Quote sheet: Dynamo, Sporting KC discuss Saturday's game

The Dynamo and Sporting Kansas City played to a spirited 1-1 draw Saturday at Sporting Park in Kansas City. Courtesy of Sporting KC communications, here is a transcription of postgame quotes from both teams.

Houston Dynamo manager Owen Coyle

On Houston's 1-1 draw against Sporting KC…
I think we knew coming into Sporting Park it was always going to be a tough game. They have an unbelievable home record and one they should be very proud of. So we knew we were going to have to play very well and we did. Sporting Kansas City had one attack on goal in which they scored from. I think it may have been a soft foul, but having said that, it was a wonderful delivery and Dom Dwyer is an outstanding player one of the top players in MLS. Many teams would have felt sorry for themselves, but we picked ourselves up and, truth be told, we punished Sporting Kansas City off the park in the first half. We should have had two or three goals on the back of that.

We then came out in the second half with the same endeavor except I think it was a bit more even. Sporting had one or two chances of their own. As I said before, you know the quality of us. We scored a very good goal and then found ourselves down to 10 men.

On the rivalry between the two sides and the red cards in the previous three meetings…
I can only judge from my three games and we are the team that’s not finished with 11 in all three games. Tonight, in real time I didn’t think it was [a red card]. Nathan Sturgis, he never led with his studs and the only thing he was guilty of was being a little bit late. He never led with studs and never looked to endanger the opponent. But there is no doubt there is a fierce rivalry between the sides and both clubs have fantastic history and history they should be proud of. They are both very special clubs within MLS. So that’s always going to lead to a good intensity in the game.

Houston Dynamo midfielder Brad Davis

On Houston’s 1-1 draw against Sporting KC…
It was a good game. I thought our group was really good tonight. We gave Sporting very few chances. We’ve talked about them being one of the better teams in the league at spreading teams out with the ball, and they have some good, creative players. I think we did very well to stay tight to them and disrupt their game. We had a couple chances in the first half to actually go up. Overall I thought our game plan was attacked very well, and I’m extremely happy of this group tonight for the effort that was put in.

On Houston responding to a 1-0 halftime deficit…
At that point we know [we’re in the game]. We know if we’re playing well or we’re not playing well, and we knew we had some chances. We just had to stay with it, not get frustrated and continue to push. Fortunately we were able to get our goal. It’s a difficult place to come and play—we know that—and when we got that goal later in the game, it was very important that we were smart and locked it down and come away with a point at that point. We did a good job.

On assisting Ricardo Clark’s equalizing goal from a set piece…
Tonight we didn’t have many other [set pieces] in a really dangerous spot—maybe one. I know (Ricardo Clark) is going to attack the ball. They actually were putting a couple guys on David Horst, so I actually wanted to miss him. I told the other guys to try to get away and separate themselves because David was a guy we were trying to pick out who they had been marking. I told them, “Try to get yourself free” and luckily it worked out.

Houston Dynamo forward Will Bruin

On Houston and Sporting KC playing another hotly contested match…
It’s always a battle every game. Every time we play it’s a clash and both teams’ intensity rises. Both teams scored on a set piece—that’s how tight the margins are. It’s always a fun game and this lived up to it.

On Houston responding to a 1-0 halftime deficit…
I thought we played well in the first half. Obviously they had a restart goal from a header five minutes in—that’s not the ideal start. But instead of putting our heads down, we kept playing and we had chances. I could have scored on a little half-breakaway [in the first half]. We never put our heads down. We kept battling and found a way to score and even it up and leave with a point.

On the Houston-Sporting KC rivalry…
This is my fifth year in the league and we’ve always played them in the postseason. Every game we’ve played against them is a battle. I think we play somewhat similar styles with the mentality and the physicality and the pressing. When you get two teams that high-press and play strong, it’s going to be a battle.

