Quote Sheet

Real Salt Lake 3-2 FC Dallas

Rio Tinto Stadium; Sandy, Utah

Saturday, September 4, 2021

Interim Head Coach Pablo Mastroeni

On what he told the team at halftime:

“One of the things that we talked about is that we were in good positions in the attacking phase and felt like we were just sloppy with our passes in the first 35 minutes. And our giveaways led to a lot of counterattacks and a couple of dangerous chances for Dallas. Once we settled down, we were able to move the ball quicker. We were able to exploit those gaps that the guys were taking up. I thought the rotation of the midfield was really good, and we talked about that. But more importantly, knowing that we’re at home. There’s a bit of altitude. These guys have trained this week and their mentality has been so good. I think the switch flipped a little bit there. We got on top of the game, controlled the ball on both sides and dictated the way we wanted the game to be. The tempo was really high. Something we stressed during the week was making these guys run towards their own goal and play forward. I thought when we won the ball we played forward and created some really good opportunities.”

On Noah Powder’s performance tonight:

“He’s been great. It’s tough for a young player to get an opportunity. It’s almost amidst all this chaos that it fell serendipitously to him. It was a moment where if Aaron Herrera wasn’t out last week, he probably wouldn’t have had a chance to start. But I think there were glimpses of some really good stuff in Vancouver, so I guess that game wasn’t all lost. Because from that you realize that there’s a young kid who’s still learning the defensive side of that position. But [Noah] is just a Ferrari going forward. He’s everything you want in a left back. He’s calm on the ball. He brings his midfielders into the game. He looks forward and combines. He can cross and shoot. So he’s an attacking player in that position that’s also able to defend, which he’s made great strides on this year. We’ve worked really hard to get him to where he’s at. I couldn’t be happier for the young man and think he’s got a really bright future ahead of him.”

Defender Noah Powder

On his increased confidence:

“Honestly, I feel as though I am [more confident]. It was a little difficult in the early minutes because we had to feel out the game. We have to know how the other team plays and how we want to implement ourselves. In the first 15 minutes we said, ‘We’ll go big.’ And that’s what we wanted to do. But once we got to play, that’s my style of play, so once we did that we got to implement our football and the way we play.”

On his crossing:

“I would say we work on crossing about two times after training, maybe twice a week. I’m always out there crossing right or left-footed as much as I can to get better on both feet looking for our best players to score goals.”

On his level of comfort at the MLS level:

“I feel a lot more comfortable. Obviously I’m still very young and I still have a lot more to learn. As long as I stay grounded and learn each game, I’m progressing in fitness and experience. I feel as though I can take it to the next level and finally can.”

Midfielder Albert Rusnak

On what contributed to all of the 2nd half chances:

“We started a little sloppy and gave away a cheap ball that came off of one of our mistakes not because they did anything special. We shot ourselves in the foot there, but the most important thing was that we equalized before halftime. Tactically we changed a few things. We changed how we wanted to press them because in the first half it didn’t work, but we came out and reacted well. In the second half it felt like we were putting a lot more pressure in terms of we weren’t allowing them to build out and have lots of possession with the ball which led to us winning balls higher up the field giving us greater chances. We created a lot of chances today. We scored three goals and if we would've been a little more clinical we could have had more, but three was enough for these three points.”

On the ball movement:

“In the first 20 minutes we knew that they wanted to press like most of the other teams in this league. So starting the games can be hectic and tough to play out from the back end. We go along and try to play second balls in their half, but we know every game is going to open up as the game goes on and we saw that at the end. They created some chances, but we had more today. I’m happy for the three points because we’ve had games this year that went quite well and we didn’t win. We’ve also had games that we didn’t play well and we won and I feel like today was one of those games where outside of the first 20 minutes we played well and got the results.”

On Noah Powder’s performance:

He's a very attacking minded left back and he showed that today. Our second goal came from him being in a high position and shooting on the goalkeeper who made the save allowing Jony [Menendez] to tap it in. Credit to him for being in such a high position to attack as a left back. He’s been training very well all year. He’s been waiting for this chance and I feel like he took it today.