POST-GAME QUOTES: Fire down Sporting KC 1-0

Klopas, Pappa, Johnson, Rolfe talk 1-0 victory over Sporting

SKC Away Quotes

Photo Credit: 
Getty Images

 

Quote Sheet
Chicago Fire 1 – 0 Sporting Kansas City
LIVESTRONG Sporting Park – June 29, 2012

Chicago Fire Head Coach Frank Klopas

Opening comments on tonight’s match…

Obviously from our side it was a very great win. We knew it was going to be a very difficult match. Sporting KC is an excellent team. It’s very difficult to come in here and get points so we felt that they were going to come out and press us. I thought in the first half we had some good moments but I thought that with the ball we weren’t very good. We needed to gain a little bit more possession. I felt that the players looked a little bit fatigued. Obviously we scored a great goal in the second half and we had some other good moments in the game. Obviously they pushed forward and they pressed the game to get the tying goal, and in the end you need an excellent performance from players in order to go on the road. They had some close calls and for the last five minutes all I could do was pray. It was just a great victory.

On Dan Gargan’s play…

Arne Friedrich coming back obviously helped a lot. I thought that some of his defending was fantastic today. He got a little bit tired in the end but I wanted to go into the game with some experienced players. In a place like this, like I said, Sporting KC is an excellent team and we needed Dan’s experience even though he normally doesn’t play on that side. But his ability now and experience to help on the defensive side helped. They went against some great forwards tonight so I was just relying a lot more on his experience.”

On Marco Pappa…

They push numbers forward, we talked a little bit about that in the game in that the transition and the ability to play away from the pressure would help. We wanted to push forward to try to win numbers right away. If the first pass was played away from pressure we would find space. I think the ball just came out and we had numbers forward and then we had transition numbers up 3v2. The timing of the passes and the runs and their decision-making and the quality finish aren’t easy against a quality keeper like (Jimmy) Nielsen. We handled the break very well. We talked about the ability in the transitions to catch them and that was one opportunity that we capitalized on.”

On Chris Rolfe…

He’s been coming on every game and had an impact in every game. Even with the heat I felt that he was very strong. I was a little concerned towards the end because he had a knock back in his ankle so we have to assess that. He’s a key player for us, it’s just technically you can see that he’s a very good player. He has the ability now to beat players off the dribble and create opportunities for himself and others anytime he gets around the goal. He’s just a great finisher, he has great feet. He’s a very good addition for us so hopefully there are no more setbacks.”

Chicago Fire forward Chris Rolfe

Comments on the game…

It felt great. I have been working towards this for a few months now. It’s nice to get a win on the road against such a good team. It’s a great feeling.

On getting the assist…

It was a great counter attack by us. Marco had good composure. Dom (Oduro) spread the defense for us a little bit and Marco (Pappa) put me in at the right time and nobody picked him up so I played it back to him and it ended up looking pretty easy. It was a good goal.

On the goal…

Marco (Pappa) is a great player and you said it, he makes a lot of things look easy that other guys can’t even do. Every decision that he made on that counter attack was the right one and like I said it looked easy but that play is not easy to do.

On three straight victories...

Anytime you can win back-to-back games in this League, it’s a good feat. It is such a competitive league so that doesn’t happen too often for most teams. For us to do that now to start the summer when we really have to grind through the middle of the season, that’s really big for us.

Chicago Fire goalkeeper Sean Johnson

On ending the game with several big saves…

I think you just try to do your job and make the saves necessary to keep your team in the game. Tonight was one of those nights where I had to make a few more saves than normal but for the first 90 minutes I thought the guys were doing a wonderful job. You know, it was hot out there and under the tough conditions we were still able to stick to our game plan. Hats off to KC. They didn’t stop for a full 90 minutes. They are a fit team and they kept coming and we were able to get the job done.

On the game plan…

Sticking to what we do best. It was hot so we had to move the ball a lot, staying organized and not conceding anything down the middle. We handled crosses well. On set pieces, we were good on the night. There is always room for improvement, but we’ll enjoy this and get back to work. We have a quick turnaround game on Tuesday against a good team in another hot place. We have to refocus now and get back to work.

Shuffling the back line…

I think at any point in time we have to be able to adjust where guys can step in and do a job. Like you saw tonight, Hunter (Jumper) came on and we slid (Daniel) Gargan out to the right. At any point in time we have guys that can play anywhere on the field. That says a lot for our team especially our will and determination to win games. We have a lot of heart and we showed that tonight.

On corner kicks…

We didn’t give up any goals. There were a few times they got in dangerous spots and we have to get back and work on some things but on the night we did what’s necessary to get three points and the shutout is a plus as well. First and foremost three points which we needed against a team in our conference and the shutout for the team. I think we’ve been due for a long time and the guys deserve it. They have worked their balls off for countless games now, finally we get what we deserve.

Chicago Fire forward Marco Pappa

On the team’s chances…

We didn’t have many chances tonight. I think we only had one or two chances and we scored one. We are happy for the result and looking forward to the next game.

On the goal…

I tried to make the right decision to do the right play and I am happy that I was able to score the goal after receiving the pass.

On playing with Guatemala…

After that kind of game you pick up your confidence. You try to come back and do what it best for the team once you get on the field. I feel tired from so many games but still you try and do your best.