Postgame Notes & Quotes: LA vs DC

Galaxy sit atop Western Conference with 30 points

juninho_dc

Photo Credit: 
Robert Mora / LA Galaxy

NOTES:

  • With the draw, the Galaxy are now
    8-2-6 on the season, leaving them with a league-best 30 points. LA remain in
    first place in the Western Conference and are now eight points ahead of second
    place FC Dallas, who host New England on Saturday night.
  • This is the second straight season
    in which the Galaxy are the first team in MLS to reach 30
    points.
  • The Galaxy are now unbeaten in their
    last seven games, going 4-0-3 in those contests for 15 of a possible 21
    points.
  • This was the first time that the
    Galaxy have been shutout since a 0-0 draw at Toronto FC on April
    13.
  • The Galaxy have now kept four
    successive clean sheets and have not given up a goal in the last 411
    minutes.
  • LA have used the same four defenders
    during the entire shutout streak.
  • This is the third longest shutout
    streak in MLS this season. FC Dallas have the longest at 531
    minutes.
  • Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena made
    two changes to the team that beat New England
    1-0 at Gillette Stadium on Saturday night. Chris Birchall and Josh Saunders each
    returned to the starting lineup in place of Landon Donovan and Donovan Ricketts
    who are each away on international duty for the upcoming CONCACAF Gold Cup.
  • With Donovan and Ricketts out, Brian
    Perk and Jovan Kirovski return to the 18-man squad. Adam Cristman also started
    the game on the bench in place of Bryan Jordan, who did not
    dress.
  • Juan Pablo Angel missed the game
    with a right calf strain.
  • In addition to Angel, the Galaxy
    were also without Sean Alvarado and Leonardo who are each recovering from knee
    surgery.
  • Josh Saunders made four saves, his
    most since the season opener in Seattle on March 15, to keep his second clean
    sheet of the year.
  • With the shutout, Saunders dropped
    his goals against average from 1.50 to 1.20 on the year. He has allowed six
    goals in his five games played, with four of those goals coming in the loss at
    Real
    Salt Lake.
  • Juninho left the game at halftime
    with a left ankle injury. This was the first time this season that he started a
    game and did not play at least 75 minutes.
  • He was replaced by Jovan Kirovski,
    whose 45 minutes on the field was his longest appearance of the
    season.
  • Adam Cristman made his Galaxy debut
    entering the game in the 83rd minute in place of Chad
    Barrett.
  • Todd Dunivant once again started and
    played the full 90 minutes at left back. He is the only Galaxy player to start
    every game this season and is the only one to play the full 90 minutes in each
    as well.
  • Chad Barrett and Sean Franklin each
    started the game as well and join Dunivant as the only three Galaxy players to
    have each appeared in all 16 of LA’s games this season.
  • Omar Gonzalez was the only Galaxy
    player to be shown a yellow card, as he was booked in the 42nd
    minute. That was his second caution of the season after collecting a team-high
    eight in 2010.
  • This was the Galaxy’s eighth shutout
    of the season. They are now 6-0-2 when keeping a clean sheet and 7-1-4 when not
    allowing a first half goal.
  • With the win, the Galaxy remain
    unbeaten against Eastern Conference teams. They are now 5-0-6 against the East
    and have faced every team except for the Columbus Crew at least
    once.
  • After recording a season-high high
    17 shots in each of their last two games, the Galaxy managed just seven shots,
    one of which was on goal, tonight.
  • Chris Birchall had the Galaxy’s only
    shot on goal, a 13th minute drive that was saved by Bill
    Hamid.
  • Eight of the 11 players that started
    tonight for the Galaxy also started the 1-1 draw between the sides on April
    9.
  • This was the second and final game
    regular season game between LA and D.C. United this year. The Galaxy took two
    points from the series with a pair of draws.
  • Bruce Arena remains unbeaten against
    United as the Galaxy head coach, going 2-0-4 against them.
  • This was the first time the Galaxy
    were shutout at home in the regular season since a 2-0 loss to New York on September 24,
    2010. It is the first 0-0 draw for the Galaxy at home since May 15, 2010 against
    Toronto FC.
  • The attendance for tonight’s game
    was 20,036.
  • The Galaxy are back in action on
    Saturday, May 11 when they host Toronto FC at The Home Depot Center. That game,
    which kicks off at 7:30 p.m. (PT), can be seen live on Prime Ticket starting
    with the Galaxy Live pregame show
    at 7 p.m.

QUOTES

LA Galaxy Head
Coach Bruce Arena

On
the team’s performance:

“The only
one good thing about tonight is that we lost these games at home last year. I
gave the players three days off this week and it showed. Tonight’s performance
was absolutely poor. You have to give our opponent some credit, but it was poor.
There was no quality to our game tonight. Passing was poor. Effort was just
okay. We just didn’t get it done. There are no excuses—it was just a poor
performance.”

On
missing Landon Donovan tonight:

“It has
nothing to do with it.”

On
D.C. United’s performance:

“They
played hard for 90 minutes. We didn’t play hard for 90 minutes. You know then
they caught us on a couple of counters. The play at the end with [Charlie]
Davies—we were lucky to get out of it. They played hard. Obviously a road
posture, defending hard with 11 players for 90 minutes, looking for breaks with
the counter, not anything unusual. I think they played with good spirit and good
effort.”

