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Chicago Fire 3 - New England Revolution 2: The Basics

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Chicago Fire: Sean Johnson; Dan Gargan, Josip Mikulic, Jalil Anibaba, Gonzalo Segares; Marco Pappa, Pavel Pardo, Logan Pause ©; Sebastian Grazzini (Baggio Husidic 25'); Patrick Nyarko (Diego Chaves 66'), Dominic Oduro (Orr Barouch 77')

Substitutes not used: Jon Conway, Yamith Cuesta, Corben Bone, Daniel Paladini

New England Revolution: Matt Reis; Kevin Alston, Franco Coria, Darrius Barnes, Chris Tierney; Ryan Guy, Benny Feilhaber, Shalrie Joseph ©, Kenny Mansally (Kheli Dube 57'); Milton Caraglio, Zach Schilawski (Diego Fagundez 71')

Substitutes not used: Bobby Shuttleworth, Otto Loewy, Zak Boggs, Pat Phelan, Ryan Kinne
Scoring Summary
CHI - Sebastian Grazzini (penalty kick) 5'
CHI - Dominic Oduro (Sebastian Grazzini) 9'
CHI - Patrick Nyarko (unassisted) 30'
NE - Ryan Guy (unassisted) 90'
NE - Ryan Guy (Milton Caraglio, Diego Fagundez) 92'+
Misconduct Summary

NE - Franco Coria (Caution; Reckless Foul) 27'
NE - Darrius Barnes (Caution; Dissent) 46'+
CHI - Dan Gargan (Caution; Delaying a Restart) 76'

CHI - Baggio Husidic (Caution; Tactical Foul) 86'

Referee: Michael Kennedy

Referee's Assistants: Kermit Quisenberry, Paul Scott

4th Referee: Jasen Anno

Attendance: 14,567

Highlights and quotes after the break


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Frank Klopas, Chicago Fire interim head coach

On the result:

"In the second half, being up 3-0 and tough stretch ahead of us, I had the opportunity to give some guys a break and get everyone involved in the game. I think a good lesson for us to learn in a game like this is that a game is never over until it's over."

On Grazzini's injury:

"It's tough, he's an important player. We have a tough stretch of games, including the U.S. Open Cup Final in between them, and depending on the outcome it's going to be impossible for all those guys to play 90 minutes. Hopefully he will he recover; I don't know the extent of how serious the injury is. We'll have to see how he feels tomorrow. Sometimes when you bring players in mid-season like that, they've stopped their season and haven't gone through a proper preseason, they just go right into it. We always have to be aware and be careful with the amount of training and games, but he's a guy who wants to play and make a difference, which he did today. It's just very unfortunate because he's a very important player to the team."

On New England's comeback:

"The important thing is that we won the game. We'll look at the tape and we'll talk about this because we've got to have a better finish to the game."

On winning four the last five league games:

"I've said before that for me, more than anything, is the focus of the players and the work that's being done every day on the training pitch because that's where games are won. The focus, the concentration and the commitment everyday to do the little things better and time has lead to the team's success. We added some players during the season and they are gelling, there's an understanding now of how we're playing and all of that takes time."

On Nyarko's performance and first goal of the season:

"I was very happy for Patrick (Nyarko) because I told him many times that he needs to be a little more selfish, especially now that he's playing up top and is getting more opportunities. He's always looking to make that pass, but sometimes he needs to be selfish and finish plays by himself. I was very happy for him because when he gets assists, and today a goal, it helps his confidence. He's a guy who with or without the ball helps the team."

On Baggio Husidic's performance:

"My message to him was that he needs to be a guy who gets to the ball and makes passes like Sebastian (Grazzini), because at first he was looking to get behind a little more and left a little bit of a gap. "

Patrick Nyarko, Chicago Fire forward

On New England's comeback:

"The last few minutes we lost concentration and they made a couple of goals, which made it tight at the end. Overall it was a great team performance and the guys came out firing and did a great job, with the exception of the last couple of minutes."

