Postgame Quotes: LA Galaxy vs San Jose Earthquakes

LA fall to San Jose 1-0 in game one of the Western Conference Semifinal series

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LA Galaxy Head Coach Bruce Arena

Overall thoughts on the game:
“I thought our team played well tonight. Obviously we didn’t finish enough plays technically in or around the penalty area. It cost us the game, we were in position to get a goal or two tonight, for sure, and failed to execute the last pass or shot.”

Thoughts on the foul that set up the Bernardez freekick:
“No foul, if that’s a foul in this game, than there is 100 fouls.”

On San Jose’s pace to the game early on: 
“A little bit of a fresher team came at us hard. You saw what they look like in the second half. They’re the ones that are falling on the ground, taking plays, with cramps and all. Maybe the pace wasn’t to their liking.”

Thoughts on Wednesday’s second leg:
“We obviously have to see how players come through this game. Obviously, it’s been a demanding week and [we’ll] make adjustments accordingly. It’ll be right up to game time on Wednesday.”

LA Galaxy Forward Landon Donovan

Overall thoughts on the game:

“It was never a game you would think that we would lose. But, it was kind of one fluke play and we were a little unlucky. We probably weren’t sharp enough in the offensive-third of the field, but at worst we thought we would go up there 0-0 and just have to get a goal, and now it looks like we have to get two, but it’s not over. We’ve played well there twice this year and there’s no reason we can’t win there.”

On the foul that led to the goal:

“During the game we didn’t think it was a foul. I think if you ask Ricardo [Salazar] again, he’d probably say it was a mistake, he shouldn’t have called it. But we still had a chance to get our wall together and do a better job and those kind of plays happen, sometimes you don’t get calls for you and you got to do a good job with the resulting free kicks and we didn’t.”

On how Josh Saunders is dealing with the goal conceded:

“Josh will be fine. It took a pretty nasty deflection. It had a little spin on it. None of us field players know what it’s like to have that coming at you. There’s some good pace on it too. I think Josh is going to have a really good game Wednesday and give us a chance to win.”

Thoughts on their missed opportunities:

“We didn’t have too many great chances but obviously unlucky with Robbie’s, just probably didn’t run hard enough with a lot of the crosses we had, so, we got a number of decent chances and some good attacking play and on Wednesday we’ve got to score.”

On what’s to come Wednesday:

“First and foremost, we can’t concede, so we’ve got to be smart with our defending, but we’re in a position now where we’ve got nothing to lose. So we’re going to go, like we have always. We’re going to go to try to win the game, but there’s no reason why the guys in this room can’t go win a game in Santa Clara.”

LA Galaxy Forward Robbie Keane

On the team’s lack of finishing and the performance:

“We didn’t really have full chances, we had kind of half chances like off the crossbar. It’s one of those things, obviously disappointed that we conceded, but lucky enough there’s another game on Wednesday.”

On how hard it will be to come back against this team:

“We’ll see on Wednesday. It’s up to us to show some character, we’ve done it before and we can certainly do it again. We know that we can score goals against anybody so if we defend as a team and get our chances I’m sure we’ll get a few chances and hopefully score.”

On the refereeing:

“I think the ref was good. Probably one of the best we’ve had to be honest.”

LA Galaxy Goalkeeper Josh Saunders

On the San Jose goal:

“You’re trying to see through the wall, the ball goes through the wall, it deflects, takes a weird spin and you’re trying to react based on what’s happening in front of you. My play is unacceptable, I take the blame for [not] covering the goal and unfortunately that’s what happened.”

On Bernardez’s free kick:

“You know he’s going to hit it with pace, he hits the ball very well, he did it earlier in the game. That’s just one of those things, deflects, goes through the wall and you’re just trying to react based on what you see.”   

On moving on from the loss:

“It’s tough, but we have another game. We have to bounce back. It shows true character if you can come back and win this game, especially for myself to put a good performance on the field.”

On whether they are confident going into the second leg:

“Absolutely, we have all the confidence in the world as a team.”

On how the ball was struck:

“It took a weird spin, kind of got caught under me and it was behind me before I knew it.”

LA Galaxy Midfielder David Beckham

On the team’s mindset going into the second leg and their performance:

“I think our mindset doesn’t change going into the game whether it was 0-0 or obviously with the result we got. We still feel that we’d always have to go to San Jose to win the game. They were always going to come here and I think they kind sat back and in the end they were kind of going for a draw and accepting that, but obviously you get a free kick like that and there’s a chance that you’re going to score. Unfortunately they did, but I think overall our defending was great throughout the whole game. It was just tough to concede that late in the game. They’ve come here and beat us, there’s no reason why we can’t go there, but it’s going to be tough.”

On the disappointment of the loss:

“It’s always disappointing, especially when you have that much possession and we had quite a few good chances as well and crosses. Especially in the second half we kind of pushed on to them and we were creating chance after chance. If you don’t put one of those away it can always kill you at the end and I think obviously them getting their goal was disappointing. But we can take the positives from the chances we created and the possession that we had.”

