Quotes: Coach Herdman readies for US friendly

Ahead of Canada’s first friendly on home soil in 2014, head coach John Herdman sat down with the media to answer questions and give his thoughts on the match versus the US on May 8th.

Canada SoccerOn playing in Winnipeg:

“The fans have done their part and it looks like we’ll have a great atmosphere for the game. This game is gold for us because you can’t replicate the feeling of stepping out in front of a truly passionate Canadian crowd that want you to do so well.”

On preparations at Winnipeg’s Investors Group Field:

“The people in Manitoba Soccer have done everything they can to provide us with a wonderful experience and welcome. Everything’s in great shape and the local teams that are helping put this together have done a wonderful job. The events team has everything set.”

On Desiree Scott’s first game in front of her hometown fans:

“Believe it or not, this will be the first time her mum and family are going to see her play live. I think for any player, that’s a wonderful achievement to be able to put that shirt on, not only in front of her hometown, but also the people that have helped you to where you get to. The team will sense that. They know it’s going to be important for Des. I think part of the team’s job will be to help her focus on being Desi, that destroyer, and doing those things that she does well and not overthinking this situation. It’s a massive thing for Desiree and we’ve all got a big smile on our face that the local kid can come back home and show her talent on the world stage.”

How match versus US is helping them prepare for 2015 Women’s World Cup:

“We put three tier one games back-to-back and that was really important for our planning. We had four months of residency together in Vancouver. We played predominately tier two teams in the Cyprus Cup and now it’s a big test against those tier one teams. This is where your true gap analysis comes in and you get a great sense of how far you are along that line toward success at the World Cup.”

On injuries and roster selection:

“Obviously, Lauren Sesselmann is a big loss to this team. At this stage, she’s actually our only naturally left-footed player in the system. To lose that platform on the ball and just her strength and tenacity off the ball is a big loss for the team.”

“We have some girls in Sweden that the turnaround for this game is only four days with the NWSL season. To bring people from Europe and have them fly in for two days for preparation and deal with jet lag, as well as the fact we wanted to give some of our younger players some good, quality experience, that also came into the decision-making as well.”

Melissa Tancredi / Photo by Canada Soccer - Jason Gemnich

Photo by Canada Soccer – Jason Gemnich

On Melissa Tancredi’s return:

“We brought Melissa back for this particular game. She’s close to returning to professional football and the NWSL and back full time with Canada. She’ll come back to this squad a little bit behind the eight-ball, but Melissa’s presence is always felt. She’ll be a big part of this team.”

“On the pitch, is she going to be able to play 90 minutes after not being involved for nearly two years? Absolutely not. But for her to be in and around the team off the pitch, she, for me, projects the mindset that you have to take against a team like the USA. She’s a tough competitor and for me, real Canadian grit.”

 

 

 

 


About the author:

Sandra Prusina is a journalist and broadcaster based out of Calgary, Canada. She has covered women’s soccer since 2010. She’s also a segment reporter for Olympic Broadcast Services, traveling to Vancouver, London and Sochi to work for the host broadcaster.

 

 

 

 

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