Postgame Quotes: LA Galaxy defeat FC Dallas 2-1

Postgame quote sheet from the LA Galaxy's 2-1 victory over FC Dallas

Postgame Quote Sheet
LA Galaxy 2, FC Dallas 1
Wednesday, May 21, 2014
MLS Regular Season
StubHub Center – Carson, Calif.

LA GALAXY HEAD COACH BRUCE ARENA

On having Jacob Trainer with the team:

“It certainly helped. It was nice meeting Jacob yesterday. He’s a fine young man. Having him around before the game, gave us some good concentration and a desire to win.”

 On the goals:

“I think two good goals. Obviously, Keane’s was a spectacular finish and Gyasi (Zardes) is in a good spot to put away that good. We’re pleased with that. Probably, we had a few opportunities to get a second one. I think it was a good night for us. Obviously, the three points were important. I think we were a little bit sloppy. I give Dallas credit. They pushed really hard to get the equalizer at the end and did a good job. We were probably a little sloppy over the last 15 minutes and could have been better. It was a little unfortunate that the linesman missed the offside, which resulted in the Dallas goal, but that’s all part of it. I give our backline credit. They did what they are supposed to do on a play like that. It’s unfortunate that the linesman missed it and we had to scramble over the last 15 minutes.”

 On the play of Kenny Walker and Gyasi Zardes:

“It was very good. We brought two new players in the lineup and both played very well. I am very pleased with Kenny Walker. He did an outstanding job. He’s passing was excellent. And, Gyasi scored the winning goal, so I can’t complain.”

 On Juninho’s performance:

“Juninho had a really good game. He’s arguable our best player the first nine games of the season. He’s been very consistent and had another good night tonight.”

 On Raul Mendiola’s appearance:

“Obviously, a young player that each minute is important for him. He showed some confidence and ability. He’s still a little bit young and maybe the last few minutes could have done better on a couple of plays. We think he’s an exciting young player and hopefully, we can move him along.”

 On Tommy Meyer and Kofi Opare playing together for the second game:

“I thought they did well. Good job. Kofi had a few lapses in the first half and responded well in the second. And, did a real good job.”

LA GALAXY FORWARD ROBBIE KEANE:

 On his goal:

“It was a good goal obviously it was nice to get the first goal…seems like we haven’t done it for a while so it was important for us to get that first goal.”

On playing at home:

“It has been a long few weeks away from home so it was certainly nice to be in your back garden. I think the way we played was very good. The pitch was playing very very well with the wetness, and you could see from the way we moved the ball really quickly. The second half was a little bit different, could have gone either way. They were a little bit on top… we wasted some chances of counter and stuff like that. So, I think overall we have played certain way and certain performance. Considering the last few weeks how difficult it was for the team. ”

On  the play of Gyasi Zardes:

“He did well today. I said that before the game that it’s important for him to have a big game today, and he certainly did. He was a threat. We played a different formation and he gave us the width at times certainly in the first half. From the second half, he did well winning headers and stuff…he did well. He just needed to mix the game up, which he did tonight—sometimes go at people, opportunity for one versus one, take people around when we have the opportunity to send to ball like the goal for example. A little passing and it was a goal. He mixed his game up well tonight and he got the award from that. That’s why he is one of our best performers tonight.”

On the assist:

“That’s what we do when we move the ball quickly. You pass the ball…you keep saying  that the ball is quicker than anybody else—we kept moving it just like we did in the first half. ”

On Kenny Walker:

“Kenny was outstanding tonight. It was very effective the way he played. He talked about simple passing and taking people out of the game and he was talking three to four people out of the game. That’s how you play just like how the best players in the world play. Like Xavi and people play very simple but also very effective. That was the case with him.”

On Kenny Walker’s second cap:

“It is fantastic. To be fair, during the training he was knocking on the door. He has been looking good and he has been training the way he was playing. The way he played tonight, that’s how we played during the trainings lately.”

 On Raul Mendiola:

“Yeah…he didn’t have a lot do, but things he did, he did well. He is very positive, he has got great feet, he is very tricky and he is very difficult to play against because he is just so low on his feet and got great balance. He did well tonight. He is only going to get better and better the more games he plays.”

About Raul Mendiola’s possibility of starting:

“There is a long way to go. If he keeps working hard like he has been, keeps doing the things that coaches are telling him and players are telling him and helping him with. He is a good kid and he listens very well. He is always asking questions and he wants to learn you know? That’s the sign of a good player. He wants to always learn and always be better. He has been very good in the past few weeks just goes to show you from the Galaxy II if you were doing well. Mendiola is the perfect example of the galaxy II because he took his opportunity and he took it well and he was moved up to the first team.”

About struggles over the last few weeks:

“I don’t think we’ve been doing bad you know, it’s just been unlucky and sloppy at times and conceded goals. But we certainly haven’t been bad. I had a fear that there was certain a win on the card tonight and it is important how we continue playing on the same manner that we did. Another big game on Sunday so…it is important that we get three points there as well.”

LA GALAXY MIDFIELDER RAUL MENDIOLA:

On his second appearance:

“It means a lot to me. I have been working hard the past couple of months. It’s paying off but I got to keep going you know. You’ve got to keep the ball happy. Time by time, playing MLS is like an accomplishment for me, so I want to keep working hard.”

On his playing style and mindset:

“I just try to do my best when I get out there. I knew that I had to manage the score whether we were losing or winning. I just like to play, getting out there and moving around. Also it is important to win so I got to keep that in mind as well.”

On pairing with Robbie Keane:

“He has been helping me a lot. He has been telling me about the game like how he knows it. He helps me a lot and I am growing. It’s fun to play with him.”