Whether he was surprised to be subbed off:

“Not at all, two big games, one at home and one away. It’s important to go to San Jose Wednesday and have a few fresh legs.”

LA Galaxy Defender Omar Gonzalez

On the San Jose goal:

“I think I jumped and I think I nicked it. I don’t know if I blinded Josh, but it might of deflected off me I think and that changed it’s course a little bit and kind of messed up Josh.”

On the team’s performance in the loss:

“I think it was a game, again, we had most of the possession, we had a lot of the ball. I don’t know if they had more than three shots other than those two free kicks. I thought that we weren’t at our best tonight, we had a lot of passes that just didn’t get to their place, a lot of passes that went out of bounds and things like that. So I think we’ve got to be sharper.”

LA Galaxy Midfielder Marcelo Sarvas

On what they have to do to come back up in San Jose:

“We have to do the same. I think we had many good moments in this game, we created some good chances, we had the ball a lot. We have to do the same. We know that we can, it’s just hard, receiving the goal in the last minute is hard. We have the power to go to the next game and change the situation.”

San Jose Earthquakes Head Coach Frank Yallop

On getting the late goal:

“I think it just shows the spirit of the team. We have scored a lot of late goals. It was a good shot my Vic [Victor Bernardez], but Josh [Saunders] spills it a little bit. But, yeah, it was an even game. They had some good chances—obviously, Robbie Keane hit the bar and having a few crosses around the 6-yard box that was dangerous. I thought for an away performance with a pretty banged up squad, we are obviously very happy with the result.”

On the foul that led to the goal:

“I’d have to look at the video. I didn’t think Landon’s was, but if he gives it he gives it. It’s still 30 yards from goal. It wasn’t a penalty or around the edge, you got to give credit to Victor for a good strike on target. Obviously, a good goal for us, so at the end of the day—this is just halftime. It was an even game. We’re going home now. Hopefully, we can have another good performance, but again its halftime, we are going to get rested and get ready for the next game.”

On playing for a draw:

“I didn’t play for 0-0. We didn’t play for a draw. Simon [Dawkins] hasn’t trained for basically 5 weeks. He played that game last time against the Galaxy, two weeks ago, and he’s still struggling. He’s really not ready. Ramiro [Corrales] has played very well. I thought he played great today. If you play with two wingers against a team like the Galaxy, especially in a place like this with a big field, you get carved up and taken apart. You have to look at the quality on their team. For us to come away with a win, is amazing. They have some very, very good players that played well tonight, but they didn’t quite get the chances to go in for them.”

On the next leg:

“They are 1-0 down so they are going to throw everything at us to try and get the equalizer and to try and get the win. We know that. We’ve faced a lot of adversity all year being the unfashionable, fouling, ugly team. But 71 goals isn’t bad for an ugly team, just so you know. Or 72, excuse me. I kind of get pissed off, myself, when people say that our team is coached ugly and doesn’t play good football. For me, it’s about winning. We played plenty of pretty football and our fans love it.”

On the play of his team’s defense:

“If you look at our team defending I thought it was excellent. If thought our workrate was great. We tired a little bit and they came on to us, which, when you go away from home, is a natural thing. You tend to tire more because you’ve travelled. They pushed on in the second half, a little bit unlucky not to score, but I think in general, to keep them off the shot chart for 60-odd minutes was pretty good.”

San Jose Earthquakes Forward Alan Gordon

On the result:

“I think it’s really big. Any time you can steal a point here, steal a win here, away, and go back home is a good feeling. One thing’s for sure—this is a dangerous team. It’s going to be a tough game and this is only halftime.”

On the late goal:

“It’s been phenomenal. If we just keep playing like that, what happens is what happens. We keep working hard. We’ve done it all year and, the goal is what the goal is. It’s fortunate for us, but we don’t care how we get it. That’s call, that’s a win. We are going to hopefully, close it out.”

San Jose Earthquakes Victor Bernardez

On playing the Galaxy:

“You have to respect them. They are one of those teams in the league—they have a lot of good players. It’s definitely motivating to play against a team like that. They have such a strong cast of players. With respect to their play, we also have to play our game.

On the goal:

“My ambition in those types of plays is to always score the goal. I lined it up and that’s result we got tonight.”

San Jose Earthquakes Forward Steven Lenhart

On getting booed:

“It is what it is. I get booed, but you just have to smile and hope the team does well.”

On going back to San Jose for the second leg:

“It’s great to steal a goal away. I don’t think it changes much though. We still have to keep the same mentality and be committed for 90. They are a very dangerous team. They can score on the road as well, as we saw a couple of weeks ago. But, I thought that grabbing that goal was good.”

On his team’s workrate:

“Everyone was really committed to each other. We really showed up. Maybe there was a couple of jitters for a couple of guys, but as far as the complete work of the team—I thought we were all on the same page. We withstood some challenges.”