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Notes & Quotes: New York City FC 2 - 1 San Jose Earthquakes

September 14, 2019 - Major League Soccer (MLS) - New York City FC News Release


New York City FC 2 - 1 San Jose Earthquakes

Saturday, September 14, 2019

2019 MLS Regular Season - Game 30

Attendance: 20,679


New York City FC: Sean Johnson; Anton Tinnerholm, Maxime Chanot, Alex Callens, Ronald Matarrita; Keaton Parks (77' Tony Rocha), Alex Ring, Ismael Tajouri-Shradi (61' Ebenezer Ofori), Gary Mackay-Steven (84' Sebastien Ibeagha); Valentin Castellanos, Alexandru Mitriță

SUBS UNUSED: Brad Stuver, Eric Miller, Ben Sweat, Jesus Medina

San Jose Earthquakes: Daniel Vega; Tommy Thompson (69' Danny Hoesen), Guram Kashia, Florian Jungwirth, Marcos Lopez (46' Shea Salinas); Jackson Yueill, Judson (69' Andres Rios), Cristian Espinoza, Magnus Eriksson, Valeri Qazaishvili; Chris Wondolowski

SUBS UNUSED: Andrew Tarbell, Harold Cummings, Anibal Godoy, Carlos Fierro


20' - SJ - Chris Wondolowski (Assisted by: Valeri Qazaishvili, Magnus Eriksson)

40' - NYC - Keaton Parks

43' - NYC - Alexandru Mitriță (Assisted by: Ismael Tajouri-Shradi)


47' - SJ - Shea Salinas (YC - Unsporting Behavior)

55' - NYC - Alex Callens (YC - Unsporting Behavior)

76' - SJ - Magnus Eriksson (YC - Unsporting Behavior)

90'+4' - NYC - Sean Johnson (YC - Time Wasting)


New York City FC Head Coach Doménec Torrent

On putting pressure on the rest of the Eastern Conference with another win...

"The goal is always to win the next game. This is how they are focused. If not, if you lose the focus, you are in trouble 100%. It is very important to us because right now, Philadelphia for example, and Atlanta has to play. We were able to win the game and it is not bad winning a few games, I want to win those three games, but three games, seven points is not bad...At the moment, I can say that we are really tired. We have five days to recover, to rest well, we will try like I said after the last game, we will try to finish in the first position. We will be busy 100%, because the opponent is Philadelphia and Atlanta has quality, but we are a good team as well. Our focus is not to put pressure, forget about it, it is the next game. The next game is Dallas, we have to be focused in Dallas and after that I know how difficult it will be to play against Atlanta because we have a long trip in two days, just two days. But the focus is Dallas, the next game....It is better for our team because we have just four games to finish the regular season, and we will try to finish in the first position.

On Keaton Parks getting his first MLS goal...

"It is amazing, he deserved it because he could have scored before that against Red Bulls, against New England, but he has gone about the midfield. For me it is important for when they keep the ball, he has quality. Even one v one, when that happens and they decide to defend man-man, he is very important to us to have a player like Keaton. Keaton played amazing, we changed Keaton because in the last 20 minutes he was having discomfort and he told me just five minutes and he needed a change because he had some discomfort. He is not injured, but it is very important this player to us. He has another quality, for example right now Keaton is able to keep the ball and save the ball. When we need Keaton to play like a #10, #8, he can play, he can play the #6. It is very important because I have said many times that he has improved a lot. I remember, it is not for me, it is for him, it's not for Dome that he improved a lot. I remember when he arrived here, I know how important it is for every single player to play with confidence. He had focus just when he had the ball, and right now he helps our team even when we don't have the ball. He covers a lot of balls. He is an amazing player right now for our team.

On getting three points without Maxi Moralez...

"I agree with you, it is very important to us, for our confidence, for our future. Everyone knows how important Maxi is for us, but everybody is important for us. I prefer to play with him, of course, but that does mean the team is growing up. It is better, right now it is getting better every single day. The confidence is much better because, you know, I agree with you, we had some problems with players being out. He is an important player, but everybody right now is important. We are so close, when that happens, I know we are tired, but I say no tiredness, forget about it. It is 90 minutes. It is the same for San Jose. But we need to focus on the next game, without Héber, without, I don't know, without Maxi, and that means the confidence is much better within the team right now.

New York City FC Midfielder Keaton Parks

Thoughts on today's win...

"I'm really happy today, to contribute and obviously get the win. San Jose has been in good form recently, so it wasn't an easy game. It feels really good to be able to contribute, to score my first goal, and get the win today."

On finally scoring his first MLS goal after so many close opportunities...

"Yeah, of course. I get a lot of jokes around the locker room that I haven't scored yet. I've had chances and some of them pretty easy. I missed a lot of chances, but it feels really good now and they can't talk trash anymore."

On the process of leading up to the goal...

