Chivas USA plunged out of SuperLiga Sunday when Pachuca and Santos Laguna tied 1-1 in San Jose in the night’s second game. Chivas USA needed Santos Laguna to beat Pachuca to stay alive in the competition.
It was difficult to conduct interviews with Chivas USA players after the 1-1 tie with the Revs simply because they couldn’t really say much considering their future in the tournament was being decided hundreds of miles away as they spoke.
But here’s Assistant Coach Mike Matkovich (subbing for Preki who is tending to a family emergency back home in Europe) on giving up the equalizer:
“Obviously we are disappointed. We’re 12 minutes away (from winning), we lose a mark on a dead ball, we give up a soft goal. We’ve got a guy on the post and the goalkeeper gets his hands on it and then it squeaks in. … I thought we were the better side, I thought we created better chances, no disrespect for them, but things didn’t go our way today.”
Jesse Marsch wasn’t too happy about it either: “
That was a terrible goal to give up,” he said “One of the worst goals we’ve given up in a really big game.”
On the other hand:
“I think this was one of our best games of the year,” (Gawd, I hope he’s kidding because it wasn’t pretty to watch). “If we played like that more often I feel like we can win a lot of games.”
But not this one. Or SuperLiga.
A common complaint was the atrocious field, which was dry, had huge bare spots and generally looked like those Budweiser horses had been filming a few commercials on it lately. A Soccer United Marketing official observed the pitch was fine two months ago, but looked even worse two weeks ago than it did Sunday. He had no idea what happened in between.
“The field was terrible,” said Revs goalkeeper Matt Reis. “We put a bid in to get (the game) and I don’t know why we didn’t. We may as well have played it in the parking lot.”
New England Coach Steve Nicol agreed:
“To play a game like this on this field I think was a disgrace. … There is no way you can play football on that field. It’s meant to be a big tournament, an important tournament and there’s no way it should have been played on this field.”
Complete game story.
A picture gallery of the action is here.
So the semifinals are set:
MLS champion Houston Dynamo hosts defending SuperLiga champion Pachuca at Robertson Stadium July 29.
The Revolution hosts Atlante at Gillette Stadium July 30.