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Post-match quotes: Crew SC at Philadelphia Union

SPORTING DIRECTOR AND HEAD COACH GREGG BERHALTER

On if part of the game plan was creating space for Harrison Afful on the right wing
The game plan was to switch the field. And as we switched field, spaces are going to open up from left to right. The left was open as well, but sometimes we just didn’t exploit it enough. The idea was to switch the field, and we did that well in the first half, especially.

On how big of a difference Kamara makes
He is a fantastic player; we talk a lot about him, rightfully so. Last week, I think the team wasn’t prepared in the right way. This week, we were. We understood about how to break down a compact opponent and we really focused on that. Kei is a great finisher and we want to get him the ball in the box, and he proved again how valuable he is to the team.

On what Crew SC did differently from the first half to the second half 
We lost too many easy balls. There were times where we were in position to make that pass that could’ve gotten the third goal; we just didn’t do it. But the important thing is that we got the win. San Jose went up 1-0 last week [against Philadelphia] and ended up losing the game. So we got the win and we are happy to travel back to Columbus with three points.

 

FORWARD KEI KAMARA

On what he saw in Philadelphia's defense to score two similar goals
It’s not really their defense, its just way we play. It’s just me reading the play and reading my teammates, and as you can see, both of the balls were intentionally to go to the back post. It wasn’t necessarily the defense, it was just our stuff.

On Harrison Afful's impact since joining Crew SC
It’s great. He is a really, really good addition to the team, and he’s shown it. He is a Ghanaian international, played in the World Cup, African Nations Cup, so he is a really experienced player. It’s all about us clicking as fast as possible as a team. Today he showed some really good play.

On what it means to be the 16th player in MLS history to score 20 goals in one season
I actually didn’t know that. But 16 is actually my lucky number. I came to America at the age of 16. So I have always counted that number as my lucky number. So to be the 16th person, I’m happy. But I don’t want stay there, I want to move forward.

On if he aspires to beat the MLS record of 27 goals 
Tony Tchani says I can score eight goals in the last five games, but If I can win the next five games, I'll be more than happy. I want to score goals, I want to help the team out. If my goals are going to help the team out, then I’m going to keep scoring.

On how he treats this game, since there are playoff implications involved
Right now, 'til the end of the season, it’s crunch time. We want to get maximum points from all these games. Playing against teams in our conference, those are points you cant let go.

 

GOALKEEPER STEVE CLARK

On the importance of Crew SC's centerbacks' (Michael Parkhurst and Tyson Wahl) performances
It’s a bummer when you don’t get a shutout, I thought we defended well enough to have one. We have been working really hard all year. Getting better at the little things, positionally, communication, it’s starting to pay a little bit of dividends, so we’ll just continue.

On if he saw a difference in Philadelphia's attack in the second half & his save to tip Le Toux's shot off the crossbar
They pressured higher in the second half, instead of sitting back after we got the goal. I thought did better when they we trying to press us high. Im so focused on organizing us really, they just did a good job attacking. You just think about who they have at the top, they have Conor Casey, who is a load, Le Toux running underneath, and Sapong, I mean these guys are heavy.

On how big this win in September is
It’s big, we need to kill off games. Previously in the year, we have let teams back in. It’s big for us, three points, at this stage, is huge for us. We are still in the running in the East, so we are looking forward to a big game next week.


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