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In Their Own Words: “It shows we have the character, the desire, the ability to get back in games."

By Republic FC Communications, 08/23/20, 9:00AM PDT


See what the boss and the boys in Old Glory Red had to say following Saturday's 2-1 win at home over Timbers 2

In four straight fixtures, Republic FC have earned all three points in each match and Saturday night's performance was a first for Mark Briggs' men this season as SRFC came from a goal down to secure the dramatic win. 

After the contest, the gaffer and his squad were beaming with delight and had plenty of positives to reflect on following the victory. 

Head Coach Mark Briggs

On tonight’s match...
"Tonight was a tale of two halves to be quite frank. I think the first half was non-existent. No intensity. No desire. No passion. Not willing to get on the ball, the way that we wanted them. We made a few adjustments in midfield for the second half. Which I felt gave us a little bit more  of an advantage in the middle of the park and didn't give them so much space to play."

"And we became a little more aggressive and move the ball a lot quicker with a lot more intensity and score two goals what we should have scored more, we have to continue to work on that aspect of the game. Because we leave teams in games and that's a dangerous thing to be doing."

On Rafa Diaz’s performance...
"As a goalkeeper that's why you’re paid to do. You’re paid to make important saves at important times, and Rafa’s doing it in abundance at the moment. And I'm really happy for him. He's grabbed the shirt with both hands, and he continues to make big saves when we need big saves. So no, I'm really pleased for Rafa. He’s flying at the moment. You can see his confidence growing. The players trust him. I trust him."

On Shannon Gomez’ return to the pitch...
"I just pulled all the players in and gave them my thoughts on the game and gave them credit for their second half performance, and then I pulled Shannon in and just gave him the credit he deserves. Shannon's been through hell for the past year, and it's a mental challenge when you you go through what Shannon has gone through."

"To stay focused and stay strong and still continue to try and see the light at the end of the tunnel and Shannon's done that. And it was funny because when I called his name tonight, he looked at Jaime and said, “did coach just call my name?” With a big smile on his face and Jaime said yes and then his eyes lit up and he came jogging towards me. And that's what it meant for him so I'm over the moon for Shannon to get back on the field and Shannon's an important player he can add a lot to us. "

On the team’s turnaround after half...
"It doesn't always happen the way you want it to. You can’t always play the greatest football and you can't go out there and beat teams four or five nil every time you step on the field."

"So for us to be 1-0 down and could have been two zero down. It shows character it shows when we're in uncomfortable positions and when we're in uncomfortable moments, it shows that we have the character, we have the desire and we also have the ability to get back in games and put games in the direction that we want them to go in. You don't always want to go, one, zero down but I'm really happy with the character that we show to get back into the game. And obviously take the three points after being down."

Drew Skundrich

Overview of the match...
"Obviously great win, great team effort in the second to battle back from one nil down, and to get those goals that was huge. It showed immense character with the group. I'm really proud of how resilient we were on the field. We didn't start the game that we wanted to we didn't come out with the right energy and attitude. But we grew into the game we moved it side to side, kept the ball flowing, and we created chances and we took those chances so I'm happy that we won."

On Timbers 2 goal...
"I was holding midfield role, just for that play, and I saw in front of me some guys that in my opinion weren't working hard enough defensively we weren't shifting side to side we weren't on the same page weren't connected. So that was frustrating for me and I have to put that on myself as well because I wasn't talking to them at that moment telling them to shift to keep working. So that's something that I need to improve on and something that we need to improve on as a group. And once they scored I was furious I don't like conceding. I just tried to try to hold people accountable, and then it got better from there."

On the locker room at half...
"Briggs made some tactical changes, pushing me higher. Me and Darek were almost playing as two attacking mids and Roro was sitting deeper, because we wanted to press on we knew we had to go after the game. Roro was able to open up the game for us with his great range of passing. And we created chances from there, and we knew we had to hit the target with our chances. I had one earlier that the goalie saved, hit the post. That was unfortunate not to go in, but we knew we had to keep going, no matter what. And that's what I'm really proud of, from this group is our resilience to keep going for that first goal and then that second game-winner from Cam."

On his goal...
"I'm not sure how it got to Ash. But I just remember I saw him get it out wide and he's a player that will take his defender on 1-v-1and try to get a service in the box. I think Cam made a great run to the near post. So I was just falling behind, and the ball just skips through Cam and his defender and came straight to me and I just tried to redirect it on target and then it went in. "

On the team finding rhythm...
"Coming out of the break we wanted to focus more on the defensive side of things, trying to lock up in the back, trying to keep clean sheets, and we've done well with goals against thus far. So, as soon as we have that foundation, we wanted to create more chances to work on building out in practice to work on patterns, stuff like that. The finishing, getting on the same page team chemistry. That's something that we've been working on but we can't get away from the foundation that is keeping shutouts defending as a unit."

On Shannon’s return...
"He's an incredible guy. His mentality is awesome. He was he was grinding for the last year, you know a torn ACL is nothing easy to come back from. But he kept his head down. He worked so hard. And it's easy to just give up in those moments to feel bad for yourself but he didn't do that he kept pushing through everything day by day, it’s a long process every single player on the field congratulated him. Everyone was so, so happy so emotional for him to see him out in the field doing what he does doing what he loves to do it was incredible. He's an inspiration to all of us."

Shannon Gomez

Recap of tonight’s match...
"We've won of the past couple of games and tonight was one of those games that we really needed to keep it going, confidence wise and to keep building on great performances and to piece together all the good things we've been doing and training and working on."

"Personally for me was a memorable game, being out for so long and coming back and contributing to the team all over again it's just something spectacular to me and it’s an emotional day for me and hopefully I was an inspiration to somebody else tonight. The team did a great job coming back from behind to win the game and put it in a perfect position for me to come on to field. We're happy to get another win and keep the ball rolling."

On having his name called...
"It was a moment that shocked me. I heard him call my name and I was like he's definitely not talking to me, I'm gonna do more sprints, I'm just gonna mind my business. And he was like, yeah, I'm talking to you yeah get ready you’re going in and I was like, Oh my God my heart started beating really fast, the moments here. I got to be ready and right away I went into defensive mode, I was ready, just to tackle somebody and I'm thankful that he trusted me in that moment to return to the pitch and give all I can, even if it's a couple of minutes just him believing in me again is something amazing and I am very thankful to the club for that."

On Grinwis, similar injury and next steps...
"I'm 100% confident in Adam and this is one of the guys that didn't even know me when he came here and he just saw me injured when he got here. And right away I could tell like we connected, our energies were just you know intact and he would come and talk to me words of inspiration and just by the way he spoke I could tell this guy has an amazing spirit about him.  I spoke to him when he got injured and I said listen sometimes we question the most hard working guys and the guys that put their head down and give 110% for their team are the ones that ended up injured and you start questioning everything and sometimes we don't know what a plan is for us and we're lucky to have people around us that are going to go through this with us and he's been one of those guys that sat down with me from day one."

"He'll text me on my off day and he'd say hey man how's your day going and he's just been right by my side, most of the time and even my roommate, Jaime. I'm pretty sure with the people that are charge of us coming back to full fitness like Katie and Luke and Betty, these are people they're like mother figures, father figures to you and they really take care of you. I think with the right attitude and he's a model figure for that right attitude and I think he's gonna come back, 110%. He’s a great player but he’s been having a great attitude so far and no doubt he's coming back stronger and better from his injury."


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