Utah Royals FC 1-1 Portland Thorns FC
Rio Tinto Stadium; Sandy, Utah
April 28, 2018
Utah Royals FC
Head Coach Laura Harvey
On losing the lead late in the game:
“I think this is the most frustrated I’ve been after a game, because we knew what it would take to break them down and we just didn’t do it well enough and often enough. We know defensively we’re good, we know we make it difficult, but we have to keep working on us with the ball.”
On playing Amy Rodriguez:
“She makes our position really honest, she threatens them in behind and she makes them constantly have to think. I just felt like she had a goal in her tonight and she was due to come off at half time, but we stuck around for another ten minutes and thankfully it worked.”
On changing the line-up for today’s match:
“We’ve got players (Amy Rodriguez, Kelly O’Hara) that can’t quite go for 90 right now so we’re trying to balance that, which is tough. I’m very much a ‘horsies for coursies’ type of coach, I’ve always been that way. In this league; Portland are very different from Washington and North Carolina are very different from Washington, I think we just have to find the balance between who’s the right fit for the right game.”
FW Amy Rodriguez
On scoring the goal:
“It was a through ball in from Kelly (O’Hara) and it bounced off my defender, I got a lucky touch on it and had a one-on-one with the keeper. I remember staying calm in the moment and taking my time and being patient, waiting for the right shot to come out.”
On getting the start:
“I absolutely love that I had the chance to get out there and play today. It feels so good to be wearing the Royals jersey and help my team out.”
On working towards playing the full 90:
“Each game that I complete without pain or problems is a thumbs up and so far, so good.”
DF Becky Sauerbrunn
Points on tying, instead of the “elusive” three:
I thought tonight was going to be the night. A-Rod had a fantastic goal and just an unfortunate goal that they got, you know? We lost the ball in the final third and that’s always dangerous against a team like Portland. So, that’s unfortunate. I thought it was a hard-fought game I thought the momentum shifted a lot, they have it, we have it… But overall I thought it was a good soccer match, I thought it was entertaining and fun to play in. Yeah, but it was disappointing not to get three points. We really need those three points.
On Amy Rodriguez’s impact on the field:
She has the ability to stretch lines, I mean she can run in behind with her pace, but she can also check back, and she’s got the quality to hold the ball for us. For those few seconds that we need to get further up the field, she has that. She’s good at combing, she’s got a finishers touch, she’s composed. I mean she’s an excellent forward and I think you can tell when she plays that our whole dynamic changes. I think we played more in the attacking half than we have in any other game this season.
On Kelley O’Hara’s move to the attack:
I think Kelley has such an attacking prescreens so I think it was great to get her as forward as she was, and I think Sidney Miramontez and Becca Morris there you know very good outside backs and so I think we thought we were solid in the back. I think aside from that giveaway I never thought we were under it so much that we couldn’t handle it, I felt like we were very much in control so… It was great to give Kelley more of an attacking presence in that game. I mean she’s been raring to go, and I thought she made a big difference too, I thought she had a really good game.
On conceding a goal:
I was the one who played it to Desiree and I think we were trying to play out the back a little bit more, we don’t want to be too direct of a team. And she just had three people on her, and it was just we were stretched at the back, so Tobin kind of found some good space, and you know Tobin in the ’18, she’s going to finish that.
On the fan reaction to the goal:
It’s just so rewarding for A-Rod to get that goal, because you can see how hard she has been working. I know how hard it was to lose her in the KC season last year, and so to have that goal, and for it to be A-Rod I thought it was really special and you could see the excitement on her face, and it mean a lot to her. It’s just really unfortunate that couldn’t have been the game winner, that we couldn’t do that for her.
GK Abby Smith
On Amy Rodriguez’s impact on the field:
“Everyone knows A-Rod and they know the type of player she is. Just having her presence on the field is night and day. She’s the type of player no one wants to play against so it’s amazing having her back on the pitch. We could not be more excited for her to get the first goal in and keep going from there.”
On Kelly O’ Hara playing offensive vs defensive:
“It’s just different personnel but she is an offensive player and a diverse player. As a whole our defensive mindset is solid no matter who we put in the back line. Tonight, she did really well in the attacking half.
MF Katrina Gorry
On making her debut:
“I was not sure when I first got here or what the plan was for me. I flew in Wednesday and I was just excited to finally be here. I had sessions on Thursday and Friday which felt pretty good and I got a spot on the bench.”
On Salt Lake’s altitude:
“I didn’t really feel it the first few days but I definitely felt it during the game and I’m sure tomorrow will be a bit tough as well. The more I get used to it I think the better my performances will be.
On what she wants to bring to the Royals:
“I definitely want to be a threat to score. My angle is to come in and change the game. I tried to do that when I got on the ball and to spread the ball from side to side to create goal scoring opportunities. Hopefully you’ll see a bit more of that throughout the season.
On seeing familiar faces on the team:
“I knew a quite few of them and when I actually came I realized that I knew more of them. I’ve played against them at the international level and a lot of them have played in Australia. To come here it felt like home straightway. Everyone was so welcoming, and the facility is incredible. I feel lucky to be here.
On reaching out to fellow Australian and Jazz player Joe Ingles:
“Maybe, I don’t really watch too much basketball but I’m sure me being here and the Jazz doing so well I’ll hopefully get to a game or two.”