On scoring his first goal of the season:

"It feels great; I do anything to help the team win. It feel s great to score and it feels better to help the team win the game. We came out with a game plan, we needed to attack and we did a great job of executing the plan. It was a great first half, probably our best first half of the season. I think we controlled it in the second half, but at the end we just let our guard down."

On scoring first:

"We realized that if we jump on teams early, especially at home, we set the tone. We got an early goal, settled down and tried to play our game, and that's always the key. Sometimes it's hard to get that goal once the other team gains confidence, so we figured out if we go at a team right away and try to unsettle them by scoring a goal, then we can settle down and play our game. That's been the mentality we've adopted and it's worked for us.

On playing more selfishly:

"As a striker you have to do that, but that's not my play. I like to make plays by finding people in the right spot to get us a goal. Maybe sometimes I could be, but I don't look at it from that standpoint. On the goal today I could have passed it down, but I think he was offside, if he wasn't I would have passed. But that's my game - unselfish. If I need to take the shot, I will take it, but I look to find ways to help the team win the game."

On winning four of the last five games:

"I think we have finally found our identity. Frank (Klopas) keeps telling us, ‘Do what you can do, everyone is gifted with different abilities and to play within yourself,' and I think the guys are doing that. We've found a good game plan and we're sticking to that. We're doing a good job and the tam is getting hot. That's been the mentality in training - everything is coming up sharp, everything is competitive and we're carrying that onto the field."

Sebastian Grazzini, Chicago Fire midfielder

On his injury:

"I just got a little stiff, the same as the game against Richmond, but I feel alright. I'm going to work hard to get back as soon as possible. I'm not sure if I will return for the match versus Salt Lake City because I haven't been evaluated by the doctors yet, but hopefully tomorrow I will be able to get that taken care of. I hope to be back by Wednesday because I would like to play and the team needs me."

Sean Johnson, Chicago Fire goalkeeper

On the result:

"I feel like we've gotten a good stretch going here the last five games. Obviously it's crucial now that we play for every game of the season, and we have to keep that mentality for the final push. Momentum is definitely important going into this final road trip we have coming up. We're looking forward to the game against Salt Lake City on Wednesday and a quick turnaround. All around it was a good performance tonight. The two goals at the end were disappointing because you always want to keep a clean sheet. At the end of the day it's still three points and I'm happy with our result and getting the win because that's the most important thing. "

On his eight saves:

"It was just one of those games. Sometimes there are games where you don't have much to do and other games where you keep pretty busy and I do my best keep the team in it."

On the two late goals:

"They made a push. We weren't exactly equal to them at the end. They came out and were really pushing for a couple of goals, but we came out with the win. Now we just need to get back to practice and work on a few things - closing out games is important, in the last few games we've given up some second half goals and that's something we need to correct. I think that's something we can fix in practice, so it's a matter of getting back to training and getting those things fine tuned for the games we have remaining."

New England Revolution Head Coach Steve Nicol

On the result and the injury time at the end of the game:

"Well, that's the question isn't it? There's a lot of questions from today and certainly that is one of them. Why was there only two minutes is beyond me. It could have mattered. We've done it here before; been down 3-1 here before and we've scored two goals in injury time to make it 3-3, so we're not talking fairy stories here, we've done it. But, the reason we lost the game was because we gave three bad goals away. Well, they weren't bad goals but ridiculous goals. A couple of decent balls through and the whole set up by us, so we don't want to take that away from Chicago but they didn't do a whole lot to hurt us. We really hurt ourselves more than anything."

New England Revolution Defender Chris Tierney

On giving up two goals in the first ten minutes:

"We made two bad mistakes early on and it was tough to get back into the game. Those two quick goals killed us. Two mistakes that we probably could have avoided and that's the frustrating part."

