Robert Warzycha- Head Coach, Columbus Crew
On getting a positive result on the road…
It's very tough to play here against Toronto. They have a lot of people watching them. They have great support. The last couple two or three years, they've been building a new team and I think they've got some good players. We saw that at the end of last year and even in the beginning of Champions League. Even though the results in the League haven't gone their way, overall they're playing well, especially here at home. We have to respect the home team and try to do our best. We tried to defend well be very organized. Maybe they were a little bit frustrated with that. We got what we wanted.
On responding after Milovan Mirosevic's saved penalty kick…
Psychologically, that's a huge setback because Toronto had two or three minutes in the first half that they put the ball in the box where anything could happen. We defended pretty well and then in the second half obviously it was a similar story, but we were able to get the goal.
On Eric Gehrig's performance and the depth of his squad…
He found out this morning that he was going to play. Obviously, he's a great professional and it's very encouraging that we have players like this on the bench that can step anytime and have a great performance.
Andy Gruenebaum- Goalkeeper, Columbus Crew
Tough place to come into and get a victory, are you happy on your end not having a whole lot of pressure, just a couple knocks from the Toronto strikers?
Yes, they are dangerous and a great team going forward, our plan was to get one and hang on. It is always a tough place to battle, the atmosphere is incredible, the fans are great they get right behind their team. It’s always a battle, getting a result here would be huge but getting a win is very satisfying.
Does it seem the back line in front of you is becoming a bit more comfortable with positioning themselves because it didn’t seem like you had too much to do as far as shots were concerned?
A lot of times game in and game out the guys in front of me are incredible, we stress team defending first and if we can shut the other team down we can create our own chances and I think we are good enough going forward to get one on the road and hold on.
The big picture is you get to see the whole team, are you happy with the movement and the teams progression through the season?
We can be smarter especially on the road and I think there is times where we were a little flustered and were in shambles a little bit. I think TFC took it to us and had a lot of possession, I think we could do a better job of keeping possession ourselves and playing smarter and keeping it in their end. But I am very happy with the way the season is going so far and hopefully it can continue.
A big change in the back line from last game, talk about the play of Eric Gherig?
I have watched him over the years, he is incredible he is one of the hardest workers you could have on your team and he had a great game. We have a couple guys that could fill in that spot and Eric did a great job today and it goes to show you how much depth we have on the team.
Aron Winter – Head Coach & Technical Director, Toronto FC
Overall thoughts on the match?
Disappointed. I think that we’ve played very well, we created a lot of chances. If you’re gonna compare it with Columbus Crew, they didn’t really have a real chance, but they scored. But I think the way we’re playing, yeah, we’re missing a little bit of sharpness with the opportunities we get. That makes a difference; the chances you receive, make the goals and then it’s also much easier to play. But still, I think that we deserve more. Much more.
Didn’t seem like team was fatigued. Was it about a lack of quality in the final third?
I don’t know if it’s a lack of quality but I think maybe we were missing the sharpness, really, to score. I’m repeating the same thing, we played very well. I can’t change it. The only thing is that we’ve played three games in the league and we have zero points. All the games we played well, and that’s the big difference.
Offensively, are you concerned?
I think if you watch all the games, at the highest level, what you create during the game, let’s say between six and 12 chances, it’s a lot. And if you’re going to compare it with other teams, we’re ahead. We’re creating at least between six and eight chances, it’s a lot. The only difference is that we have to be sharper at the moments you receive, because at those moments, you don’t get the whole game. Then you have to, at least, score.
How does the team develop that sharpness?
It’s coming. I’m not worried about it. We are demonstrating that we are playing very well, even today; not only today but also last week, we’re missing some players. We’re still playing well. We dominated the game, creating opportunities, and that’s, for me, a very good thing.
Where does the team go from here?
The most important thing in this league is… watch Kansas City last year, the first 10 games that they played, a lot of defeats. I’m not going to compare us to Kansas City, but what I want to say is, in this league, you can lose some games because at the end, everybody can win from each other, and the ranking is close to each other. But for me it’s important that we don’t panic. I saw a lot of good things and we have to continue on in the same way.
What happens if you keep playing well but you don’t get any sharper?
I don’t sense that we’re not going to get sharper. Of course it’s coming.
How can you be sure?
The most important thing for us is that you’re coming in the 20-yard box of the opponent, you’re creating a lot of chances, that’s important. Because when you’re not coming in the 20-yard box and you don’t create chances, then it’s difficult.
But you had only three shots on target this game.
No, more. It’s not only shots, you have to watch also the opportunities that come in the box, are missing, because statistics in MLS, it’s only the shots that count. But I’m looking more if you’re coming in the final entry, at least we’ve been there seven or eight times.
Did you think it was a penalty?
The penalty for them is no penalty, nothing for sure. For us, maybe you could give it. But for them, against us, Milos saves it, it was 100% no penalty. No penalty.
What is Aceval’s status?
He’s doing it well. But he was not fit to play this game. And I think Logan has done it well, except at the moment of the goal, he was at fault.
Will Aceval travel to Mexico?
Talk about the goal.
We had the ball before, moments before, lost the ball, then recovered the ball, then at the moment, instead of making the clearance, they scored.
The goal was against the flow, you’d taken it to them in the second half. That’s got to be more frustrating.
Yeah, we were taking a lot. They had difficulty with us, we put Ryan and Danny together and Silva a little bit close. And we were still waiting, because at the moment the feeling was that we were stronger to make the goal, and then at the moment they scored, yeah, it was disappointing. You could see it also with the team. But then they reacted well.
Is it just sharpness?
I think just the sharpness.
How important is the game in Montreal this week?
Every game is important. First of all we have to wait until tomorrow, how everybody’s coming back from the game, if everybody’s fit, then we’re going to prepare for Wednesday. But all the games, for me, are important. Not only in CONCACAF, but also in the league. And next week, of course, you have the derby in Montreal, Toronto. But first of all we have to think to another game.
Milos Kocic- Goalkeeper, Toronto FC
You did your end, but there must be frustration not being able to find the back of the net on the other side.
I think the reason for that is Columbus is probably the best team in the league in the air. I think we should maybe play more on the ground and stretch them out, because they’re not very quick in the back. Chad Marshall is not very quick but he’s probably the best player in the league in the air. It’s like we played to their advantages, we didn’t play to our advantages, on the ground, we kind of played in the air. I think that didn’t help us.
Is that frustrating, you guys generate so many set pieces and then they come down on one counter-attack and get the goal?
Yeah, exactly, that’s the game. They’re defending well and one little mistake in the middle – obviously it ended up as a big mistake. Just, the ball bounced their way on that goal. Can’t say much, I didn’t have an opportunity to save it, I wish I could. It’s a tough result going to Mexico. We lost crucial points at home.
Danny Koevermans- Forward, Toronto FC
General thoughts on the match…
We didn’t score, then you lose the game, it’s as simple as that.
Aron said it’s about sharpness, do you think that’s the case?
You know, it’s a word like sharpness, it’s a simple word. Like now, we don’t score, we’re not sharp. That’s not the thing. Everybody wants to score who’s in a position to score. I was there today, of course I want to score. So what’s the word “sharpness”? Maybe if it’s a block and it goes over the keeper, deflected, then it’s sharpness. It’s just unlucky today. Worst case scenario, we didn’t deserve this loss, but we have to keep our heads up.