Notable Quotables | Pride vs. Reign FC

Notable Quotables | Pride vs. Reign FC

Orlando Pride Head Coach Marc Skinner 

Thoughts on the match

“I’m really proud of them tonight. We were woeful against Washington and tonight we were aggressive, we were front foot. We conceded two goals, which we’re not happy with of course, but I think for the first time the stats represent what I felt the game was like. They’ve got some excellent players and they’re going to go on and be a real threat in the playoffs, so for us to do that and come back shows a lot of character. It shows what we can do if we can get our players fit and healthy on the field, but tonight absolutely belongs to Toni [Pressley] and the amazing woman she is. I’m so glad the girls fought hard for her and for anybody that has suffered or will suffer from breast cancer. I think that it’s tremendous, tremendous that we have superwomen in terms of they have the ability to face that, come back and aggressively take on the challenge. I’m so, so proud of the girls fighting for that tonight and I haven’t got the words to express just how I feel about Toni because she’s Wonder Woman, so I suppose I’ll use that.”

On the energy at the start

“I think belief and what I mean by that is when you put Marta back in our starting lineup you want to give her the ball because she can hold the ball, she can play. It just gives you the ability to hold higher positions for a little bit longer so you’re not always passing backwards, square and sideways, so I think it’s that. Also, I think that they were extremely motivated to show people that this season has not been good enough and I think that internal motivation was driven tonight. That’s what we’ve asked for all year, that’s all I’ve asked for is can you press and then when they drop back into their own area because they’ve got to take a negative touch, can we press again. I think we did that tonight. We were more effective at that and we didn’t give them a second to breathe, we didn’t get them into any rhythm. If you look at the second game we played where they blew us away in 17 minutes, we didn’t let them get a rhythm [tonight] and I’m so pleased at how we did that. I think that was the key to this, the belief that they could do it and that’s all I’ve ever asked for all season.”

On the brightest moment of the season

“That’s a really good question and I don’t know if I’ve got the...I think when I reflect at the end of the season I’m sure there will be a lot of things that we’ll learn from and there’ll be good things to have. It maybe sounds a little bit cheesy because of the night and it being how it is and so on, but to see Toni [Pressley] and to see Sydney [Leroux] come and so quickly come back to doing the thing that they love and the thing that they’re so good at so quickly. Just an amazing, it’s a human feat, it’s not soccer, it’s not anything like that. When I reflect, I’m sure that’ll be the highlight of my season that we’ve had a player beat cancer and then come back so quickly. Look how brilliant physically she looks on the field, it’s amazing. That beats any football moment that’s happened this year. I don’t care if it sounds cheesy, but that probably will be my standout moment and we need to take that energy, take that focus into next season, but then add the quality and add people to this team and then take it on and be really aggressive.”

Orlando Pride Forward Marta 

Thoughts on the match

“First of all, I believe that we deserved to win of course, but I am happy that I got to play and to help my team and especially for using this moment to do something for this cause. Besides that, I believe that we deserved to win this game and end the season with a win.”

On her goal 

“At that moment I thought ‘finally the ball hit the net’, after so many tries. I felt relieved when the ball got in because we were always looking for the goal, because of the situation of the game at that time and for Toni’s return. I believe that we didn’t deserve to lose this game, we deserved to tie and even chase a win so at that moment I felt relieved when the ball got in because we created a lot of chances before that didn’t conclude in a goal.”

What her offseason plans are 

“A lot of work, a lot of work. Since I have a couple of months off from the start of next season, I have some business work that I will have to do like commercials but I also have the national team now in November and December so it will not be a calm offseason because I will be working the whole time. I believe that I will only have some free time closer to Christmas and New Year’s just so I can have one or two weeks off. Even during the trips, I will be working out to prepare myself, I’ve been in touch with our fitness coach from here and with our fitness coach from the national team so the season just ended in terms of the competition but the training will keep going because I want to feel great next year.” 

Orlando Pride Defender Toni Pressley 

Thoughts on the match

“First of all, I think it’s great to end on a positive and get a point out of the game. I think the girls did so well tonight. From the moment the first whistle blew, so exciting to watch. Rachel [Hill]’s goal was unbelievable, and then to finish with Marta’s was just so fantastic. It was just amazing to be back out there.”

On getting the captain armband from Ashlyn Harris

“Just so surreal you know, she’s someone that I love dearly and have so much respect for. She’s such a great leader and for her to hand that over to me in that moment was so special. It was a special moment and it’s something that I will never forget.”

On how it felt having the whole stadium’s support

“It felt amazing to have everyone be so supportive and be behind me and just give me that extra push to get on the field. I think it’s a testament to how wonderful our fans are, they stick it out with us every single game and just to have them it means the world.”