On dealing with Oduro's and Nyarko's speed:

"They are a handful, those two. They are always going to be buzzing around. They both have pace that can hurt you so if you're not smart about it, I think we might have been a little too high to start the game and we left some gaps in behind. Obviously their pace is going to kill you when you're running one on one. It's not going to be a good outcome."

On scoring two goals in injury time:

"That's the frustrating part. We actually looked decent going forward and I would say we had the majority of the chances and I think we had the better share of possession. That's the really frustrating thing. Like I said, I don't think we were played off the park today. I think with those two mistakes we shot ourselves in the foot. It wasn't so much being beaten as it was beating ourselves."

On the team's mindset going into 3 home games to close out the season:

"It's just throwing caution into the wind at this point. Things are looking dire for playoffs so we have to go out there with a nothing to lose attitude. We have to go forward, take people on, and take chances. If we do that I think we have enough quality like we showed, that we can score goals, and we've been scoring goals lately but we have to put it together for 90 minutes.

New England Revolution Midfielder Ryan Guy

On what he was feeling when he scored two goals in injury time:

"I was just thinking how many seconds are left, to see if we could get another one and try to bring it back. It was bittersweet to be honest with you. It was nice to get my first couple MLS goals but also to lose like that, on basically three mistakes, really was a shame."

On whether the 3-2 score line was a fair result as opposed to a 3-0 score line:

"Absolutely. I think so. I think based on the way both teams played, maybe 3-2 was a better result. A good result, a fair result. They had a good first half and we had a good second half. A funny game sometimes."

New England Revolution Midfielder Benny Feilhaber

On going down 2-0 inside the first ten minutes and not an easy situation to come back from:

"No, even before that obviously going down 1-0, being blamed for a bad pass typically I won't make that pass in the middle of the field. I am definitely one to blame for that first goal. Doesn't really matter me saying it now but obviously it got us going in the wrong direction right off the bat. My fault there. When we go down 3-0, there's one thing you can really say about our team and this has really been the story the whole season, is that the guys don't stop fighting. It's good to see that. We really killed ourselves in the first half today and didn't give ourselves too much of a chance to win. Like I said, though, everyone on the team really works hard and that's always a positive thing to see."

On the game plan to deal with Oduro's and Nyarko's speed:

"I think we all said that in the beginning before the game started. Those are the two guys that really gets their attack going and the two guys that could be dangerous against us. We didn't do a good enough job of keeping them from having those dangerous runs but at the same time they are really good players. They're going to get behind you once and a while and we didn't deal with it very well. They played well. I think overall we did a lot of the things we haven't been doing, which is keep the ball and get the ball in the other end, and get some corner kicks, free kicks and balls in the box, but goals are what matter. They scored one more goal than we did. It's frustrating. It's been a frustrating season and it's not going to get any easier down the road so we just have to keep going. Mistakes will always kill you. Obviously we made one too many today."

On how he felt about the team's offensive performance:

"I think there's always positives, but there's always negatives as well. If you create that many chances, you have to.....we scored two goals but it's really last dying minutes of the game. More often than not, those two goals are only going to come in the dying minutes in the game if.....If it's a 1-0 game, it's going to be tough scoring two goals like that. With them up 3-0, what those two goals mean is not much. So if we create that many chances, we have to start putting more away or at least make the keeper make better saves. We create the chances but we really don't have that finishing touch right now. That's a killer as well. I don't think that's the main problem we have today. It was our start, bad pass by me and that led to the first goal."

On Ryan Guy's performance:

"It's great to see that. I'm really happy for him. He's a good friend of mine on the team. He hasn't had too many chances to prove himself. I think this is only his second start. Besides those two goals I think he did really well. He tried to go down the line when he was able to, get really good crosses off, good cutbacks as well, found some good passes into me and Shalrie [Joseph] and he was rewarded for being in the right place at the right time and finishing his two chances. That's great to see and hopefully we get to see more of him. I think he's a guy that is always going to give 100%, that's for sure. I think everyone can see that. I'm really happy for him.