170914 Post Match Quotes

ATL vs NER | Post-Match Quotes

  • Match: Atlanta United vs New England Revolution
  • Location: Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta Georgia.
  • Date: September 13, 2017
  • Final Score: ATL 7-0 NER (Recap | Highlights)

Gerardo Martino - Atlanta Head Coach

On tonight’s performance against New England in comparison to performance against Dallas:

“It’s different. The other day, we played 11 on 11. Today, after the second goal, we played against a team of 10 players and after the third goal, a team with nine players. I don’t think it’s fair to make an analysis of that.”

On tying the all-time winning margin in MLS history:

“Forgive me for sounding boring but I am going to repeat that we played a large part of the game up two players. I do want to say that I respect how our team played after that but that had a big impact.”

On the substitutions:

“First, with Greg (Garza), he had a little muscular injury so we took him off. With Jeff (Larentowicz), he has four yellows so we took him off. With Leandro (Gonzalez Pirez), he picked up a yellow today so he will miss the next game and we took him off because if he had picked up a second yellow and a red card, the suspension would have been two games so we took him off for that. Thinking ahead that Jeff may have to fill in at center-back in the next game.”

On taking the lead early in the game:

“You treat it the same. You have to respect the team that you are playing and you have to be careful not to pick up any other yellow cards or caution. So, for me, I would have preferred to not play the second half.”

Josef Martinez - Atlanta Forward

On if this was the best the team has played all season:

“I think we’re doing things well. Obviously, today’s game got a little complicated with them going down two players but I think we’re playing really well at home. We’re making it hard for teams to play here and we need to continue on this path and we’re going to do important things.”

On if the team will be ready for the upcoming game on Saturday vs Orlando City SC:

“Obviously, it’s a different game, so we have to have that mindset. It’s also a rivalry game for us. So, I’ll be ready but not only do the players have to be 100 percent but we want the fans to be 100 percent.”

On what he expects the atmosphere will be like on Saturday when Mercedes-Benz Stadium:

“I think it’s going to be more pressure — but a good pressure — and we really appreciate all of the fans that come out even for a midweek game. We understand that they have work and school but we really appreciate the support. Hopefully, they’ll come out this weekend.”

On if the team is starting to feel unbeatable at home:

“This is our house and we have to respect it. Even if Real Madrid or Barcelona comes in here, we have to respect it and that’s the mentality that we have. I think with the past two games, you’ve seen that.”

Michael Parkhurst - Atlanta Defender

On tonight's performance:

“Tonight was different. I have never experienced a game quite like this one. Even before the red cards, I thought we came out with good intensity with the right mentality and the right amount of energy. Two good performances — a good way — to start this home stand.”

On how important it was to take over the game by halftime so the team could conserve energy:

"Yeah, you definitely want to take advantage of it. When they get that first red card, you want to punish them. You want to make sure that they know the game is over and that it is going to be an uphill battle for them — a long 90 minutes or however (many) minutes is left. You don't want to give them that hope of maybe we can do something and we were able to do that by halftime.”

On if he knew this was the first time in MLS history that a team was held to no shots:

"I was told afterwords. To which we told Brad (Guzan), he had a very good game."

On how he feels:

“I feel better. It’s really tough being out for a long stretch of time especially, myself, I had two injuries back to back basically. I just want to appreciate my teammates as well because we’re all working as a group and with them, they make things easier on the field.”

Miguel Almirón - Atlanta Midfielder

On how he feels about the result of tonight’s match:

“I’m really happy with the game — happy with the result — but more happy because we’re improving. We’re playing better and we can’t focus on this result. We already have to look to Orlando City SC because we know that’s another important game.”

On how they have had success outscoring opponents at Mercedes-Benz Stadium:

“I think we’ve always been strong at home. It’s just different at home when we’re here with our fans but like I said, we have to keep looking forward and keep staying focused on the games to come.”

On the message to the team from Tata at halftime:

“Just that we stay calm and that we keep playing the same way. We keep pressing. We keep maintaining the ball and that we keep our patience.”

On if he has ever participated in such a lopsided victory:

“No. Never in my career by such a margin. We just have to keep our feet on the ground with a calm mind and focus on what’s to come.”

Jeff Larentowicz - Atlanta Midfielder

On setting two MLS records tonight:

 “I think the game changed completely. Honestly it was a bizarre 45 but that’s kind-of the world we’re in right now. Its good. We said at halftime that we wanted to continue to be professional — to respect the opponent, respect the game — and I think that we did that”

On the importance of this match for playoff chances:

This week is huge. Two wins so far and the game on Saturday is massive, obviously, and we just wanted to focus on the front end — the front end of this streak of games to get points to move up the table — and hopefully not look back.”

On the team’s success playing in Mercedes-Benz Stadium:

We like playing in front of our fans. If we were in Piedmont Park, I think that we would enjoy it. Whether it’s here or there or anywhere, it doesn’t matter. We love playing in front of them. The building of course is beautiful and we’ve done okay in the last two games but we can’t expect results like that every week but we can expect the fans to be like that every week which is special for us.”

On what he expects the atmosphere will be like on Saturday when Mercedes-Benz Stadium:

“There’s times on the field when you just tell yourself you’re not even going to yell because it doesn’t matter. I think we were a bit further away from Brad (Guzan) tonight and he lost his voice. So to see what it will be like with 70,000, will be something.”

Anton Walkes - Atlanta Defender

On how the team is playing recently:

“It’s a great feeling. Getting the early goals always puts you in the right position to finish the game. The last few games I think we’ve been in control and we’ve got a few tough games ahead so it’s all about keeping the momentum.”

On the impact of the bigger field:

“A lot. Obviously it’s new turf, as well. It’s all about making sure they does the running so it’s all about keeping the ball and making them do the hard work.”

