COLUMBUS CREW SPORTING DIRECTOR AND HEAD COACH GREGG BERHALTER
On overall performance:
You end up being really proud of them on how they fought back and how they were really determined to get something out of the game but the other side is that we were in that position in the first place. We were on the sideline celebrating a tying goal when we should have been in a different position. In one way the effort the guys put in was exceptional to get back into the game and they kept going. I’m a little bit disappointed with the urgency in the first half. We were playing at home and we really wanted to stampede our game on the opponent and really take it to them and we missed that. I thought it was better in the second half.
On bringing in Bedell and Finlay:
I was looking for a tying goal. We have been communicating all weekend about the plan to rotate guys through so it wasn’t a surprise that we had a different look today and we had different guys in. The idea was to rest Ethan and get him ready for Saturday. We needed him though. He is making plays right now and he is vital to this group. We needed him: he came in and made a play.
On Dominic Oduro:
The second half is where Dom was more active, more urgent and more direct. That is what we look for in him and that is his game. His game is that explosiveness. I think the second half I am pleased with his performance.
On Bernardo Anor:
Bernie was close to my Man of the Match in terms of what he did at leftback having never played there before. He just kept going and he made a couple great moves and had a couple of great crosses. He really put a lot of pressure on them in the second half.
On weather and midweek match:
I wouldn’t say the weather, the weather was perfect. If you ask any soccer player this is the weather that you want to play in. It is not too warm and not too wet which is soccer weather. I would say that midweek had something to do with it and this team doesn’t have full confidence right now. We’re lacking a little bit of confidence and you see when they throw all of that out of the window and they just play, you see how good that group is.
On Higuain’s injury:
I didn’t see what happened. He made a through run and came up holding his hamstring and had to take him out. I would expect him to be out on Saturday. If it wasn’t serious there’s no way we would get him off that field. This guy loves to be on the field. My guess is Saturday there’s no chance of him playing.
COLUMBUS CREW GOALKEEPER STEVE CLARK
On confidence level of the Crew:
Yeah, in the second half I thought we were very confident on the ball. That was the message at half time: we are a good team so let’s just play. And we did that, we had a lot of chances and you can’t just kick short of the win. But the one point was fantastic.
On continuing the confidence level of the Crew:
Absolutely, we are still a young team. We have been together for about six months, so right now it is about building that team chemistry and confidence that you are speaking about and we can take a lot of confidence out of digging for another point late. We have done that a bunch of times so we are going to turn the corner soon.
On reaching RSL standards of playing:
Like you said, they chance whoever they want and they seem to get results. So you have to tip your hat to that. That is who we want we want to be as a team. They have been together seven years and we have six months. To dig a point out from that, I think is important and we can build on that confidence and go into D.C. a more confident team than we were in the first half today.
COLUMBUS CREW MIDFIELDER ETHAN FINLAY
On his goal:
It feels good but obviously frustrating with the results. It’s a team game there and obviously we tried to do our best to get the win tonight for our team. I think we are all frustrated here. Despite the goal, we didn’t get a win.
On how he scored tonight:
I have been working on that movement a lot. And I saw that he wasn’t really looking, he kind of had his body toward the ball. And Ben got the ball, picked his head up. He has been playing fantastic. He played a great ball and Attinella kind of came up pretty quick. I just thought I’ve seen people do it many times, let me give it a shot.
On team mindset:
It is very important I think. When you try to break a game down too much and you try to focus on the other team, you lose sight of what you have to do and what your jobs are. I think (Coach) stressed that but maybe tonight we didn’t play free enough. Obviously with losing in that first half, you lose a lot of creativity. Then Ben came in and did a great job. Attinella made some great saves so you got to give him some credit. I think that there may have been one or two shots on the goal there, and then you know they scored.
REAL SALT LAKE HEAD COACH JEFF CASSAR
On tonight’s game:
I think at the end of the day we are going to leave here feeling fine with a point. We could have had three. Our goalkeeper played fantastic, so it was probably the correct result at the end of the day. If we could do a better job in the last five minutes of games we would have a much better record.
On dealing with fatigue:
It’s not easy, the fields wet, it’s heavy. The guys put forth a lot of effort. They covered a lot of ground, but obviously, when a couple of our players were cramping up, it’s tough conditions. I was really proud of how the guys fought through, and especially being in a different formation and not being totally comfortable with it. So I was pleased.
On his team’s formation:
Some good, some bad. When we possessed and connected a few passes it was good, but if we gave the ball away early, we kind of left ourselves exposed a little bit. We talked at halftime about making sure we are completing the first pass positive. I thought we did a better job of that. Columbus has dangerous players on the counter attack and we got caught.
On tonight’s lineup:
We were able to rest typically three starters from our back line, which is important. Mulholland and Sandoval got a rest. Joao Plata is going to be putting himself into the mix, so that’s a good thing for us. We had to be mindful of it.
On avoiding losing back-to-back games:
We could have won this game, so that was positive. The guys felt like they could have won this game. We will take a look at the video and see what we can do better. Again, I am really proud of the guys.
REAL SALT LAKE MIDFIELDER LUIS GIL
On his goal:
Yeah definitely, being patient. I saw it, and I just pounced on it. Had some patience and just saw it coming. You sniff those out. It was a good strike and a good follow up as well.
On his first start in a while:
It felt good. I still feel like I was a step or two slow. It took me a while to get into it. Like you said, it’s been over a month since I got some big minutes like that. It’s good to get the goal but now we have to look forward to the next game.
On 4-5-1 formation:
It was different. We obviously haven’t played that formation yet. We put guys in there to make it difficult for them to play through us. I felt like it gave me more of a chance to get forward.
REAL SALT LAKE DEFENDER RICH BALCHAN
On coming back to Columbus:
It was incredible. I have so much respect for this organization and every player on the team. I was happy to see the guys from my draft class. I have so much respect for them. I thought both teams fought really hard. We both play a great style of soccer, possess the ball and move it around and stuff. So it was a great match, and I’m just proud of everyone involved.
On current Columbus squad:
Yeah, they have a good team. They have a great team. I’m happy for them, they haven’t been getting results lately but I think they are playing good soccer. Yeah, I have respect for them.
On Jeff Attinella:
Yeah, Jeff was incredible. I remember Justin Meram had a nice bending shot to the back post. It was one of those things where it almost seemed like it was in slow motion. I saw him get it with his left paw. It was just incredible. I have so much respect for him. He has been making big saves and stuff and stepping up every time he has been called on. I’m so happy for him and everyone involved.