Quote Sheet: Real Monarchs 2-1 Reno 1868 FC

QUOTE SHEET
REAL MONARCHS 2-1 RENO 1868 FC
RIO TINTO STADIUM; June 17, 2016

Real Monarchs
Head Coach Mark Briggs

On the win streak:
“It is obviously a fantastic achievement for the players in that locker room. They deserve to enjoy the result tonight and enjoy taking what they have actually achieved. I just said to them that they have just put their names in history, so well done.”

On the end of the match:
“Yeah, you could say it got helter-skelter. I think the occasion might have got to a few players, with the record on their shoulders. But tactically we weren’t at our greatest, with the ball we weren’t at our greatest, but we found a way to win the game and yes we rode our look at the end of the game. Their goal keeper should wear number nine next week. So yeah, it is just pleasing to get the three points and to break that record. Now, hopefully we can move on.”

On Seba’s season:
“Sebastian is having a fantastic season. He is constantly performing, and consistently performing at a high level. I think he is one of those players who is a joy to watch. It is like he is playing down at the local park. You know, he is one of those players you never know what he is going to do, he has great ability and aside from that Sebastian’s work rate and attitude, it’s contagious and if Chandler and Sebastian are working like that, then it is contagious for the rest of the boys. I am more pleased with his work rate off the ball than what he does with the ball.”

On Peay’s goal:
“The locker room was pleased but I also think they realized that their performance wasn’t to the level that we have consistently been producing and so it was pleasing to get the goal at a crucial time. It does change the attitude in the locker room but with that group, they have a hunger and desire to be better and they didn’t feel like they hit their standards in that first half.”

On the win:
“I feel the group that the front office put together, there’s so much potential in that locker room. I think you are right, we do well at the moment and we broke this record, but I don’t think we are anywhere near the potential that group has, which is exciting. They have to be kept on their toes and they have to understand that they have to work every day and they have to understand they haven’t achieved anything yet. Ok, they broke history, but that’s ok, that’s great, and are written in the books, it is not a medal, it is not a trophy. In this game trophies are what matters.”

On the lineup:
“It is always difficult when you have different players, like we had three players playing down from the first team, which is always difficult, but the first team players are MLS players. So, I don’t think that is an excuse for the performance to not be as cohesive as we expected. It was just one of those nights where we did not hit the level of performance that we have in the past however many games we have played, but the pleasing thing is we are finding a way to win games even though we are not performing at our potential.”

On Phoenix and Drogba:
“It is going to be another difficult game, it is going to be another huge test. Obviously, when you play against a player of the caliber of Didier Drogba, whatever age he is at and not matter what people say this and that, he’s still got talent. You don’t play at that high level if you don’t have the ability and talent, but it will be a good game for the players to pick themselves back with someone of that caliber and they should be excited to play. It looks like an exciting atmosphere there and every time I have challenged them, they have stepped up. They will be prepared and they will be challenged in Phoenix.”

On being consistent at home and on the road:
“I think it starts with, we always speak about having a hunger and desire and I think having that desire and having that hunger to succeed, is the base for our team. We’ve got ability but it’s like, you could have all of the ability in the world, but if you don’t have that hunger and that desire, that work rate to achieve, you fall potential and your ability is a waste of time. So, I think the biggest feeling of the work rate and the desire to get better every week, to get better in every training session, and to consistently perform, that is the most pleasing thing to me.”

Midfielder Ricardo Velazco

On the win:
“It means the world to me because I was here when the team was struggling. And for us to set a record now and me be a part of it it’s a great feeling. I’m bless to be part of this team, I know it has only been twice, but anything that I can do to contribute to this team I’ll do it and I’m happy I was able to play in this game.”

On the club as a whole:
I think the franchise grew. The quality of the players got better. They got more experience in this team than we ever had before. And once you get the winning mentality and it’s in you and you start feeling it, it becomes easier, it becomes second nature. These players have that and they come out with swag every single time. Every player has something that they bring to the team. It’s a special group.”

On Seba’s assist:
“Good quality and Seba is a great player. Seba is a different maker in this league and I think he shows that every game. So yea great for him to get those two assists and help us win.”

