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August 25, 2017

Patrick Vieira

Harrison, New Jersey

New York Red Bulls - 1, New York City FC - 1

Q. Patrick, I wanted to know about the midfield and its work tonight making sure it was posted through the outside for much of the game. What were you looking for for Alex and Mikey in particular on the inside?
PATRICK VIEIRA: I think it's not just about Mikey and Alex, I think. The Rodney ask Jack as well work really hard and they work well. Our game plan was to be really compact and not let them play in between the lines. And I think we managed to do it well. Even because of the quality of the teams, you have to concede a few chances. But I think when you look at the 92 minutes, I think we did quite well.

Q. Patrick, are you happy with the draw or did you feel like you were maybe fortunate kicking after the point?
PATRICK VIEIRA: I think if we look at the first half and we look at the position that they had, the only time they hit the post was when Alex was out of the field. But I will take the points. And I'm really happy with the points because we played against a really good team who make it really difficult for us. So I'm happy with the points, yes.

Q. You've played the Red Bulls four times in the past couple of months. Would you like to see them again in the playoffs?
PATRICK VIEIRA: We just have to get ourselves in the playoffs and then we'll see again soon who we're going to play. But, you know, you don't want to play against good teams and there's only good teams in this league. I think when you manage to be in the playoffs, that means you are doing well. And I think when you look at the Red Bulls and you look at the way they played today, it's a good side. It's a really strong team. And even if we won the two games in the league didn't make a difference, and of course they're taking their chances, us taking our chances.

But I think it was two good teams in the field, and it was a really good gamble for both, I think. We tried to stop their play and it was a good game of football.

Q. Just on the idea of trying to prevent teams for playing, for example, playing without the ball more so this year. How has the team developed that ability to play more defensively or not concede possession a little more often but still preventing?
PATRICK VIEIRA: I think it's the experience that we had. I think too many games we were really frustrating because we had the position, we had the chances and in the end we managed to get the three points.

So there are two parts of the game. It's when you're in position and when you're out of the position. I think when you're in position sometimes you can do good things. And the part of the game that we needed to improve was with the ball out of position. I think if you look at the last three games that we played, we are more solid as a team. When we are more solid it's a good sign. Then it's more important for us is to try to manage both aspects of the game so we can be even stronger as a team.

Q. (Inaudible)?
PATRICK VIEIRA: We have to wait until Monday. We'll have to do some exams on Monday to see how bad it is.

Q. Was it a calf injury?
PATRICK VIEIRA: Yes, it was a calf injury, yes.

Q. If you look at the last three games, Patrick, you probably haven't -- you've got five points. Two matches on the road out of those three getting the five points. But you probably haven't kept the ball the way you were normally used to. Is that a concern?
PATRICK VIEIRA: No, it wasn't a concern at all. Of course we want to keep the ball much better than we did today. But I think sometimes it's not always easy. And because of the team we were playing against they make it really difficult for us. I think what we didn't do well today is that when we are defending and we manage to read the ball, we lost it straightaway. Then we started to get frustrated and that was a problem especially in the first half.

But I think you have to give credit to the Red Bulls because they made it very difficult for us. I think we defended really well. We frustrated them a lot as well. Then we managed to score the goals, so I believe that was against the game. But at the end, we created and we played collectively quite well. Then when we scored the goals, I think that it was really difficult for us to maintain the result.

Q. As you solidify your place at the table, do you have to adjust your run here with the team or do you not have to adjust what you're doing and kind of keep pressing all the way through the longer the season takes?
PATRICK VIEIRA: No, I think what's important for us is to try to get the right game plan. Of course try to go on the field and try to win the game. But it's not -- you know, we play against good teams as well, and the thing that I love about the team this year is that we are getting a better balance between playing well, trying to make the right decision, and taking risks.

I think we've been less naive this year than we were last year. This is as well me understanding better me, better what I want from the players. That's why I believe we are a better team this year than we were last year. But this is a part of the game that we need to work and we need to improve, but I still believe that we are getting on the right one.

Q. Maxi added to his goal total tonight. Alex had another stellar game. I'm wondering ho you feel those two additions plus the on-goal has really changed the way your midfield has played this year after what we saw toward the end of last year in the playoffs?
PATRICK VIEIRA: Yeah, I think when you have good players around, players who can win balls and play when you're in the position, the game can be a bit noisy. But when you look at Mikey yesterday, I think he was really solid, and he helped Alex in the midfield quite really well.

So we have players that are going to international. We have players coming back from injuries. I think when we're going to have everybody ready, I think we can give ourselves a good chance to finish the league well.

Q. Just wondering on the penalty call, what is a soft call -- I'm not trying to help you add to the league's fines. But the call on the penalty kick, I just wondered your thoughts about it?
PATRICK VIEIRA: Did you see it?

Q. It looked like a soft call to me, but I'd like to see what you say?
PATRICK VIEIRA: I don't have to say anything more. It was really smart from Kljestan. I think he was on the ball. He was really smart. And he fooled everything. It wasn't a penalty at all. It was really soft. And when you look at David's header and you look at it, it was clearly a hand ball.

I'm disappointed because when you have the VR and you see the replay and keep a penalty, I'm just asking myself, why did we spend so much time opening our door for people to come to explain to us what is the VR job and what they're going to do and what will happen. It's really disappointing for us on that side.

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