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May 11, 2024

Frank Klopas

Chicago, Illinois, USA

Press Conference

St. Louis 3, Chicago 1

Q. Just the slow start, St. Louis coming out and getting a goal so fast, what do you think contributed to that, and just, you know, the rivalry game?

BRADLEY CARNELL: Yeah, it's a slow start. We talked about it. We prepared all week.

We told them what to expect. Regardless of the shot, the guy can hit a great shot but I'm just saying, I think the first half, our ability to compete and win duels, that wasn't good enough. You know, we did create two big chances that I feel we need to score. We need to score on those chances.

But our ability to compete, forget it. We can talk tactics all we want but for me, everything starts from that. And we came in, we addressed some things with the guys. We talked about it, and then, look, we go to the second half. We had a good start. Really good start.

Again, it's just the little things: Our positioning, arguing with the referee; they play quick. We've got to cut that stuff. But the most important thing for me is coming out there, we need to compete and we need to fight, and forget about sometimes tactics and this or that, and that's stuff that's in players control. We need to bring that energy for 90 minutes to turn these things around. There's no secret. That's the only thing that I can tell you.

Q. This is difficult for me to ask but it was around this time last year that big changes were made by the Fire. Do you feel there's anything big that needs to change?

FRANK KLOPAS: That's not a question for me, you know. I think for me, I believe in the players, 100 percent. We just have to make sure that we go to every game and we get the best out of the players. They need to come in with that kind of mentality and attitude. If we go into games and you know, you are looking at guys and you say, who really stood out tonight, and you can count some guys on your finger, it's going to be difficult. Is the quality there? Are the players there? Yes.

Again, we created over two and a half, expected goals. Hugo scored which is great, in the box. Loose ball. He was very active, and I think that was really good for him.

But then we have other clear chances that I think we need to do better. But you know, again, I go back: Without the ball now, the chances don't fall in. Our ability now to give up three goals again. Makes it really difficult to win games.

The season is young, Alex. The season is young, my friend. That's the only thing I can tell you. I can only regroup and get ready. I'm glad we have a midweek game on Wednesday. We just have to regroup and find a way to get out of this. We're trying to find solutions. That's the only thing I can tell you.

Q. The Apple broadcast team was very critical tonight and kind of mentioned things like things are unravelling and wheels are falling off. How do you keep it together when the outside noise is starting to get louder and the national broadcasters are going to be critical? How do you keep this in home and not get that to the guys? How do you keep this together when the outside noise is kind of saying things are unravelling and wheels are falling off? How do you keep everyone still focused and not kind of tuned out and not listening to that sort of noise?

FRANK KLOPAS: Listen, that's broadcasters. They come and they do a game and then they can say. They are not there every day in training to see what takes place and where the group is and stuff like that.

I don't see anything unravelling. Yes, the results haven't been there, that's for sure. For me, it's early in the season. The only thing I can tell you, there's no unravelling here. We have to go back tomorrow and regroup and get ready for Wednesday.

So they do the game. It's easy to -- I think to evaluate. I mean, if you're honest, I said -- you watched the game today?

Q. Yeah, I watched the game today.

FRANK KLOPAS: So did we create chances today?

Q. Yes.


Q. I didn't agree personally with a lot what was said. I wanted to throw that in also --

FRANK KLOPAS: No, no, no, I can't -- but I don't listen to the broadcast; if I listen to what people say or this or that. It's a little bit of a shame. We start the game and Vassilev hits a shot, okay, you give them that.

And then I talked about, clear, where I see the game. I have to see it again, but I felt like as far as just winning duels, I think that, you know -- I think they came ahead of that but I think even in the first half, we had two crystal clear chances to score. You know, we put one of those in, maybe that changes the game and the momentum, and right before the half, where we take -- you know, before the half, 1-1. We came out, we scored the goal.

You know, unfortunately we had some injuries. We had to make changes again with Kellyn and Allan, and then we tried to find ways to push the game like we did. For the most part, I felt the guys pushed the game and worked hard. We got in some good spots. We didn't have quality. The only thing I can tell you is that I don't see the group unravelling. I see the team is focused. We need to find a way to get a result.

So look, when you lose games, of course, people are going to be talking and saying all different things. We've got to shut the noise off and focus on what we need to do internally.

Q. To button this up, I think the big point here was the criticism of Shaq because they did mention to the point that Chicago Fire and Shaq cannot go on and that Shaq is giving no effort on defense, and Coach, I know you're with Shaq all the time and you see him at practice and in games. It doesn't look to me, at least, that he's not giving effort. Seems like he is being vocal and for what I've noticed personally. But how do you defend your player when things are these kind of harsh accusations saying that the guy is not even trying out there defensively, which is kind of harsh?

FRANK KLOPAS: I think the guy is trying. But obviously, you know, with -- everybody talks about the price tag and you expect more production from that. He gave the first half a really good pass that we should have converted. At the end of the day, over 90 minutes, do you expect more? Of course. You know, of course. But I don't feel that the guy is not trying.

So I think that's going to be the case for any DP that comes in. You know, the team is losing games, you know, obviously the numbers are not what they are.

So you know, I'm going to work with my players, try to prepare them, try to make the best decisions that I feel with the players that I have available to put the best quality that can give us an opportunity to win.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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