Savarino, Albert Rusnak (Joao Plata 76’), Corey Baird; Sam Johnson (Justin Portillo 66’)

Substitutes not used: Andrew Putna, Brooks Lennon, Kyle Beckerman, Sebastian Saucedo

Total shots: 16 (Rusnak, 4)

Shots on goal: 4 (Rusnak, 2)

Fouls: 8 (Luiz, 4)

Offside: 2 (Johnson/Savarino, 1)

Corner-kicks: 3 (Rusnak, 3)

Saves: 0


Post-Match Quotes

Seattle Sounders FC

Head Coach Brian Schmetzer

Initial reaction on the match:

“The stats that stick out on the scoreline are the three goals we gave up, but then one of my favorites stats – duels won – they’re at 58% and we were at 42%. Normally, our team competes very well, so that’s an issue for me. But we’ve got to start doing some things to stop three goals in a game.”

On new formation success:

“The first goal came off a giveaway in transition and a deflection. So I can’t really fault a new formation for that. I thought we had some decent moments at the end of the first half and in the second half then they scored the second goal. Just in a transition moment, a step to a guy we know can shoot the ball. And then at that point, we went back to a 4-2-3-1 to try and just simplify the game.”

On the message to the team at halftime:

“Just not to let in any other goals because we felt that we had the quality to get the next one. Goals change the game. So when they got the second goal, they were in control.”

Other positive takeaways:

“We were priming good stuff to get back in it, and we’ve got to ramp it up. The guys from hamstring injuries, you’ve got to try and build their fitness and strength them up. But other than that, a couple of guys played well and tried to win the game while still trying to press, but there aren’t a lot of positives to take away.”

On his postgame message:

“All I told them to do was to think about some of the plays and the things that I want them to consider. Next time we step on the field, which I hope will take root, is that they can build on whatever their own reflection was after the game and some of my words, and then get their physical preparation down because that’s most important.”

Midfielder Christian Roldan

Initial reaction:

“We were unfortunate to give up the first goal, and that made us push forward and press a little bit more and left us exposed a little bit. Good teams find a way to create chances and they were very fortunate to score two very good goals, but at the end of the day, we were stretched because we were chasing the game at 1-0 and we have one or two chances that we could have finished.”

On the team being composed at the end of the first half:

“With our last cross, we put ourselves in a really good spot and just right outside the box. And we couldn’t capitalize on that final pass. And it’s unfortunate, that’s something that we need to work on.”

On switching back to a 4-2-3-1 formation:

“You have a little bit more cover. So you’re able to take a little bit more risks going forward. And in the end, it’s a little difficult to press at times in that formation because our weak backs have to do a lot of work and if we’re not up to the challenge, and then it makes it tough on everybody. So you know unfortunate to lose the game 3-0. I didn’t think we deserve to lose the game by that many goals, but in the end, you lose a game 1-0 or 3-0 it’s the same thing you got to move forward and focus on Galaxy.”

On remaining games of the season

“Although frustrating that we haven’t gotten results in the past, maybe 10 or 11 games. We’re still more than capable of rallying up and getting results on the road and at home, and then making a run. We were in second place and now we’ll see what happens, but we have very tough opponents coming up and if we are going to make our mark, now is the time.”

Forward Luis Silva

On the game:

“It’s a good feeling. I thought we had a good game plan. We’re playing away this game and we have a game on Saturday already, a quick turn around so we just have to learn from this one and move on to next week.”

On how it’s been with the team:

“It’s been good. Everyone’s been super welcoming. I got in less than a week ago and I’m still adapting. Its still gonna take some time to get along with the guys on the field, which is important. But I think we can take some good positive stuff out of this game.”

On his adjustment from getting back from Europe

“I feel pretty good. Obviously, the level here is a lot faster. The time change is 10 hours so trying to get accustomed to that should be good over time. I felt good today out there.”

His thoughts on the team’s performance:

“I’m confident in the guys. I can see it in their face [they’re motivated], I can see it in the locker room. We’re going to keep that playoff run and hopefully we get a championship.”

Real Salt Lake

Assistant Coach Tyrone Marshall

On the match:

“Quick overview of tonight, very good from the boys. Having scored three goals at home against a very good opponent in Seattle. It just shows a true testament of what we’ve been doing over the past three weeks and coming out tonight, we knew it was going to be a hard game. Especially going to Kansas City in a tough environment, weather and all that stuff playing a factor and coming back home and not letting down. I thought we did a fantastic job tonight, we scored three goals rather than a shutout which is a good thing for us. So overall, it was very good for the group.”

On Freddy’s first win as head coach:

“Look, Freddy was officially named as the interim head coach but going back two or three games we played in Dallas, Freddy stepped in and we did the job there. So coming back home knowing that he’s a guy that’s at the helm right now and getting the win for him, I think it’s fantastic. The group mentality has been the same. We just want to make sure that we go out and we play good football. The guys have been embracing it and running with it. So we’re just going to continue to keep the momentum.”