On
Josh Saunders:

“He had a
couple of good saves. I think Josh certainly did well. There is no question
about that.”

LA
Galaxy Midfielder David Beckham

On
the team’s performance:

“We
started flat. I don’t think that we passed the ball well. We didn’t create
space. I think it just went through the whole game. We didn’t have a moment—we
did create a couple of good chances, but its just one of those nights where we
didn’t play well.”

On
Landon Donovan being with the U.S. National
team:

“We
always miss players when they are away, but we could have won the game at the
end of the day. I don’t think we didn’t play well because of missing Landon.”

On
keeping the clean sheet defensively:

“Obviously, that’s
what we needed to do today. We didn’t play well. And when you don’t play well
you need the team to come together and the defense to come together. And, we did
that tonight. Shutting them out was the only positive from tonight.”

LA
Galaxy Defender Todd Dunivant

On
the team’s performance:

“Why we
came out that way? I don’t know. Guys who didn’t play the previous week where we
had the three games didn’t play either. Heavy legs, tired legs, we didn’t have a
good performance. And properly at the end of the night, we didn’t deserve three
points, but we got one, so I take that as a positive. It just seemed like we
were sluggish all night. Maybe its fatigue from all the games, but we can’t use
that as an excuse. We were really slow on the ball. We couldn’t play our game.
We weren’t able to hold the ball up. Credit to them, they took us out of our
rhythm and kind of killed the game.”

On
missing Landon Donovan:

“Yes,
he’s an X factor for sure and we missed that spark tonight. We were pretty flat
and we didn’t have any really explosive plays out there tonight, and he’s known
for that.”

LA Galaxy
Goalkeeper Josh Saunders

On the
game:
 

“Towards the end of the game it
started to open up a bit because we were pushing up to try and get the goal.
Toward the end they started to throw numbers at us, it was difficult for us to
withstand the pressure but the defense played well and helped us
out.”

On Wearing
Camouflaged Gloves:

“I’m just so proud to don the colors
of our country and just a little bit of extra effort from my side because I
wanted to show my appreciation for what our troops have done for
us.”

LA Galaxy
Defender Omar Gonzalez

On the
game:

“We got the point but we would’ve
much rather have had the three points at home and we just have to give them
credit because they played hard and tough the whole game.  It’s probably one of
the best games that they have played and one of the worst games we’ve played
since [Real] Salt
Lake.  I think we just came
out flat and I just think to be honest we’re just a little bit tired from three
games in one week.  Overall it was just us being flat and being slow mentally. 
Me, I was just slow tonight. I didn’t win many balls I should’ve won, I just
didn’t run tonight.  Going forward we just got to plan and look forward to next
game and get the three points.”

On the short
week ahead of tonight’s game:

“This week we had just two days of
training and it’s tough to come out and put on a solid performance. I think we
should’ve been able to do it but we just didn’t do it
tonight.”

LA Galaxy forward
Miguel Lopez

(Translated from
Spanish)

On the game and
his performance:

“We didn’t play well. I felt very
tired because I have been playing a lot but that’s no excuse. We couldn’t turn
the game around and we didn’t have many chances on goal.  I am looking forward
to this week I will review what I did wrong.”

D.C.
United Head Coach Ben Olsen

On
tonight’s game:

“I think overall we
are pretty excited that in the last two games we get four points on the road. I
am a little disappointed in not getting three points today. I thought we had
some good chances. If only we were a little bit sharper in the final third. We
are a little happier right now. Good trip. But, still, you know, we need to get
those (three points). We need to start doing that. But, again, I am overall
pretty happy.”

On
United’s defense:

“We had three rookies
in the back. It was a pretty impressive performance from those three young guys.
They continued to play beyond their rookie statuses so to speak. They play week
in and week out and it would be thought to take those two out of the line up
especially at center back.”

On
the LA vs. D.C. rivalry:

“I think it has cooled
down a little bit. LA certainly has a lot more joy in the last couple of years
and we have struggled a little bit but hopefully we start rising up the table a
little bit so it could be a real rivalry again.”

D.C.
United Midfielder Andy Najar

(Translated from
Spanish)

On
tonight’s game:

“I felt great and I am
very happy with the team they gave it their all. We tried looking for the goal
but it didn’t happen. We are happy with the point we were able to
get.”

On
their performance on the road:

“We are happy with the
four points we are taking to D.C. Now we look forward to the game we have next
Saturday against San
Jose. We have to wait and see what
happens.”

D.C
United Midfielder Chris Pontius

On
tonight’s game:

“I think overall we
played a pretty good game on the road minus finishing in the final third. That
is what the game comes down to we didn’t finish our chances tonight. We walk out
of here with a point against the best team in the league and I think that is a
pretty good result.”

On
the team’s performance:

“I thought our defense
came up huge. You are talking about a defense that has two center backs that are
19 and 20 years old and then another young rookie at right back. I thought they
came up big time. I thought we defended as a team. We need to be cleaner on the
ball offensively but defensively I thought we were good
tonight.”

 

Related:
Highlights: LA vs DC
Match Recap: Galaxy, United battle to 0-0 draw