On Lalo’s performance:
“Yea Lalo came out huge. Lalo was probably one of the key players in the game. He kept us in the game the whole time and he came up with some big times saves. That’s what he’s there for he came to do it today.”

On the nervous final minutes of the match:
“I think it was mental mistakes here and there. I think the first goal I gave it up and it ends up leading to a ball between them. And somehow the guy turns and scores. It was a little bit unfortunate because we did get behind him and somehow he still was able to turn and scored. It was just little mental mistakes. And towards the end a team like that it’s going to be feeling it. Once you get crosses and start shooting, their keeper became their dangerous player. You do what you have to do but we won. The keeper almost became a true 9.”

Midfielder Sebastian Velasquez

On league-leading 6 assists:
“On the back of my mind I’m not really thinking about individual stats.  Obviously it’s important and it's a part of my job as a playmaker to make things happen but for me it’s just incredible what we’ve done so far and to be able to come into the 12th game and be able to play for an opportunity to break a record, it's unbelievable and all the boys are showing the hard work we're putting in day in and day out and we’re very fortunate to break this record and actually to continue it for the game in Scottsdale.”

On Reno and their attack:
“Reno has been on a great streak the last couple of games, they’re a very good team and we have a lot of respect for them and we studied them as much as we could and they have one of the most dangerous forwards in the league, which is Dane Kelly, and we were very aware of him.  At the same time we’ve created this place to be our fortress, Rio Tinto is the place where we need to come out and set the tone and I think to be honest we didn’t start very well and didn’t start very hot.  I don’t think we came out very sharp but to be able to go up 2-1 into halftime and be able to be in that position second half I thought we came out a lot better, controlled the game at times and got opportunities and that's just how it works sometimes.  It was a dirty game, but it shows the type of team we are, it shows that we have to be dirty sometimes but we can still grab 3 points.”

On home success at Rio Tinto Stadium:
“I think it comes down to knowing that this place is a place of respect.  When you come to Rio Tinto you want to have a mindset that we want team to be scared to come here and play us.  Teams are starting to realize that we have like 8 games won in a row, teams know that when they come here they are going to come for a battle and on top of that they have to play at altitude.  We train in this thing every single day so they have to come ready and fit and so we’ve shown what we’re capable of and we’re thankfully for everything that's going on.”

What Sebastian attributes to 6 goals and 6 assists:
 "Sticking to the game plan, coach believes in me and believes in what I can do, he’s given me the opportunity to play the position which I have known my whole life, which is attacking mid, a lot of times when I’ve played here I’ve gotten a lot of critiques and I’ve got into a lot of arguments with people that say I never played attacking mid for RSL.  So now to be here at Real Monarchs and to be put into a professional environment and play the position that i know and to get 6 goals and 6 assists, its incredible.  At the same time, I have an unbelievable team, we have to realize that.  We have young MLS team, this is not a USL team.  We train at an MLS level, we train against the first team sometimes, and we can show that we can compete at that level and our season is showing that.  We’re back at the top of the table, but at the same time we have to take it game by game.  There is a lot of young players so sometimes we can get comfortable and it's all about maintaining your feet on the ground and just move on to the next game."

How to maintain focus on achieving goals:
"For me, as one of the captains, I have to say that we now hold the record and so now we have to continue to hold this record, it's not just cause we beat it that it stops now.  We have no hardware and at the end of the day we have to win a championship, thats our goal.  We said that whatever we’re playing for is going to be every single game we get 3 points, if that puts us at the top of the table we want to be at the top of table every single week.  If we’re going to be in the power rankings, we have to be at the top of the power rankings.  If we have someone in the goal scoring position than we want Chandler as the number one goal scorer.  If we have the top assists, than we want Sebastian at the top of the assists.  If we have a defender that's scoring the most goals, than we have a defender scoring the most goals.  We’re a very competitive team, we’re going for every silverware, the best throw ins, we want to win that.  We want to be a championship team and we want people to talk about the Monarchs and I think that where we’re at right now and it's showing but it's not until the end of November until we’re holding that trophy that we’re going to know it’s all worth it."

