Postgame Notes & Quotes: LA vs DC

Donovan, Buddle lead LA to 2-1 win over D.C. United

LA GALAXY HEAD COACH BRUCE ARENA
On the game

“You’re
going to lose games along the way, and the way you respond in the next
game is important. Our response was really good tonight. I thought we
went out in the first half and set the tone. The conditions were going
to be unbearable at some point tonight and they were. I think it was
really challenging obviously for both teams, and I’m happy the way the
team came out on top. Give D.C. a lot of credit - I thought they played
real hard.”

On the friendlier road reception
“I like playing
at home. I’d rather be at home. Certainly both those players [Donovan
and Buddle] deserve positive responses - they’ve done great in the
league this year.”

LA GALAXY MIDFIELDER LANDON DONOVAN
On the
game

“The game was a difficult game. I think we knew that. D.C. are
a team that are fairly desperate to get points at this point in the
season, and they put everything they had into it. We made a few good
plays, and on another night if we’re a little better we score a few more
goals, but it’s a good win for us.”

On facing Andy Najar
“I
was very impressed with him. I’ve heard a lot about him. I’ve only seen
some tape and highlights, and I thought he did very well. Obviously the
goal was well taken, and I’m surprised how well he did in the air, and
technically I thought he was very good, and he plays a lot older than he
is. I was impressed.”

On snapping the losing streak
“We
haven’t been used to losing at all this year, and last week we lost in
Seattle in the Open Cup, and then in New England, so we needed to stop
that, and I say all the time that winning is a habit, and we got out of
the little things we do right last week, and this week we did them
right, and we did them well. And when you do that, we have enough talent
that we’re going to win.”

LA GALAXY FORWARD EDSON BUDDLE
On
his goal

“Sean [Franklin] got free somehow down the right side, and
he played a ball across, and it had enough pace where the defender had
to slide, and I was lucky that he blocked it a little bit and put it in
my stride. There was a little bit of spin on the ball so the defender
was able to catch up and made a good block on it - and I was fortunate
enough again to get the ball back, I get clear and take a touch, and put
it on target. And it found the back of the net.”

On the game
“We
lost two games on the road, and we wanted to come out here and get some
points, and we knew it wasn’t going to be easy especially facing the
humidity, but we talked about it all week, and we tried to stay focused
and compact, and I think guys on defense did a really good job of
staying together and not getting stretched, and we were able to pull out
a victory.”

D.C. UNITED HEAD COACH CURT ONALFO
On the
first goal

“First [goal] I attribute to an exceptional effort from a
very good player in the league, Edson Buddle. He used his ability of
making a play out of nothing and score a great goal. Having said that I
think we can prevent it and can probably make a save on the play.”

On
the second goal

“The second [goal] is an error, another youthful
error. Giving a ball away in a bad spot and our players are trying to
recover from it and Julius [James] lunges and the ball I assume hits his
arm and they call a penalty kick. Now all of the sudden the momentum
has just shifted after we had scored a great goal off a set piece where
Andy [Najar] just rises above everybody and is a brilliant ball from
Pablo [Hernandez] who an excellent performance. Those are moments in the
game where you got to continue with it you feel the momentum, we have
an opportunity to make a 2-1 right before that play and we didn’t. So
again, it’s a lump and it’s devastating.”

On Chris Pontius’
injury

“[Pontius] got fouled badly in the first play of the game, he
kind of fought through it. I was told at half-time by a medical staff
that they think it’s a broken foot. I have to wait to figure that out so
we have to make a sub at halftime because of that, then we have another
injury later in the game - two subs, two injuries - and in the last one
we tried to push the game.”

On the loss
“Again it came down
to a couple of mistakes. It was an even game. I felt that in the first
half we started slow, I think we dropped off too much. Our back line was
too deep. We adjusted that and made that better after 15-20 minutes and
all of the sudden we started getting some outside back involvement,
started getting a little bit of the game. But overall I think it was a
very even first half, except Edson Buddle makes an offensive play. In
the second half we come out motivated and ready to get back in it.
Credit to our guys for fighting back in, you get the equalizer and you
have the momentum and then we make an error and we shoot ourselves in
the foot. That’s my assessment of the game.”

On Jordan Graye
“[Graye]’s
a young player and that’s what you get. At the end of the day he’s
playing left back. He is our third left back. We have Marc Burch -
broken foot, we have Rodney Wallace - broken leg. He’s a fourth round
draft pick who has had some very good games for us. He’s made some
errors that have cost us, and unfortunately that’s what young players go
through. Just like every one of our players I care about him and I want
him to learn from it and we’re going to do everything possible to help
him.”

