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Swanson: 'It was a better performance'
August 23rd, 2012 4:34PM

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[REACTION: USA-China] A 1-1 tie was not the result the USA was looking for from its second match at the Under-20 Women's World Cup, but Coach Steve Swanson and his players took away a lot of positives from the game. For what they had to say ...

U.S. head coach STEVE SWANSON
On the match:
“It was a better performance than our first game in terms of our possession and ball movement. Obviously it was tough to give up that goal early, but I thought our team responded very well and we played some good soccer. During the last 20 minutes, I thought we got a bit impatient, but China was organized and defended very well and we knew it was going to be that kind of game. It was a good education for our players. It was not the result we wanted, but the positives are that while we didn’t create as many chances as we wanted, it was a better performance for us, and now we have to turn our thoughts to the next game.”

On facing Germany in the Group D finale:
“They are very good. We played them once in Spain earlier in the year and we have a lot of respect for them. They have good players at every position, are well organized, well-coached and it should be another great test for us. This is what we expected from this group.”

On if Germany already being through to the quarterfinals is an advantage for the USA:
“We’re concentrating on winning the game. I don’t know if it’s advantage. I am not looking at it from their point of view, we’re approaching the game from our point of view and we’ll look at what we can do to get a result. I think the group is still up for grabs, this made it a bit tighter, but we are focusing on ourselves and getting ourselves ready for this next game.”

On the final 20 minutes:
“We started to go for things that weren’t there. We kind of played into their tactics a little bit. The space was in front of them, and we had to move it quickly to try to get around them on the flanks and kind of lost our patience. They are pretty good with the ball so once we lost it a few times we had to chase to get it back ... that last 20 minutes we just needed to be a little more patient, be a little sharper and keep our rhythm a little more.”

On the match and looking forward to the final group game:
“China was organized, give them credit, but I thought there were a lot of good things in the game and the group is still out there. We have to respond and this team has responded in the past.”

U.S. forward MAYA HAYES
On improving from the first game:
“Especially after their goal, we picked it up tremendously, especially in our possession. It’s not the result we wanted, but we have to be happy with the way that we played even though we didn’t finish the chances that we possibly could have, but from the Ghana game to the China game we definitely improved.”

On taking over the game after the China goal:
“Our movement, especially right after their goal, got a lot better off the ball. The forwards were checking back to the midfielders and laying balls off and getting them caught in transition and not letting them get their shape. That’s what we improved and had success and we could have got another goal.”

On looking forward to the final group game:
“Our goal is to get better. Right now we are doing anything we can. We are controlling the controllables, as [team captain] Julie Johnston said after the game. Right now, it’s regen[eration] and its preparation and as soon as we step on the field against Germany, giving everything we have at that very moment and taking it one game at a time. “

U.S. midfielder MORGAN BRIAN
On the match:
“We possessed the ball a lot better than we did in the first game and we are headed in the right direction, we just couldn’t finish. We kept the ball really well, we switched the point of attack and used the flanks. Our goal came from the flanks, but we needed more of that.”

On the World Cup experience:
“The World Cup is definitely a learning process. There’s up and downs in every game and in the whole tournament. We just want to move forward and play our best.”

U.S. defender MOLLY PATHMAN
On the match:
“I think China played a good game and they had a good goal, but I am really proud of us in how we came back, got the goal and we were unlucky not to get another one. But that’s how soccer is and we are looking forward now to Germany.”

On coming back from a goal down to tie:
“To go down a goal gives us some encouragement moving forward seeing that we can come back and we can deal with the adversity. We haven’t been down in a while.”

U.S. defender CRYSTAL DUNN
On the match:
“We kept the ball, and China definitely made it hard for us. Getting around them was a little bit difficult and I think that’s where we struggled. But possession-wise, we have the ball the most of the time.”

On looking forward to the Germany game:
“Honestly, we are in great spirits right now. I would say, yeah, we didn’t get the result we wanted, but a tie is definitely better than a loss and we have to move forward with the next game. We can still control this so we have to focus and go after it.”



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