On possession being a big part of their strategy moving forward:

“I think it’s going to be a huge part of what we’re doing. Like you saw tonight, just having the ball, letting the opponent work, eventually they’re going to tire down, especially at home. I think that’s a big factor coming into altitude. You could see on the second goal when Corey got it and outran the back line and played it over to Albert. That’s what we want. We want to wear them down come the second half so we can create our chances. I know we’ll get him so that possession is going to be huge for us.”

On their expectation of having so much possession of the ball tonight:

“We expected that. Just from all of their communication, all of the talk all week, and they’re coming out of their camp and we’re coming in. They wanted to sit back and try to counter attack us. So we knew we were going to have a lot of possession. That’s where we’re creating that line of three a lot of times with Dami dropping in, or Albert or Everton, just to create that overload when they added to up top with Silva and Ruidiaz because they are going to press out of there. So by us dropping that extra guy in will create an overload and guys were moving and their rotation was very good. And again, they were conceding enough possession and hoping we can make a turnover and they could counter with it. So I thought the boys did fantastic again to maintain that possession and then getting a goal out of it. I think that helped.”

On managing tired legs:

“Well, we’ll see what the recovery is. We couldn’t afford to go to Kansas City and play such a fantastic game and not come back here and get a result. We’re going to put out the best lineup that we could to make sure the guys get a result. Once you win, guys recover quicker, so we’ll see tomorrow, when the guys come in to do the rehab to see how they’re feeling and then we’ll go from there. There’s all the guys are going to step up too. Bofo is going to be ready, Brooks is going to be ready; Joao. Marcelo. All those guys. Everyone is going to step up, next man up, and we’ll see if we can continue this rhythm”

On the opportunity against LA:

“I think this is a good point to catch them. We’re playing well. They’re coming in. They’ve been fantastic all year, so it’s good for us to catch them on a rhythm like this that we’re in. I think the boys are going to be full of confidence, and that’s what you want, especially playing against a tough team. We’re going to rise up to that standard as well, and then we’ll see what happens when the ball rolls out.”

On defensive performances:

“What’s clicking with us, not just the back four but the rotation and the guys directly in front of them. What’s clicking so well is they’re able to shut down everything. I think everyone’s working for each other, we’re getting behind the ball, we’re trying to get in the passing lanes. I think that’s been the attitude over the past four or five games. We went through a stretch where we didn’t give up a goal in like three or four games, I think they scored but not from the run of play. It was like set pieces and so on and so forth, but not in the run of play. As a defender, you appreciate that, and the goalkeepers as well. The rhythm that we’ve been in lately, everyone is trying to prevent goals from going in, because if they don’t score goals, it’s a good opportunity to get a result. That’s been a mentality as well, don’t give up goals we’ll get results.”

On the up and down season:

“Well, you can see over the last three seasons, we’ve always been a good second-half team. Obviously, we’ve gone through trials and tribulations in the first half - red cards and losing in San Jose in the last minute, getting two red cards in DC and going down 5-0, stuff like that. I think we will learn, will become a little bit more resilient, and I think we’ve started to show that now that we’ve learned or gotten our hard knocks, so to speak. I know we’re understanding of what it takes to get the result. That’s what you see on the field. Guys are understanding what they need to do to get results and getting everybody behind the ball, getting guys on board, being unselfish and that’s what we’ve been doing so far, and that’s what’s been working.”

On all their goals coming from different players:

“I think everyone is starting to step up. I know that we’re calling on everyone. I think in the past, when Sam was healthy, I thought Sam being the number nine we were trying to feed him as much as possible. But when Sam was out, we were looking to other guys to step up and score. So it’s great that Corey stepped up the last game score two and he came and scored again tonight with Sam and Albert. So it does show that everyone’s contributing and they’re working and looking for each other. That’s the key. Everyone’s looking for each other. And when you have a team that’s unselfish, there’s a good potential that you’re going to see a lot more goals from a lot more people.”

On the movement of the attacking third players:

“I thought their movement in between the lines was very good. Especially early on, Albert coming back in when we didn’t get a chance to touch the ball. I didn’t think we were finding Sam as much early on. He was making some fantastic runs along the backline, but we weren’t picking up our head and finding it because we had so much of the possession. So we’re just trying to keep it and let them run. But I thought Albert and Damir once they get on the ball, those are our playmakers. We want those guys to make those final passes. So it was good for them to get on the ball and touch it. And to see who else was going to run off of it. So it’s good to have those guys.”

