Pablo Mastroeni, Rapids Head Coach
On the match:
Physical, field was wet, slick, hard-nosed game. I think for the first time this year we encountered a team that actually came in to make it hard for us to play, as opposed to trying to go out and find the game themselves. This is a great learning experience for our group, and if we continue on the same form, there’s going to be more and more teams that come to this place and try to sit in and look to break. So now it’s a whole different element and a different way of playing the game. Having said that, I think the guys gave themselves plenty of opportunities to find a goal, with so many corners and possession higher up the field. The game of soccer is tricky: sometimes the ball bounces in the right spot and you can knock it in, and sometimes it doesn’t. But I think overall, again, the effort was great, and a good performance to build on.
On what San Jose’s strategy was to shut down Colorado:
They put 11 guys behind the ball. Anytime you do that, it’s a whole different game. You’ve got to move the ball quicker, and I think [as] this is the first time we’ve experienced this, the focus moving forward is how do we move the ball quicker, knowing where you’re going to go before you get it. The longer you take on the ball the easier it is for a team like that just to rotate positions and be decent defensively, make you put balls in the box that at times aren’t the best option. Patience as well. For the most part, I think the guys handled the game well. It’s one of those games for set pieces as well, and having so many opportunities to put balls into dangerous spots, and not capitalizing. We had our chances. Every game is going to give you different opportunities, no two games look the same, but the effort was there today.
On whether San Jose’s play is dirty:
No. They play hard. That’s their M.O., and that’s who they are, that’s their identity. We were up for it, the majority of the second balls in the game we had a foot in, we controlled the tempo. Again, it’s that goal. If we nick one goal, then those guys have to open up, and we’re having a whole different conversation at the moment. But again, the game of soccer is a bit fickle, and how you get that goal in is the trickiest part of the game. That’s something that we’re going to continue exploring.
On if he’d seen replays of the incidents involving O’Neill and Gordon, and Watts and Jahn:
No. I just know that those two guys are the most honest players on the field, and unless something is awfully wrong, they would never go down. I only know my players, I don’t know anything else.
Dillon Powers, Colorado Rapids midfielder
On what his feelings are after the game:
It’s pretty disappointing. I felt like it turned into a physical battle, the conditions didn’t help too much. I think we were a little sloppy with our final pass.
On whether getting only one point is a missed opportunity:
Yeah, I think so. We always expect to get three points at home and we definitely could have got more out of this game.
On whether the tie affects the team’s mentality moving forward:
You know, we didn’t lose so I think there’s still stuff to build on. We’re going to look at the game. It’s never as bad as you think or never as good as you think. So I don’t think we feel like we lost momentum. We’ll be disappointed in this one but we’ll look forward to taking on another road opponent.
Dillon Serna, Colorado Rapids midfielder
On making his home debut:
Yeah, it was a great experience, finally being able to be here and play. My friends, family, my girlfriend’s family. And hearing the crowd chant my name that was just the icing on the cake. It was a great day.
On how many people he had at the game?
My girlfriend’s family, and my parents are divorced, so my whole dad’s side of my family, a little bit of my mom’s family, so maybe like 30 people.
On keeping his composure in front of friend and family:
Yeah, you can’t be too excited, you can’t be...you still are a little nervous but you have to play confident and play my game. That’s what I try to do all the time, just play as confident as possible and play my game and it’ll come naturally.
Drew Moor, Colorado Rapids defender
On whether San Jose played “dirty”:
I don’t think so. They’re a physical team. They got a lot of big guys. They do have the pieces in like a Shea Salinas and a Sam Cronin to find those big guys in dangerous positions. But I wouldn’t call San Jose dirty. I think they get, maybe, a bad rap and maybe a misconception because of the physical style that they play but I wouldn’t call any team in this league a dirty team.
On whether he saw the interaction between Shane O’Neill and Alan Gordon:
I did not see it but the way Shane reacted; he doesn’t go down for no reason. And even Gordon was basically saying ‘I didn’t mean it’ so obviously there was something there but I did not see it.
On how the Rapids attacked San Jose’s defense:
I thought we did well. I thought we maybe lacked just the final touch, the final pass, the final shot. I wouldn’t say we lacked creativity because we got ourselves into some good spots. We won a lot of set pieces, a lot of corner kicks. Other than their header at the beginning of the game, I felt very comfortable defensively. They did sit in and you could tell right away that that’s what their game plan was. And they’ve got a lot of big guys and you have to do something special to score when they’re sitting in like that. And we did some special things but we just couldn’t get that one.
On what it says about the team to get the shutout:
A zero-zero game is kind of a funny one because defensively you think: okay we got the shut out. But that’s one of those games where on a better night, maybe we win one, two, or three to zero. Or at least take away three points and we are disappointed not to [tonight]. And I think that’s a good sign in this locker room, that against a good San Jose team that had their backs against the wall you don’t concede. Not only do you not concede a goal but other than one chance you don’t concede many chances. So, you’ve got to move on to the next week is what you have to do.