"I was trying to support the ball if there was a rebound. I was really counting on him [Gary Mackay-Steven] to score the goal after I gave him back the whole run. He [Mackay-Steven] had a good attempt on target and the keeper made a great save. Luckily, I was still there for the rebound and I got my chance on goal. I was just there for any rebounds, any bouncing balls in the box."

What today's win means for other clubs playing tonight...

"It puts a little pressure on them and I think most of the guys on this team will be watching those games just to keep up with it. We're really just focused on doing our part. Whether they win or not, were going into our next game wanting to win. We'll be watching, but it doesn't really affect us that much."

Thoughts on the physical and mental toughness needed for the final three games of the regular season...

"The physical part is tough. I think this week will be really important going in because we have FC Dallas on Sunday and Atlanta next Wednesday so that will be another two quick games. I think this week will be very important for us going into this last stretch of games and we're just going to take it one game at a time."

New York City FC Forward Ismael Tajouri-Shradi

On how it feels to start after after so long...

"It's been a long time that I haven't played in the starting eleven. It was a tough road for me, it was a hard time, but I'm so happy to be back. I was also excited. I just want to play and help the team and I think this was a very important point for us."

On the assist...

"It was our plan, we know that San Jose plays man to man and wherever you go they go with you. We know if we're one against one I think it will be a very good chance and if you dribble your player, we will have so much space. I tried this and I had so much space and I just give the ball to Mitriță and he scored the goal."

On his fitness levels after the being out an extended period of time...

"Yea, it was important for me to start step by step. First game was twelve minutes, second game coach put me in thirty minutes. I felt after thirty minutes I was a little bit out of shape like I played 90 minutes but its normal. Today I started and played 60 minutes. It was perfect for me. We spoke before and we said yea that 60 minutes would be good for me to get back in shape."

New York City FC Midfielder Alex Ring

On having two matches in four days...

"We played almost two days ago. I was at home trying to put my body back together. The MLS schedule sometimes is a little crazy. Big win. We want to win every game we play. Today was definitely important."

On Keaton Parks scoring his first MLS goal...

"He deserved it. He has been playing very well especially today the way San Jose plays man to man. He took care of us. I am very happy for Keaton."

On playing without Maxi Moralez...

"Everyone knows, the stats speak for themselves, what he means to us especially creatively. We don't have a player who is very much like him who can get the ball deep and pick up the right passes and still take on the opponent. We have different players, of course but we miss him. I think the team did a fantastic job in the last two games picking up for his absence."

New York City FC Forward Gary Mackay-Steven

How did you guys approach San Jose's high press...

"We just had to focus on, like you say, our own battles and our individual battles and get the first balls and try to make movement and space for our teammates. They're a difficult team to play and we went behind. But the team showed great character, as it has been doing over the last few games and thankfully, we got the win and it was a good job by all the boys."

What changes at the end of the first half...

"Just believing in ourselves really. Like you said, running off the ball. I think on our second goal, Ismael [Tajouri-Shradi] cut inside just created space and he just played Alexandu Mitriță through who's had a great finish. But we're creating chances. We just have to take them and keep them out of the back. But overall, I felt we deserved the three points, definitely."

What players are you starting to connect with...

"I mean, all of them. They've all been great. I mean, even the Spanish boys. I mean, Maxi Moralez.... Ringy the captain always leads by example on and off the field. And like me, he's come from Europe. And now he's settled down and become a real leader. So, he's someone who takes me aside and leads by example. But I mean, the boys, every single one of them has been so good with me on and off the park and I thank them for that."

San Jose Quake Head Coach Matias Almeyda

On his general thoughts of the game...

"I feel positive. We played against the team, that in my understanding, plays the best soccer with a well-defined style. A young team with dynamic [players] and mobility. And they try to play the soccer that I personally like. That makes me think that our team was at the same level. We have a few games left, we have to keep going with this system and our mentality. Keeping in mind the opponent we played against, it was a competitive game and maybe a draw would have been more fair. But results aren't about justice, it's more taking advantage of the opponent's mistakes or getting the benefits out of a team whether is collective or individual."

On if there is a sense of urgency with the playoffs around the corner...

"No, when I joined this team they had a complicated year. The first thing we wanted to achieve was maintaining a style of play and have the team be competitive. Now the team is competitive, we have four games left against difficult opponents. And we'll insist up until the last minute as long as the math allows it."

San Jose Earthquakes Forward Chris Wondolowski

Thoughts on the game ...

"NYCFC is at the top of the Eastern Conference for a reason. They are a solid team and play a nice style, they played well. We had a five minute lapse and got punished in the first half ... we need to start learning from our mistakes."

On the five minute lapse in the first half...

"We have to track back. We have to get back fast, get behind the ball. We need to cut in, granted it was a great pass, especially for the second goal ... it was a good goal. At the same time we had a hold of the game, the first 30 we came out and played well, we executed our game plan, we need to take a little bit more control."

On sense of urgency with playoffs coming up...

"We had a nice calmness about us and calmness about how we wanted to play but also we have the urgency of the way we play. The urgent pressing style, that wants us to keep going and keep pushing and that's a big difference.

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