Forward Sam Johnson

On his connection for the first goal:

“First of all, I would like to give a big hand to the team and Aaron, the one who passed me the ball. He’s a player that always looks for that on the training ground, so he did exactly that tonight on the pitch. Everytime he gets the ball, I know that he is looking, picking up his head, to see the people who like to run at the backline. Everytime he gets the ball, he is looking to do something like that, so I try to make the run. If it comes to me then good, if it doesn’t come to me at least I made the run.”

On his return:

“I am happy to be back. I came here to Salt Lake to play, I never came to sit. Since I arrived, I’ve been in and out with injuries, but I’m happy to be back and I’m happy to be with the team again. They all support me when I was injured and encouraged me, so I wanted to come back strong to help them.”

On the form of the team:

“I think everybody is feeling good right now. Of course at the beginning of the season, we weren’t doing well, but I think now everybody has woken up, everybody wants something, everybody needs something, so everybody is on the same page. Everybody is thinking that we need to win games, we need to lift the cup this coming season. We need to do something this season at least, so now I think everybody is feeling good.”

Defenders Nedum Onuoha Aaron Herrera

On the defense:

Nedum: “I think we’re just getting momentum, to be honest, through good play and good understanding of what’s required of us. Once you start getting the results, it’s easy to believe in. The players, every time they step onto the field, we honestly believe we can keep the clean sheet. I felt a bit of pressure today because they’ve been doing so well recently to come back into form. The way the team is, it was the perfect game to get back into it.”

On his play as a winger:

Aaron: “It was fun, that’s for sure. Seattle’s the one that sort of forces you into that. They were playing a formation where they sat back and they had a bunch of guys up through the middle so I actually had a ton of space. It was kind of weird in a way, because we almost had too much time. I’d receive the ball and I’d be able to carry it 20 yards and then sort of just pass it off. I think Seattle, they came in and sat back.”

On Seattle’s bunkering down on defense:

Nedum: “We are in good form, but we can be quite guilty of being sort of sloppy on the ball if we are basically forced to try and take the game on. I think today, we eliminated a lot of our sloppy mistakes which we’ve been guilty of in the past in games like this. It’s a tough place to play, especially midweek. They have a few injuries and things like that, it was their strategy to try and get the three points. I don’t think they came for a draw. There were spells where they were on top of the game, so even though that was their opening strategy I think they could of had a few at the back stick as well.”

On Sam Johnson’s goal:

Aaron: “We know when Sam’s on the field, he’s always going to give us that danger in behind. It should always be our first look and that’s what we work on during the week sometimes. Their defender on the ball, I kind of just read his eyes and then he sort of mishit it to me and I had a ton of space, but I saw Sam going, so anytime you put Sam behind, we’re going to give ourselves a chance to score. On that play, I believe we also had two other guys open on the back post, so if Sam would have missed that, we probably would have been pretty mad at him. Like I said, any time Sam’s out there, he’s a danger behind and a great finish.”

On the team’s position on the table:

Nedum: “You always say it’s a long season at the start of the season when we were struggling in parts. The belief was always there because I thought we had a really good team, everyone else believed in themselves. Things will eventually go our way, as long as we stick to what we were supposed to be doing. I think as time passed, we really do start to feel the benefit now. To be in contention in the West at this stage, that is obviously great, but we need to get over the line. Get ourselves into the playoffs, maybe get home field advantage going into them as well. To be an in form side at this part of the season is great, and we’ll always have the belief.”

On the defense:

Nedum: “We believe in defending not just at the back, but from the front. When everybody’s doing that, then it makes it easy for the guys at the back and you can make better decisions. You’ve got more time because of people in the right place instead of it being so essentially reactive all the time. People are just in the right positions, and they’re ready prepared for most things that come our way. Then you also have that desire to keep the ball as you go, which you can’t really buy and some people have that some people don’t. I think looking at the goals that we’ve conceded recently, you look at the starting line guys and the guys who come in as well, and that’s the mentality going forward.”

On mentality for LAFC:

Aaron: “I think we want three points. We are not going to come out and try to sit back. I think we’re going to come out and try to play where we’re going for the win. Tonight was a good game for us. Getting those early goals, late in the first half and then early goal in the second half. It helped us conserve some energy for that game. We have two days to rest, everyone will be doing everything we can to be fresh, and then I think we’re going to go and try to win.”

On goals coming from different players:

Nedum: “It’s just belief. The team is playing well. Whenever you’re on the front foot, you find more people in key areas and have big opportunities. We believe that if we’re secure at the back so people can go forward. The people that we have in the side, everyone can score except myself, Aaron and Justen but everyone else can score. To see everyone get in there, you don’t really worry. Every time we step out to the field, I believe that we’re going to score goals. It’s not necessarily going to come from someone who’s going to score 30 goals a season, but we have enough players in the side who can chip in and when the time comes they seem to do it.”

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