Real Salt Lake 3 - Portland Timbers 2 - Post Match Quotes

It would be easy to think that the ball is glued to his shoe, but it must be magnets, because in Portland he kept it on his feet right up to the point where he put it in the back of the net. (photo by me)

Real Salt Lake stepped up big time after going up 1-0 in the first half, only to surrender 2 goals to the Timbers in the second half, but the never say die attitude of RSL shone as the team found a way to get a 89th minute equalizer by Jonny Steele, and a 93rd minute winner from Kyle Beckerman. In perhaps the most entertaining match of the MLS season, both teams played attractive, aggressive, attacking soccer, it was oh so fun to watch. So thanks to the RSL communication team, we can check out the post match comments from the locker room:

Head coach Jason Kreis:

Feeling on second half:
"I felt like we were going to score but I don't want to say too much as I would have been happy with a tie. However, I felt that the third goal was a little bit of a gift and I walked away with a smile on my face."

Rebounding from last week's loss:
"No, we lost last week, but the performance was very good, it was silly that we lost that game. I thought we kept up with the guys on the field and performed well just like we have all year. We're not going to criticize ourselves over what is in the past, we just are going to go out there more."

Thoughts on Steele's performance:
"He did great, but there are a few tactical things I know he needs to work on. Obviously we are really happy to see him get the goal."

Thoughts on Beckerman's performance:
"Yeah he absolutely wanted that goal. Even with his miss he was right back into it either way. I am glad he got the goal."

Overall thoughts on the match:
"I thought Portland was really dynamic. I saw things I hadn't really seen before like bringing their outside midfielders in. Eric Alexander was everywhere tonight, causing a lot of problems for us He was coming inside and making things look different. Nagbe as well caused us trouble by getting inside and behind Beckerman to cause plays in the first and second half. If I was John [Spencer] I'd be really pleased with my group because I thought they played really well. "

more comments after the jump:

Midfielder Kyle Beckerman

Feelings on tonight's match:
"We had to try to keep pushing. We would have been okay with a tie, but we are fortunate to come out with a win, especially in front of a crowd like this."

Positives to take from the match:
"We will take some confidence boosts from this, and, of course, winning a game gives it to you. But we have to turn around and get ready for the game on Wednesday because it doesn't stop. You have to take it one game at a time."

This season vs. last against Portland:
"They came into our place when we needed a win and we only got a tie. Home or away they are a tough team to beat. Yeah, you like to play them more at home."

Midfielder Jonny Steele
Atmosphere of crowd:

"The fans are unbelievable here and that's the way soccer should be. It's very European."

On scoring the game-tying goal:
"I just came into the game and looked to make an impact and that's what happened. We got the goals we wanted. I happened to be in the right spot to score the goal. That moment really gave us the buzz to get going the rest of the way. Beckerman's goal just sealed the deal."

Head coach John Spencer

On overall performance:
"Just disappointing, obviously. Guys are obviously gutted ... I think we had chances to close the game out and win it. It's a cruel game sometimes and tonight is one of those games."

On second-half adjustments:
"Well I thought the first half we had some good chances, obviously ... I don't think we started the game as slow, like we did the last couple of games. I thought we were at it at a good team, tempo of the game was pretty good; I felt that we probably edged the first half. Then you got a goal down, you come in, try to get the guys going again. Guys were kind of upbeat in the locker room at halftime, felt that we had a good performance, very unfortunate to be down a goal. We came out and played with energy again. I felt we dominated the game most of the [second] half, but when you play against good teams, you got to close the game out."

On Darlington Nagbe's performance:
"Well I thought it was two wonderful goals. It gives us two good chances ... puts us 2-1 up, and I think on them nights when you're expecting to take a few points, and as I said, very, very disappointed. Not with the performance, just very disappointed with the result."

On coming back from a 1-0 deficit again:
"You know, we never came back last year after going a goal down, and we've done it three games now, so that's a positive. "

On going forward:
"It's a loss at home against one of the best teams in the country for the last three, four years. I think if we would've gotten blown out and never looked capable playing against them and we're short in every department, then I think that would be guys being down on their confidence. I think you've seen us attacking ... they struggled to cope with us for most of the game. So I don't think confidence is going to be a huge problem."

Midfielder/forward Darlington Nagbe
On his goals:
"I think the first one was a throw-in to me, and I took a touch on the guy, went inside and just hit it low and it went in. And the second one, everyone was underplaying the ball and it was bouncing so I decided to hit it and lucky it went in."

On how to close games:
"You just got to come out, and stay focused for 90 minutes. Coach has been saying, he's been telling us over and over to stay focused for 90 minutes."

On how to recover from a game like this:
"Hopefully you sleep it off, and wake up the next day and come back ready for training."

On his confidence:
"It's crazy how the momentum changes, and you feel on top of the world, but then you feel like crap after. It felt good scoring two goals, but I just wish we would've won the game."

Forward Kris Boyd
On feeling after the game:

"I don't know. I'm gutted, I'm disappointed. We put so much effort into the game; just dominated for large, large pieces of the game. We know they're a good team, we know they got it done in the past."

More general thoughts:
"It's easy to point the finger at them and look at it from that point of view, but we're 2-1 up in 88 minutes, and at worst we should draw the game ... It's a hard one to swallow."

There you go, some great thoughts from both locker rooms after what was a hell of a match.

OFF MY SOAPBOX

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