Recap NYCFC Philly

In Quotes: NYCFC 3-1 Philadelphia

What a night it was in the BX... here are the best soundbites from the home locker room as NYCFC booked their place in the Eastern Conference semifinals...

Domènec Torrent

On Maxi Moralez’s performance…

“The performance tonight was amazing, Maxi was fantastic. Not only because he was able to score, the performance was very well. When we decided to play in between, they played fantastic. The last 20 minutes we decided to play with two strikers - David and Maxi and they played perfect as well.”

On choosing the starting XI…

“I don’t want to see anybody down on this team because we are a team. We can play in different ways. Jesus [Medina] has a good quality, but Ismael [Tajouri-Shradi] has another quality. When you are looking to play quickly, play behind them, maybe you decide it’s better to play this player over another player. I have confidence in both, and in everybody, but when you play the knockout game in the playoffs, you have to decide…I am very happy with [other players], but I decided to play with Ismael because last game they defended high and we can take advantage when they decided to play high. I have 2-3 days to analyze [Atlanta] and after that we’ll decide the best 11 to play the next game."

On Tajouri-Shradi’s opening goal…

“It’s important in the knockout games when you score a goal because we have two plans, if we scored a goal or if they scored a goal. The goal was fantastic, an amazing goal for Ismael to score but it’s very important because everyone knows what happens when we score a goal - keeping calm, we have time and we have to take advantage and we have to play different when they do. In knockout games, the team that scores quickly has more possibilities to win the game.”

On the supporters tonight…

“I want to thank our supporters because it’s not easy to come on [Halloween]. I expect for the next game - everybody is here. We are more comfortable and we are stronger when they are here.”

Alex Ring

Why is this an NYCFC team that can beat Atlanta over two legs...

“I think if you just look at the last two years, the games we’ve had against Atlanta have always been exciting. Two teams that want to play a very intense game and I’m looking forward to that. That’s what playoffs are all about, you know? I wouldn’t have it any other way. [At] some point you have to face them. I don’t care when that is. As long as we win.”

On it being a tough matchup…

“I wouldn’t expect anything less. Playoffs or regular season. I think those games against Atlanta for both teams will be on the highlights because you have two very good teams. And this matchup is always intense. I always look forward to this and it’s what you play for. It’s what you go to preseason for. It’s what I ran in Finland for when it was cold. So yeah, this is what I’ve been waiting for. The team that we’ve been working towards and looking forward to.”

On momentum heading into Eastern Conference Semifinals…

“We have a good momentum. Atlanta hasn’t played for a week now and I remember last year, when we didn’t play the week, it was hard to get into the game in Columbus when they played before us. So maybe we can take advantage, maybe not. It’s hard to say right now. We’ll just have to see on Sunday.”

David Villa

Talk about controlling two games in a row...

“I think obviously we are more focused right now and it’s not a secret that in the last month of the regular season, we did pretty bad. We had lost many important players. But after that, we refocused and we believed in the players, which is really, really important. And we are happy. We are happy because of the way we played today. We got to play Maxi after the injury. We got to play Yangel after the injury. It looks like we’re in a position where everyone is healthy.”

On quick turnaround to play Atlanta on Sunday...

“They are an amazing team and they did very well during the regular season. But when we play them again, we’ll be ready for them.”

How important is a positive result on Sunday...

“Yeah, because in this round of the playoffs, it’s important in the coaching first and it will result Sunday. We’ve struggled away. We know that it’s a game of 180 minutes and that for our fans and for us, we have to make sure that we have a good game on Sunday.”

Ismael Tajouri-Shradi

On his first playoff goal…

“Maxi had the ball then he lofted the ball and did a great pass, and I started running in the space. Villa did a little touch of the ball to me, he knew the runners were going towards him and it was a great combination. The first shot I tried to shoot, then I thought for the second shot I had to do it directly and it was a great goal.”

On first MLS playoff game…

Of course it was a very special game to me because it was a playoff game, and I am very, very happy about the win, and after I scored my first playoff goal. I’m very happy we got the win and I hope we continue this way.” 

Having the whole team back and healthy

“Of course we are a good team, we can play one this game and another the next game, we have many good options. Every player gives their best, like me I give my best. We do it together and we get the important win and now we will continue to Sunday.” 

Anton Tinnerholm

On facing Atlanta...

“It’s been great games. They were the better team when we played them away but it was a 2-2 draw, and we were way better than them at home but it was still 1-1 so it’s been intense and I think it’s been fun to watch. Tonight we’re going to enjoy and talk about this game and then tomorrow and Friday we’ll take a look at Atlanta.”

On the challenge and difficulties of playing three matches this week...

“We have a great staff who is taking care of us. Now is all about recovery and of course talking about small details about the opponent but now it’s more about the recovery and the staff is very important in these kind of situations where it’s tight with games.”

On the importance of keeping the crowd energized...

“They are very important for us, they’ve been the whole season! I like these kind of games where it’s win or lose, if you lose your out. I have some experience where we had to play the Champions League with Malmo and we really had the crowd behind us. I know how much it matters to play a 12th player on the pitch and I tried and I think the whole team tried to get them behind us. We show it in different ways but of course they are very important to us.”

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