Sporting Kansas City manager Peter Vermes

On Sporting KC's performance...
It wasn’t a good game for either team. It was a very scrappy game, back and forth. We sure did give a lot of chances away. We created some good ones, but not enough. Both teams were just scrappy.

On the status of Roger Espinoza...
He just got whacked pretty good. That’s why he came out; he just couldn’t go. He got jammed right in the shin. Obviously, we’ll have to see over the next few days what it’s like.

On Sporting KC's rivalry with Houston...
The game is with grown men. It’s physical and it’s emotional. I think it’s two teams that have always been in the mix late in the season and two teams that are getting ready to compete for MLS Cup. We wind up in the same conference, so we might wind up seeing each other in some big matches all the time. Both teams are extremely competitive. With that being said, there’s going to be fireworks sometimes. I’m glad to see that our guys kept their composure.

On the possibility of replays in MLS and if he agrees with their implementation within the game...
Absolutely, 100 percent. It was good because also when you look at the Nemeth goal, he was offside. It wasn’t by much but he was off. It’s great to know that he was off and there wasn’t a mistake made. Hopefully sometime it’s going to change, sooner rather than later.

On the field conditions playing a part in the match:
It was choppy, it was. But the great thing is it’s not as bad as our other field was. By the time we get back here for the next game, I assume it’ll be a heck of a lot better because it’ll have a chance to settle and they’ll be able to do a little more work on it. It was the right thing that we did. We needed to get a new field in here ASAP. The other field was really dangerous. For these guys, and honestly I laugh about it, they’re used to playing on a pool table all the time. For me, that was like a Wembley back in my day. So for these guys, it’s hard for them to play on it, but I could’ve played on that thing all day long.

On set pieces given up late in the game...
Is it troubling? It ticks me off. I hate giving up any set pieces in any game. But we scored a great one. I thought we were dangerous in and around the box many times.

Sporting Kansas City forward Dom Dwyer

On receiving a yellow card in the first half…
I’m pretty sure I kept my hands down by my side the whole time. I knew I had four yellows so I didn’t want to get another. I’m very frustrated that he gave me one for that. I don’t want to say too much more, I don’t want to get myself in trouble, but I think you can see for yourself on that one.

On Dwyer’s first takeaway from the game…
Obviously we are a little bit frustrated. It wasn’t the result we wanted. We wanted to get three points. We’ll take the positives out of it, get the point and move on to the next one.

On the match’s controversial calls…
Everyone is human. The refs make mistakes. It happens. Hopefully they’ll watch it back and learn and it’ll be different next time.

On if it was tough to get into a rhythm with the controversial calls…
Not really. The field was challenging and that slowed the rhythm of the game a little bit. The ref was fairly consistent with certain calls here and there. Some were a bit soft but it was pretty good for both sides. The lineman could’ve helped him out too. Sometimes it doesn’t fall your way.

Sporting Kansas City defender Matt Besler

On what the official told Besler following the no-call inside the box late in the match…
He told me he judged it to have hit his (Luis Garrido) hip.

On the first thing Besler can takeaway from the game…
Sloppy game. It was disappointing not to get a win at home, but we have to get ready for the next game.

On the condition of the new field…
We can’t use the field as an excuse because it’s the same for both teams. We’re hoping and we’re being told that it’s continuing to get better.

Postgame questions and responses from Referee Jorge Gonzalez

Q: Why was a handball not called on Luis Garrido in the 94th minute?
A: It was judged not to be deliberate.

Q: How can a handball be judged not deliberate when the player’s arm is in an extended position?
A:
The arm was judged to be in a natural playing position.

Q: Why were cautions issued to Dom Dwyer and Tyler Deric late in the first half?
A:
They both committed acts, which in the opinion of the referee, showed a lack of respect for the game (e.g. aggressive attitude and inflammatory behavior).

Q: What was the reason for overturning the penalty call against Tim Melia in the first half?
A:
After consultation with the assistant referee, it was judged that Tim Melia fairly challenged for the ball.