Ola Kamara vs Toronto
USA Today

POST-MATCH QUOTES | #TORvCLB Leg 2 of the Conference Championship


What did you think of your team’s performance tonight?

I think we had good moments, we executed what we set out to do. Unfortunately some of the counter attacks were a little too rushed in the first half and we didn’t take our chances the best we could. Overall we weren’t put under that much pressure and we weren’t troubled that much. At the end of the day there was a couple chances for them and a couple for us but they were able to put one in and we weren’t.

There were some tactical back and forth with you starting 3 in the back and Greg changing things at half. How do you think that went for you and did that alter things in the 2nd half?

Not really as we were still able to release our wing backs to their fullbacks and when they released we were able to match up so it didn’t really change much. Then the goal comes from a play we should make and not from an X & O play but from a mistake from us. Overall I’m proud of the guys and the way we played.

You mentioned that one moment, is that just Giovinco, Vazquez, Altidore all making a play there that maybe in a regular season game you just live with but in such a big moment it’s hard to take.

I think we did a great job with those guys, especially Giovinco. I think we did an excellent job keeping him quiet. The one big moment, the one little slip up they took advantage of and that’s what this game is about. It’s about the small moments and give them credit for that. We knew Eastern Conference Finals would come down to a moment like that and unfortunately, they made the right play and we made the wrong play.


The goal was to be tied or be ahead at the half. To get to that point but to not have the 2nd half go as you wanted how disappointed is it at this moment and how close were you guys to what you were hoping to achieve.   

We were inches away from scoring a goal. We gave up one chance and they score. Zack makes a huge save on that penalty. It’s a game of inches, ball doesn’t go under Ola’s foot and we win that game. The way we competed was incredible.

You mentioned the spirit of the guys and there were a few occasions where you guys were one pass away. Do you feel like that was all there for you tonight?

I thought we played a good game. It was one chance and they have quality so they finished the chance. We had chances, we didn’t finish. That’s the game, it’s cruel but that’s how it goes. They’re a good team and they’ll punish you.

A disappointing way to end it but your first season as captain is it something you can be proud of how the team finished this year?

There’s lots of positives to take away and a lot of things we can improve on. I think it’s good that we’re disappointed. It shows how much belief we had, how the season had progressed as a group and our camaraderie, our spirit and our faith in each other continued to grow until the last minute. It’s not an ending point for us, we’ve got a lot of new guys this year and I think it’s just going to improve.  


A game like tonight, do you leave it thinking it was that close?

Yeah I think the whole series was. One goal separated us. They had the PK but you have to finish your chances and they were able to. I thought the whole series was pretty even.

Greg Vanney touched on you guys being able to take their forwards out of the game. How effective do you feel you guys were on defense?

I thought Lalas (Abubakar) & Jon (Jonathan Mensah) were beasts tonight. Anytime you’ve got to deal with Jozy (Altidore) & Seba (Sebastian Giovinco) it’s a tall task but those guys have been playing well all year. We gave them one chance and they were able to finish it. That’s why Jozy is who he is. I couldn’t be more proud of this team and the way we responded. We came into a hostile environment and we pushed them to the limit.

That goal came from Jozy, Seba and Vazquez. 3 of their stars, is that why Toronto has been able to do what they’ve done the last few years.

Those guys are talented. Vazquez on any other team is a DP. That guy’s special he completely changed the team. As good as they were last year you had someone like him to the team and it takes it to another level. You give them time and space like that and they’re going to hurt you.


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