Federico Higuain
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Post-match quotes: Crew SC at Dynamo


On what didn't click for his club during the match

Well I think that was just it, the finishing touch. We did a lot good in the game and unfortunately scoring wasn’t one of those things. Because I think overall, I’m pretty pleased with the performance. But one moment of lax defending, and then not being able to finish off some chances — and to credit their goalkeeper, he did a really good job.

On Kei Kamara's performance

That’s why he’s here, because he can do those things. We have to look sharp as a team, we have to get him more service earlier in the game, get him involved earlier. But this is one of those games you’re going to look back and say we did a lot of good in it and it’s unfortunate we didn’t get something out of it.

On the implementation of his gameplan

I thought it was ok, I think we still need to get sharper, especially on the wings. I thought early in the game we didn’t get enough service, didn’t get enough crosses in, didn’t get enough penetration deep into their defending third. So I would have liked to see more of that.

On tactical changes in the second half

I think we wanted to focus on getting the ball wide and moving the ball quicker. I think in the first half, the tempo was way too slow. A team like us, if you don’t move the ball quickly, we’re easy to defend. But when we do, it’s very hard to defend against us and I think you saw some of that in the second half.

On the differences in the second half compared to the first
I think we came out strong in the second half. Our goal was to come out of the first half zero-zero, and in the second half we were quicker.
On positives the club can take from the match
Tonight was our first game and we did alright, we did some things pretty well and we didn’t do some other things that well. Going into next week’s game, we have to take advantage of our chances because that can happen again.
On the match overall
I think we did well. It was one situation where they were able to score and they took advantage of it. Overall, I think they found it very difficult to play through us. I think in the end, you know, we had a lot of opportunities to score but the ball just wouldn’t fall for us, and we may feel hard done by the result, but that’s soccer sometimes and we have to keep our heads high. We now have two home games ahead and we have to get points from those games now.
On the goal
I can only tell you how I have seen it in the game and it seemed to me that we gave the ball away and then they came down our left side and I think he (Kofi Sarkodie) was able to dribble through two or three of our players and crossed it low in the box, then I couldn’t see because the game was behind me and all I could see was the ball in the net. It was a good play by them, but obviously it was the only real chance they had in the game and you feel hard done as a defender if you get beat by those.


On starting his Dynamo tenure

I don’t think we could have asked for any more than what we got. I think there was really a lot of quality on the ball at times, I still think there’s room for improvement in that area. But there’s no doubt we scored a wonderful goal, a goal fit to any game. We had numerous chances as well. Tyler [Deric] made some big, outstanding saves which I’ve come to expect having worked with him as well. That’s why you have a top goalkeeper in your club. Having said that, I think the lads defended really well against a really good side. I mean, a side that in the second half of last season was probably as good as anybody in the league, made the playoffs. And they play very exciting. I thought the game was end-to-end, I think anyone that watched the game as a neutral watched a lovely game. It was a great advert for the league, great advert for Houston Dynamo. I’m absolutely delighted.

On Kofi Sarkodie playing through a cut on his head

Listen, this one goes without saying. I’ve said before: when you watch players, and you admire them from watching them. But when you get to work with them on a daily basis, I think you see their merits. It’s not only of their ability, but you see the merits of the actual individual person and Kofi has been outstanding from day one. I think he went through three jerseys, three pair of shorts tonight but there was no way the lad was coming off the pitch. To be bandaged up twice and even on to a wonderful piece of skill when he’s gone up to the goal.

On his first win

It’s always nice to win. I’ve got to say, my thoughts had nothing to do with me individually. I’ve been about the game long enough to know that you win and lose and you’re drawing matches. The important thing to me is for my group, for our fans, that we win games. I’ve said before, i’ve been very fortunate to have a career in the game, so I don’t have a worry about my individual needs. What I worry about is the collective needs of my team, my group, my club and my support, and that was the thing for me. If you had looked at me earlier in the game I would have checked my watch anyway because that’s what you do, you want to know exactly where you are in the game, but having said that of course it’s nice to get up and running. We worked ever so hard in the preseason. I still believe there’s more to come from us as we move forward. 


On Tyler Deric’s performance

Tonight, he was fantastic. Made some game-saving saves in there, so he was great. It’s a credit to him, he’s had the right mindset, still come in and worked hard. It doesn’t surprise me he made some of those saves, and hopefully he can keep it going.

On his team's struggles to get on the ball at certain points throughout the match

Making the simple pass. I think there were times we were trying to do too much when an easy pass was on. It’s still a bit of a work in progress. It’s the first game of the season, we still have a long ways to go. You’re not always going to play pretty, but it’s ‘can you win the game?’ and tonight we won that game. We’ve still got plenty of work in progress and there’s things we need to work on, but getting our foot on the ball is definitely something we need to do a little bit better job of. I think there were times where we just gave the ball away a little too soon.

On getting Owen Coyle's first win

To be totally honest it just felt good to get the first win of the year. Feels good to get it for him, feels good to get it for the group. You want to get the year started off in a great way and tonight we were able to do that. We got the three points, we showed ourselves a little bit. Not the prettiest game, but we came away with a victory and that’s what we did tonight. So hopefully we can continue to get better and continue to put the work and continue to progress throughout the year. 


On the match

It was a great way to start the season, a one-nill win. It’s always great to get a shutout. Giles [Barnes] had a great goal, it was a great build-up to the play. Give credit to Columbus, they’re a great team, they pass and move the ball really well, they have a great philosophy with their head coach. But you know, we come in at halftime and we know there’s a little bit more for us there and thankfully we got the goal.

On Kofi Sarkodie playing through his injury

Kofi’s a warrior. I’ve been playing with Kofi for about five years now and, give all the credit to him, he’s a real professional. We see him every day, working hard, staying after practice and it’s going to take more than a little blood to get Kofi off the field.

On making big saves throughout the match

For any goalkeeper that was in there for the Dynamo, whether it be Joe [Willis] or Mike [Lisch], we expect a lot from the goalkeeper position. We just go out there and try our best.

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