On his newfound confidence:

“I just have to be mentally prepared. It is very tough but I tried to be mentally prepared. I just got to do my job as everybody else on the field.”

On his personal goals:

“Of course I do…but I’m still kind of young. I want to work my way up there. I don’t want to go straight to the top. I want to work my way in. I am getting these opportunities and I want to take advantage of them.”

LA GALAXY MIDFIELDER GYASI ZARDES

On his goal and assist:

“It’s definitely a confidence booster, just to step on the pitch and just to get a goal and also get an assist for Robbie [Keane]. It feels wonderful.”

On his start and how it helps his confidence:

“It helps a lot because instead of coming in to the game late and trying to catch rhythm, you start in form with your team and you build as the game goes on.”

On pairing up with Robbie Keane:

“I always try to find him as soon as possible because I know that if I pass the ball to Robbie [Keane]; I know I will get it back.”

On the play of Robbie Keane’s goal:

“I saw Robbie [Keane] open and then I just tried to give it to him as soon as possible and I knew he had a great opportunity on goal.”

On playing at home again:

“It feels wonderful to play at home. This is our hometown, our fans come out to support us and we just really have to hold it down here.”

On the play of his goal:

“It’s always chaotic when the ball gets played out and I saw Juninho lined up so I just made sure that I was in a good position. I looked and I saw that I was by myself and in moments like that you just have to put it on frame.”

On the win:

“It feels good because we are starting to get back on the road. Like our coach says, we killed ourselves in our previous games but now at practice we are learning and we are really listening to our coaches. We have everything we need we just have to keep working and put games away earlier.”

On what the team needs to do to continue getting the results:

“You have to go forward. The past is the past, for a reason you learn from it and you go forward and move on from the things you’ve done wrong in the past. I definitely think we’ve learned how to finish our chances and opportunities and just to be an initial threat and get numbers out in the attack.”

LA GALAXY MIDFIELDER KENNEY WALKER

On his performance:

“It’s obviously a different an environment since the first time I played but it was good, just getting out there and contributing to the team on the field rather than just training so it was good to just get out there and play and help the team get the points, which is what is important thing right now.”

On Robbie Keane’s compliments after tonight’s performance:

“I mean, thanks for the praise, but I just like to play simple. I don’t like to play too extravagant and the easier I play, the simpler and faster I play and the more time everybody else has so that’s just the way that I like to play. I feel like that sometimes we need that a little bit, just slow the game down and move it and just get our composure and then go. At times we get moving fast and then it’s counter attack go and then I feel that suits us on and off but there’s times where we are just going to slow it down. I think I can contribute to that a little bit but they make it easy for me as well. Playing next to Juninho, Robbie [Keane], all those guys that have been playing hundreds of games and this is only my second game so it makes it easier for me and I just have fun and play.”

On how Galaxy II has helped his performance:

“It helps a lot. Going to North Carolina last year, and coming back here it seemed like a world of a difference when I got back here. I felt like I was completely different, just training every day to actually getting in games, and then this year getting four, five, six games before we step on the field ,it’s a fitness level that you can’t achieve at training. And you get that from Galaxy II.”

On playing at home:

“The past three games on the road were pretty much a battle every game. It might have not been the best performances and there’s little things that we could have tweaked and we were unlucky in some of the games but we played well. Now getting back home in our beds the night before the game might help a little bit but we have to make the push now to get where we want to be at the end of the year.”

On playing alongside Juninho:

“We just play off each other, if one goes the other one stays. It’s more of a 4-4-2 rather than a diamond that we have been playing, so it’s just sharing responsibilities in attacking and defending. I am not going to hold him back from going forward. I just sit in the front and pass the ball around.”

On the play of Jair Benitez:

“In that point of the game, in that position of the field that deep, close to our box and with a person on, we just got a little bit too confident and a little bit too risky in that position and tried to clip it over in that dangerous area and you get punished for it at this level.”

FC DALLAS HEAD COACH OSCAR PAREJA

On the goal scored by Robbie Keane:

"That is a good play right there, nothing we can do. The second goal was disappointing for us, once again it was lack of concentration and a ball that was controlled. The game came down to that one play and we get back one of the goals, it was difficult at that time to understand how we were losing the game 2-0. I thought we had the best options, but that is the way it goes."

On the overall thoughts of the game:

"Like any other defeat, walking off without points is frustrating, but we are moving forward. The reaction that this team had, and the quality of the players giving all they had, always having the initiative. The way we played can definitely help with feeling encouraged, it doesn't give us points, but it is encouraging."

FC DALLAS DEFENDER MATT HEDGES:

On the play of Dallas in the second half:

"Our second half was much better. I think we kept the ball better, we attacked better, we put a lot more pressure on them than we did in the first half and I think it showed. Night and day from the first half."

On the goal by Gyasi Zardes:

"Yea, he was unmarked in the box, it is something we will have to figure out what was going on, why he was so open, that is all we can really talk about it."

FC DALLAS FORWARD TESHO AKINDELE:

On scoring his first career MLS goal:

"Since we were away, it was so quiet after I scored, I thought for sure I was offside. I checked like five times with the assistant ref just to make sure he didn't raise his flag. It is just pure happiness as a striker when you score a goal, that is what I am paid for, that is why I am here, so to score a goal makes me really happy."

 On the play of Dallas in the second half:

"Being down one goal as opposed to two goals is a huge difference. When it is one goal, you are just one play away from tying the game. After the goal, everyone really felt like we had a chance of getting back into it. The second half we completely dominated them, so we just have to look at the positives in every situation. I think we played a great second half and we will move forward with that."