On free-kick goal from Kevin Kratz:

“Kevin (Kratz) has got that in his locker all day long. He’s done it in practice many times. It’s something he practices a few times a week and he’s definitely mastered the technique.”

On what he expects the atmosphere will be like on Saturday when Mercedes-Benz Stadium:

“Well, (with) how our fans are. They are definitely the best in the league so there’s no doubt they will be here supporting us.”

On what he saw before his goal:

“I just saw an opening at the back post and I thought if I can get in behind the goal — if he could just put the guy off — maybe I could get a rebound.”

Kevin Kratz - Atlanta Midfielder

On his free-kick goal:

“Yeah, it was a free kick. I try to practice it every week. After practice, I try to take a few balls and off my foot, I thought ‘yeah, this one feels nice,’ and it went in so, yeah, I’m happy. It was a great team performance today. It’s a tough game for the referee but at the end, we’re happy to take the three points.”

On the team’s success at Mercedes-Benz Stadium:

“It’s impressive. First of all, it’s the team that works hard every week in practice and then, it’s the fans. They push us forward every time. You never hear anything bad — shouting, whistling — nothing like that. It’s always positive and that’s what keeps us going forward and trying harder the next time.”

On if the team is starting to feel unbeatable at home:

“No, we don’t feel that. We work hard. It’s not like here we are, we will win. We work hard in practice and treat every opponent like the other. There’s no disrespect or anything like that. We were two men up but we were still playing with respect to the other team. Beyond that, what it says about the group: we respect each other, we work for each other and that’s what we have to keep doing in the games.”

Jay Heaps - New England Head Coach

On first-half video automatic replay (VAR) and the penalty decisions:

“I don’t think anyone has seen anything like it because VAR just came into play. I don’t think that you are not going to see more like this. I felt like tonight they overstepped what they think they should be doing. I think the penalty kick calls are great. I think the first red card was a reach to VAR something as opposed to (the) referee saw something, let it go. It is what it is. We’re in a new age — a new era. It’s not pleasant. We have to learn our lesson. I think the biggest mistake that we had tonight was giving up the goal in the first minute because we were prepared for them — ready for them — and we took a bad approach to that first goal. That’s unfortunate because that derailed the rest of the game.”

On the first goal:

“It was funny. We did not want to give up the goal, obviously, but then I felt like for the next 10 minutes we were OK before the red card. It was almost like we found our rhythm a little bit. They only had one chance. They scored it, obviously, which is a credit to them. Obviously, you don’t want to go into a place like this and give them momentum but I thought we rallied well and needed to be smarter. There have been challenges that I have seen over the course of the first couple (of) weeks (that VAR has been implemented) that were very similar to that one not VAR’d and moved on. This one — I felt like — having seen it, just a little bit debatable and a little harsh at the time.”

On the message to his team at halftime:

“I think it’s really about trying to find the moments. You’re up against it so you can’t say, ‘go score five goals.’ You have to say ‘one play at a time.’ I was actually really proud of the guys — the way we came out of the second half. It was close to the 70th minute before they scored. Let’s be honest, they are a really good team. They are beating other teams with a full roster. We were at nine. Happy for that. I was able to tell the guys, ‘This is what we’ve practiced.’ Not so much 10 versus eight, or 11 versus nine, but there were moments. I thought our guys did a good job of compacting the space but the truth was the game was really flipped on its head in the first half.”

Andrew Farrell - New England Defender

On the first-half VAR and penalty decisions:

“Obviously, I’ve never been a part of a first half like that. Obviously, unfortunate for all of those calls but I guess it’s going to happen in certain games. It happened a couple times this game so we felt unlucky on that. We didn’t start the game as well as we wanted to against a really good team at home. That’s also really disappointing for us but starting the second half I liked how our guys battled. Down two guys against a good team, I think our guys put in the work. It’s a tough result against a rival and we are trying to fight for the playoffs right now. We have to move on real quick and not make it two games — not bury ourselves here. We still can make the playoffs so we just have to keep battling.”

On the first goal:

“The red cards were tough but you don’t want to give up an early goal against a team like this at home with the crowd behind them. It got them going. Like I said, I think a lot of guys showed heart — showed that it’s the guys in the locker room that are the ones who can make the difference to get our chances — and make it to the playoffs. Obviously, it is unfortunate with the result, I think speaking for all of the guys, we were really embarrassed. It’s not how we wanted this night to go but at the same time, we can’t make it two. We have to get ready for (Sporting) KC who is another great team at home. We have to bring the fight and the heart that I saw in the second half from a lot of the guys on the bench and on the field. We want to make the playoffs. We want to push for that and I think we have the guys that can do it.”

Cody Cropper - New England Goalkeeper 

On the first half:

“I have honestly never seen anything like that. I think that caught us all by surprise. We were put in a bad situation and that’s just how it went.”

On the message at halftime:

“Get through the game. At that point, the coaching staff, the players — we — all knew that it was a tough game. At that point, at halftime, it was never going to go our way. Our goal was to get through the game and best-case scenario walk back in at the end of the game losing 4-0. Unfortunately that didn’t happen but I think we showed a lot of spirit. I think we played well. We fought for one another. We fought for 45 minutes. Unfortunately, we conceded another three goals but we were down two men for the better part of 60 minutes and that’s taxing on the players that are running around on the field. For me, standing in goal, all I could do was continue to talk to them and continue to help them get through it because they are out there working very hard. It was just a tough scenario to be in.”

On focusing on the next match:

“For us, this game is done. It is in the past and we — as a group — have moved on. I think the next 48 hours is huge. We need to take care of our bodies, recover mentally and just forget that this game happened. We play them again and we can focus on that then but right now, we are focused on (Sporting) KC and going there and getting three points.”

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