D.C. UNITED DEFENDER DEVON MCTAVISH
On Los Angeles

“I
don't even know what to say. [LA] is a good team. They have some good
players and veteran leadership, and they are okay with you keeping the
ball for the majority of the game. They had some guys that stepped up
and made some big plays. [Edson] Buddle turned nothing into a goal, and
all of a sudden we were down 1-0. We were then fighting the whole game,
and playing against a team like LA that defends as a unit, it's tough to
go down a goal like that. “

On coming back
“We fought back,
but we had a mental lapse and we were down 2-1 again. It was a solid
effort on our part, I know our guys played hard. But in the end [the
result] is just not good enough. It's just not good enough
unfortunately. “

D.C. UNITED FORWARD SANTINO QUARANTA
On
United's struggles

“I've played here a long time, and when you go
down to a man on our roster talent-wise we don't have a problem. I think
other teams are more organized. As a forward, I watch the other team's
forwards during the game, and they take time to turn and check different
pockets. I don't know if I ever had time to turn tonight. I think that
we shoot ourselves in the foot, we don't finish our chances, we find
ourselves behind all the time. We pushed forward [after tying the game],
but within minutes [the Galaxy] were in the lead. And there you are,
fighting to get back in the game. It's tough.”

On the team's
morale

“We are young, but we keep making the same mistakes over and
over again - it's almost the definition of insanity. For the guys in
this locker room this is really difficult. I don't know if everyone
knows this, knows what is going on here, but I do. The coaches [know
what is going on] and so do some of the older guys. There are
consequences for our actions. You know, I'm not scoring, and I need to
look at myself in the mirror. In the end, there are consequences for
being the worst team in the League. This is not what we strive to do
here.”

D.C. UNITED MIDFIELDER STEPHEN KING
On the loss

“You
know, soccer is a cruel game. I thought everyone worked very hard
tonight, but unfortunately it was not enough. [LA] is a good team and
they played like it tonight. We just have to get back to work in
training and make sure that we are ready for the next game.”

On
United's Open Cup match on Wednesday, July 21

“Having an Open Cup
game so soon after this loss is a good thing. We need to get back to
work, that is the only way we will put these result behind us - by
setting things right. We still have something to play for, and we all
know how important the [Open Cup] is. If we win we are in the
competition's semi-finals, so we are all going to work hard to make sure
that happens.”

 

Notes:

  • With the win, the Galaxy are now 12-2-3 on the season,
    leaving them with 39 points. They remain alone in first place in the
    Western Conference, nine points ahead of second place Real Salt Lake who
    fell to Dallas 2-0 on Saturday night and have 30 points from a 9-4-3
    record.
  • The victory also improved the Galaxy’s all-time record to
    208-159-78 to become the first team in MLS history to register 700
    points in the regular season.
  • Bruce Arena made four changes to the
    team that fell a week ago against the New England Revolution on July 10,
    bringing on Landon Donovan, Alan Gordon, A.J. DeLaGarza and Omar
    Gonzalez, who returned from serving his one game suspension for yellow
    card accumulation. They replaced Tristan Bowen, Leonardo, Alex Cazumba
    and Michael Stephens.
  • Tonight marks Alan Gordon's first start since
    May 5 against Colorado when he scored his first goal of the season in
    the Galaxy ‘s 1-0 win over the Rapids. He now has three starts in nine
    appearances this season.
  • This was the first game back for Gonzalez
    after serving his first career suspension due to yellow card
    accumulation after playing all 30 regular season games last season and
    the first 15 games of the 2010 campaign.
  • Edson Buddle gave the
    Galaxy a 1-0 lead in the 38th minute, running onto the end of a Sean
    Franklin cross from the right flank and hitting a low first time shot
    that was saved by United goalkeeper Troy Perkins.However, Perkins was
    not able to hold onto the ball and Buddle knocked in the rebound from
    just outside the six yard box. The goal was the MLS-best 11th of the
    season for Buddle. This is the third time in Buddle’s career that he has
    scored 10 or more goals in a single season, also doing so in 2003 and
    2004 with Columbus and in 2008 when he had a career-high 15 goals in his
    first full season with the Galaxy.
  • The goal from Buddle also
    marked the club’s first unassisted strike of the season following 24
    assisted goals and an own goal.
  • Andy Najar’s goal for United was
    just the eighth goal allowed by LA this season and the sixth in the
    second half.
  • Landon Donovan scored his second goal of the season in
    the 58th minute, converting from the penalty spot. The last time he
    scored a penalty kick was May 6, 2009 against Real Salt Lake in extra
    time to earn a 2-2 draw. All-time, Donovan has scored 12 goals from the
    spot since joining the Galaxy in 2005. It was his first penalty kick
    goal the season for club.
  • Sean Franklin created the penalty kick in
    the 58’ minute streaking up the right side and in to the box. He fired a
    low shot that was deflected off the arm of a sliding Julius James.
    Marking the first penalty kick awarded to the Galaxy this season.
  • The Galaxy scored the game’s first goal for the 12th time this season.
    They are now a perfect 12-0-0 in those games. Additionally, LA went into
    halftime with a 1-0 lead, marking the 11th time this season that the
    club has led at the half. They are 11-0-0 in those games.
  • The
    attendance for today’s game was 17,688.
  • The Galaxy are back in
    action on Thursday, July 22 when they host the California rivals San
    Jose Earthquakes at The Home Depot Center. That game kicks off at 7:30
    p.m. (PT) and can be seen live on ESPN2.