Defender Taylor Peay

On defending Dane Kelly:
“Both of those forwards are dangerous, so we want to keep them in front of us as much as we can. They beat us on the one goal but I think, for the most part, we executed our game plan as well as we could tonight, so we’re fairly happy about it.”

On his first goal at Rio Tinto Stadium:
“It’s awesome. It was a perfect service. It’s awesome.”

On his defensive preference:
“Right back, center back. It doesn’t matter. As long as I’m on the field I’m enjoying it.”

On the advantage of having homegrown players:
“One of the biggest things is there’s a sense of pride. You see all of the homegrown players through the Monarchs. Then you see them up on the first team. Everyone’s playing for the badge and there’s a sense of pride behind it. It’s awesome.”

On the importance of his goal:
“Absolutely. I grew up watching Real Salt Lake through high school. So to be able to score and help push this team to get a historical win is huge for everyone. I’m very happy about it. Like I said, It’s just something to build on. We still have a lot of season left so we’ll go from there.”

On what his championship experience brings to the team:
“I think the coaching staff does a great job at not letting us get complacent. Overall, what’s huge for us is we have amnesia. We don’t get too high, we don’t get too low. We celebrate a win and we’re happy about it but we also know that we haven’t done anything. Like [Sebastian Velasquez] said, we want more, more, more. Everyone’s bought in. We’re on the same page right now. We’re happy about the win but we’re going to forget about it now and we’re on to the next.”

Reno 1868
Head Coach Ian Russell

On the last moments of the game:
“I haven’t seen the replay, so I don’t want to make a comment, but the linesman had a better angle than I did. My angle didn’t look like it was off, but that’s what he gets paid to do, so he probably made the right call.”

On the difference between the last match with the Monarchs:
“We’re getting healthy. We were completely banged up at the start of the year. We had three of our four starting backs were out of the game. With a team like Salt Lake, they’ll punish that and they did. They were better last game. We competed very well this game.”

On how the offense developed chances: 
“We just have a dynamic team with a lot of goal scorers on the field. We’re second or third in the league in goals. We’re always going to get chances just we’ve got to put them away.”

On the Monarchs goals:
“The first one was ridiculous. It was a quick free kick that hit the wall and they countered on us. Hats off because they don’t press. They sit back and they wait for mistakes. They’re a really good counterattacking team. That’s what they do and they’re good at it.”

On moving forward:
“We just have to get back on the track of getting results on the road. Portland will be a fight. Every team is good in this league. We need to go up there and get a good bit of rest over the next couple days to put in a good show.”

Striker Antoine Hoppenot

On the game’s ending:
“I don’t think you can explain that. The ball falling twice to your goalkeeper in the 90th minute, I don’t think that ever happens so it was pretty funny to see that but a bit unfortunate of us, for him to hit the crossbar and not go in. It was a crazy game. I think both teams went out there and played really well and I think we both know we’re two of the best teams in the league and two of the teams who actually try to play good soccer so we’re happy to be able to play against each other but we know we get them at home so hopefully we’ll beat them then.”

On the team’s form and the Monarchs:
“I think we were a new club back then so we had been together just a couple months so now we’ve been able to play a bunch of games together, hang out with each other on the field, off the field so it’s helped us grow confidence with each other and as a team so I think we’re just a more confident team and we came out here and tried to play a little bit and, ya know, it’s a little surprising sometimes when the other team tries to play because not a lot of team try to play and it’s a nice field so it’s pretty cool to play out there.”

On his goal:
“I got a great ball from Wehan that he played me through and the ball kind of got stuck under my feet and it ended up benefiting me because both the defenders bit on it so I just cut it back and I was in on goal so all I had to do was put it in the back of the net.”

On looking forward to Portland:
“I think we’re going to take a lot of confidence out of this game and that’s been one of the best teams--I think they’ve won nine in a row--so I think they know we came out here and made in tough for them. They got the win but I think they know we made it tough on them so we can be confident we’re able to play with the best and we’re going to see them again so we’re excited about that.”

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