Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Western Conference Press Event

There was another gathering of press types on Tuesday at Rio Tinto Stadium. The goal of course is to give sound bytes for print and TV to help build momentum for the team (and sell tickets) as the final home playoff game for the season approaches.

RSL President Bill Manning spoke first. He spoke briefly but tried to put where we are at in perspective.

Coach Kreis spoke second. He mentioned that he had only reached the finals twice in his 11 year career. He also mentioned that Robin Fraser had spoken to the players a few weeks back and mentioned that the coaching staff has believed in the players all year long, and that now they need to really believe in themselves. Since that time, they seem to have done so.

Nick Rimando and Dema Kovalenko spoke as players who have reached (and won) the MLS Cup before. They reiterated that this is a rare opportunity and that the team needs to capitalize on it.

The final speaker was GM Garth Lagerway who stole the show. He gave a passionate speach about the current coaching staff and their involvement in the 96 playoffs. Garth was a rookie at the time, making it to the Conf final and just assumed that he would be back again at some point, but never made it. He also gave a plea to all fans who have supported the team to come out en masse to the game and to cheer the team loudly.

After the speeches the players broke off into individual discussion with the media. The consensus was that this may be a rare opportunity and they need to "Seize the Day". There was also a consensus that it's not about what NY can do on the field - if RSL just plays their game, they will come out on top.