Robert Warzycha, Columbus Crew Head Coach
On the first half of the match:
Obviously it’s tough to play here, there’s no question. They have a good team, they haven’t changed too many players and don’t have too many new players. But they kept the core so we always know it’s going to be a tough game here. We basically limited them to very few chances in the first half. We were dangerous ourselves in the first half. The breakaway that we gave Cummings that came from us, and obviously 44 minutes without letting a goal [and then letting one in] that’s like the ABC’s of soccer and how not to do it. So it’s disappointing.
On giving up the first goal before halftime:
Obviously that’s the worst time you can give up a goal when you’re playing away from home. And then that’s a little bit unfortunate. But the second half wasn’t any different. We couldn’t get a rhythm. I think we got a rhythm at the end for a little bit, maybe for 10 or 15 minutes. We could have scored a goal but Pickens made a great save.
On the miscommunication between the goalie and defense that led to a goal:
I think unfortunately that’s what happened last year during the playoffs. We had the ball over there and somehow they had a corner and then they score. That’s part of the game. I think there was a shout from the defenders to let it go but he didn’t, he thought it was an easy catch so it happened and led to a goal.
On losing Dilly Duka early:
Dilly [Duka] is a good player and probably has a little more experienced [than the other guys]. Obviously using a sub in the first minute is not the best.
On whether he expected Eddie Gaven to play the full 90:
Eddie [Gaven] is basically a fitness freak. He can go for 90 minutes. The question with these guys is whether they’re sharp or not. Because you can go 90 minutes without being sharp and I think maybe Eddie had a problem with his ankle so he wasn’t the sharpest today.
On struggling to keep possession:
We switched to two forwards later on and that helps a lot because the wind picked up a little bit in the second half and we couldn’t get the ball as much in behind. They did a good job squeezing the field. To be honest with you we tried to play too casual. Sometimes we have to release the pressure where we were trying to keep the ball even in situations that we shouldn’t. They were winning the ball in the middle of the field and we weren’t pressuring it.
Ethan Finlay, Columbus Crew Midfielder
On giving up a goal right before halftime:
It was really tough. They had a good majority of the play in the first, but we kind of had taken it all in and were hoping to come out with a good second half, so it definitely hurt us. Coming into the locker room, we felt kind of deflated in all honesty. We knew we were still in it and there were 45 minutes left in [the game]. We weren’t [thinking] “oh the game is over” but it definitely took a little wind out of our sails. Because I felt like we did have some good opportunities in the first half and in the second half we were able to keep the ball a little bit even going against the wind. So it was definitely a deflating goal.
On what positives they can take away from the game:
There are a couple of things. I think that for me, it was my first time on the field. That’s over with. So I’m beyond that. I thought we had some good combinations. We went up to two forwards, we actually looked a little more dangerous because we had more guys up there to be able to connect with. For me, getting shots on goal was important and I had that one that made Pickens make the save. But I think we have to continue to test goalkeepers. For me out wide, I was just talking to Eddie [Gaven], we didn’t get that many crosses into the box today, we didn’t really get around the end. So I think as wingers we kind of dropped the ball on that today and that’s something we have to improve on and get better at. That’s our game, we want to beat teams around the edges and we didn’t quite do that today and that’s kind of why the result is the way it is.
Oscar Pareja, Colorado Rapids Head Coach
On his first match as a head coach:
First, the coaching staff has done a tremendous job with this group, preparing them for the start of the season so kudos to them, and obviously to the players. They made things very easy for us as coaches when they put in hard work and effort and commitment and we always will be waiting for more and demanding more, but what I saw on the ground today was great. The effort was outstanding.
On having possession and being creative:
I thought for the most part of the game we had the ball. We have developed a culture on the team that we’re uncomfortable when we’re not on the ball…. The reaction was great, the pressure was great and we got the ball back and kept it. It was great for them and I would like to highlight that.
On Drew Moor’s play:
Outstanding. Drew was enormous today. He came through and scored a goal… but also for being that solid in the back with Marvell and the other guys. When you have these kinds of players in the back, you can sleep well and Drew did great.
On the defenders pushing so far forward:
Kosuke [Kimura] in the first half especially had a lot [of chances], in the second half he had two or three chances when he was even in front of the goal. They understand now that our game is with fullbacks going. They need to be part of the attack and they have to have the energy to get back and be part of our defensive force. But the guys who can give us width and who can be all the time an outlet for us, that was Kosuke and Luis today. Especially Kosuke.
On Matt Pickens’ performance:
Huge. Matt kept us in the game and winning the game, with two saves. Incredible. He really does his job and Matt is a player who’s transmitting leadership and was great on those plays.
Quincy Amarikwa, Colorado Rapids Forward
On his goal:
Well, I took a horrible touch, and then I was like, ‘well I better make the most of this.’ I saw the defender overcommit so I put it to the outside of him and saw the keeper in the middle, and I was trying to bend power back across the box and it happened to come off my foot right…. The touch in the beginning wasn’t intentional, but making up for it was.
On the first game under Coach Pareja:
I think we came out intense and we wanted to show that we’re still a solid team with a solid core. We’re here to make a playoff run and get deep in the playoffs. I think we are going to get better at playing the style of soccer that we want to play. I just think it’s a matter of time before we get to where we want to be but this was a good step in going towards that direction.
On playing with Jaime Castrillón in the middle:
The way [Pareja] changed it is now we have a high attacking midfielder and not so much a player that’s looking to hold the ball up and lay it back or be deep and distribute. He’s trying to be the playmaker and I think as time goes on we’ll better connect with him. There’s a few times I think we weren’t finding him as we should because we’re used to the two midfielders but that’s something that will come with time. You saw as we found him and connected, we were getting in behind and Omar was getting the ball wide and we were really dangerous in the final third.
Tony Cascio, Colorado Rapids forward
On starting in his first professional match:
There were a lot of nerves. I was excited coming in as a rookie and getting my first start. Experience is always good. I got the first game out of the way so hopefully it will just increase from here.
On advice he received from other players:
All of them came up to me and told me to relax and go out there and have some fun. Just enjoy it and soak every second of it in.
On the difference between MLS and college play:
A play would close down real fast and everything was a lot faster. With the nerves and everything going on it was tough.
On advice he received from coaches:
They just said go out there and play your game. Just have fun, it’s just another game don’t treat it like anything else. Just go out there and do your thing and things will come.