They Said It

💬 Emily Madril: Orlando Pride 'played our hearts out' in gutsy win over Angel City FC

Orlando Pride Head Coach Seb Hines

Opening statement

“A monumental result today. I think we showed a different side to us. It wasn’t pretty from our side, but Adr[iana] takes a shot and it is a great finish. You are 1-0 up and we weathered a lot of their attacks. Angel City played well, they put us under a lot of pressure and made us defend and the players stood up to the challenge. It is not an easy environment to come into but most importantly we come away with three points and keep moving up that table.” 

On how gratifying this win is 

“I said to a lot of the players at the end that if you look back at the start of the season, we lost these games. When teams would put balls in the box and react and defend and going through those experiences in the start of the seasons set us up for today’s game. I was super proud of the players having stood up to the challenge. They showed a lot of character, and we keep moving forward. There have been games we dominated and hadn’t got the result that we deserved, but today and at this stage of the season, the three points are what is most important. We keep moving forward and it is important that we keep this momentum. We have had some really good results of late and the players are still hungry and want more and that is important where we are this late in the season.” 

On the play of the outlet players 

“You have to learn to win in different ways. Think about Angel City and they have been unbeaten in their last 11 games, they are in terrific form, and this was a playoff match in a sense. We have always been threatening in transition even when we have been in low-mid block situations where we have been hard to play through, we have always had that outlet with Adri, Marta, Messiah [Bright], Ally [Watt] and we caused Angel City a lot of problems in that transition. I still believe that we could have been up even in the first half. I know Marta will want that chance back and nine times out of ten she scores it. Ally was threatening in her positions. It is a great place to be to have so many different ways of playing and trying to get results from it.”

Orlando Pride Defender Emily Madril 

Opening statement 

“That was a tough game. It felt like 90 minutes of defending, but I think the main thing that we all feel is that we are just so proud of everyone’s performance tonight and everyone's commitment to just work hard for each other. We needed everybody tonight to get that win. I think we are all excited to get that first game of these last three games won for that playoff push.” 

On the communication and the camaraderie of the team in the final 15 minutes of the match 

“I think we all had to do it together. We are all screaming at each other trying to get our marks situated and trying to make sure that we took care of everyone and just played our hearts out in our defending box. That is the only thing we could do to win this game. We are screaming at each other because we want the same thing and that is to win this game.” 

On recovering from turnovers in the midfield 

“I think we made it a little bit harder on ourselves than we needed to by giving the ball away. Maybe it was just the environment, it is a tough place to come here and play and they had been on an unbeaten streak for a couple games, who knows what it was tonight. We definitely made it a little harder on ourselves, but again it is the commitment to keep the ball out of our net. Honestly, I think we got a little bit lucky, I think they had more shots than us and more possession I imagine, but that is how it goes sometimes. I can’t fault our effort tonight. I think we all did it together and it just went our way this time.”

Orlando Pride Defender Kylie Strom 

Opening statement 

“It obviously wasn’t pretty, but I think we showed a lot of character and a lot of grit. We grinded it out, we bent but we didn’t break. The last game we played them in the beginning of the season, we gave up some points and let up a late goal, so it was a really big mentality test for us. I am really proud of the way the team defended.” 

On the message at halftime 

“We needed to take care of the ball a lot better. We were causing ourselves our own problems. Seb [Hines] said at halftime, don’t make this a tennis match. Don’t make this back and forth and turn it into a transition game. Defending we were gritty and had a high tempo, I think we just needed to find a way to calm down and possess. Like I said, it wasn’t pretty, but we take the three points and move forward and learn from this and take care of the ball better in the future.” 

On the communication and energy of the backline 

“The energy was great. We were locked in. This is a tough stadium to play in, it is really loud and hard to hear each other so you have to be on the same page. Every little thing, every little step matters. We were shouting and we were screaming, and we just have to trust each other that we are going to be in the spots that we are expected to be in. It is not just the backline, it is the midfield and the forwards, we defended as a team today which is really, really great.”

Orlando Pride (9-10-1, 28 points) at Racing Louisville (5-6-9, 24 points)

When: Friday, October 6, 7:30 p.m.

\_Where: \ _Lynn Family Stadium, Louisville, KY

TV: FOX35 Plus (Locally), Paramount+ (Nationally, subscription required)