G – McGinty
D – Prideaux, Nelsen, Reyes, Pope
M – Alegria, Villegas, Etcheverry, Olsen, Convey, Alavanja, McKinley
F – Lassiter, Moreno, Curtis, Quintinilla
Quaranta attended and worked out with physio Rick Guter. It is obvious that he is anxious to get back into the swing of things and over his initial depression – he continually exchanges jibes with pretty much everyone within earshot.
Rimando is in Atlanta cheering on the Freedom in the Founder’s Cup.
Williams will join the team on Sunday. All this week he was in NJ attending his high school coach’s funeral.
Etcheverry worked out separately. According to RH he might not be 100% for the game on Sunday due to his recent travels (see quotes).
Moreno pulled up lame at the end of practice with a pull or strain to his groin/thigh. He is day-to-day.
A very light pre-game day practice. For the most part, the team warmed up and then went into a ½ field, 3 small goals scrimmage. It ended the practice with 1-touch shooting on goal w/ McGinty fending them off. For the most part the defenders did significantly better than the mids or forwards. The latter two groups constantly tried the tricky shots – curving into the corner of the goals, chipping the GK, drives to the upper 90s etc – while the defenders simply hammered the ball home.
– Recently the MetroStars’ defense has been dreadful at home. Will you try to go out early and score quickly against them?
“No, maybe the other way. We’re not going in tentative that’s for sure. Marco’s a little tired, so we’ll see how he is on Sunday. We may bring him on later in the game. That’s a consideration. But yes, we’re going to go at them right from the get-go. But, we’re going to earn the right to win the game as we’ve done. I think just going out there gangbusters that’s a bit too old school. You’ve got to play your way into the game. You know you’ve got to get it solid. We know that they’re going to come at us hell and high water and maybe we can catch them on the break early on.”
“But, we’re certainly not going to ram it down their throat right from the first whistle. We’ve going to play our way into the game. That’s what we’ve done in the past. It’s been a 90-minute performance and we’ve been as threatening at the end of the game, if not more, than when we started the game.”
“I just hope the finishing is as good as it was the other day.”
– Can we expect the same lineup as San Jose with the possible exception of Marco?
“I’m not sure. I’m going to think about that – see how Marco is. But yes, they played awfully well in a lot of regards on Saturday against San Jose. You always keep faith with that sort of performance. You have to, don’t you? Isn’t that what rewarding effort and ability is all about? That’s what I want to do. But, we’ll what happens with Jaime here, and see how Marco is looking. We’ll be fine either way.”
– Aside from scoring against San Jose, what did you see with that lineup that makes you want to stay with it?
“Just an overall cohesion . . . balance. The players playing right up to their scratch mark and really complimenting each other. And I still think, I watched the game twice after that, that we can pass the ball more accurately, it’s as simple as that. We need a little more consideration in our passing. But, I think overall there was a greater compliment of each other on Saturday. Without being too technical or vague as well, they seemed to compliment each other’s performances better. Even Jaime, even the opportunities we didn’t take advantage of, there was a lot of . . . a lot that led up to those opportunities – the running off the ball, the through passes, the creation of chances. It all came together real nicely without putting the cherry on the cake, which is what it’s all about. You know it’s like m———– without penetration, you’re just playing with yourself.”
– If either Etcheverry or Moreno are not in form on Sunday, how quickly do you pull the trigger and get them out of the game?
“It depends. It depends on how bad . . . it’s not just them, it’s anybody, it truly is. If it’s a bad performance out there, you looking at the bad performance and what that player can possibly . . . even Marco, if he’s having a really off, horrible, nightmarish game, you’re reluctant to pull that guy with the flies’ eyes off the field, because he can do you just like that with that telling pass. You know you’ve got to take that into account. Whereas if it’s Richie Williams, that’s . . . he’s a lot more easily substituted for. We have players in the defense that can come in for Ryan if he’s having a bad day. But with Marco and Jaime, they’ve pretty much go to look as if they’re going further and further in the hole before I’ll pull them out. I have to keep faith with our match winners. I have to be loyal to them, and I feel as if I have been.”
“But, like the other day when I pulled Jaime here, it was clear his game was going downhill and I didn’t want him to be a part of it much more. And he responded well to that and he’s taken his medicine.”
“Nobody likes to be subbed. I don’t know what it is like because I was never subbed in my life – and you can look that up in the record books.”
– Zambrano said that he’s going to another team. Is that true?
“Yes, that’s total . . . that’s not true at all. I think what may have happened is that is that he’s had some phone calls and renewed interest all of a sudden. That happens in football, it just happens. You get what we call ‘knobbled,’ you get tapped up.”
“Henry will be here on Tuesday hopefully. There’s been wranglings on his visa. It’s like bubbling tar now . . . it’s a war zone and people are dying there – 17 people were killed there the other week! It’s not exactly going to McDonalds and ordering a pack of French fries. He’s having troubles, but it’s been sorted out, and he’ll be here once these complications are sorted out. He’s had to travel from his home down there to Bogata, which hasn’t been easy. There’s been all sorts of hang ups, but he’ll be here.”
– What most concerns you about New York?
“Diallo, Mathis, and Andy Williams – them three. Andy’s having a good year. And Diallo is such a huge presence and menace. We’re considering marking him man-to-man and giving Milton . . . Milton’s done an outstanding job when he’s plays in man-to-man situations, if not his best games for us. He’s so athletic, and so fast, and so tenacious, I think he’ll do a good job with Diallo if we go that route.”
“You know they’re fighting for their lives, they’re fighting for themselves I believe. There’s always been a lot of disruption in New York for the last few years I think in some ways. They really are, they’re looking out for themselves. Octavio will have them . . .”
– They really only need to get a draw to complicate DCUnited’s playoff chances. Do you expect them to play for a draw and pack the box?
“I wouldn’t think so. I think they’ll want to come and win. They’ll want to put us away. They have to play us three times. So I don’t think they can be too cute. If they come out with that sort of cute attitude it could bite them bad. This is New York, this is in the Meadowlands, they ain’t going to . . . . I don’t think for a second they’re going to be tentative or they’re going to hold back. They’re going to come at us and they’re going to be the team that wants to puncture us early and deflate us because they’ll be well aware the longer we hang in the game we’ll be the ones to be more threatening. The first goal will be important . . . very, very important in this game because I think if we get it, I’ll be very confident.”