Quotes from Galaxy-Rapids, May 5

QUOTES

Galaxy Head Coach Bruce Arena
On the game…
“Give Colorado a lot of credit, they pushed us really hard to get the goal and even up the game. Both teams played very well. It’s really good to get a win on the road in Denver, it’s never easy. I told Edson (Buddle) he could have had nine goals tonight. I think Pickens made some pretty good saves. I was pleased with our performance.”

“You know the home team is going to come hard at you, especially as they were trailing. We needed to be patient and do the defending that is necessary and look to get the second goal. Give Colorado credit, they pushed to get that goal.”

“I think (Omar) Cummings was real dangerous in the first half. In the second half, we did a little bit of a better job on him.”

Galaxy forward Landon Donovan
On the game…
“We did a good job of dictating the game, which was smart. We played the way we need to play on the road against a team that plays well at home and has the advantage of altitude, field size and crowd. We limited them to a few good chances.”

“It’s hard to play here, even if you’re fit, it’s still a challenge. Colorado has a big advantage of training here every day. That’s why it’s so special to come here and win. We haven’t done it in a long time and I’m very proud of us. We got tired but we pushed through and we did very well.”

Galaxy forward Alan Gordon
On his game winning goal…
“Maybe they were looking for a shot but they definitely weren’t covering me. We played a good ball, I was lucky to get a head on it and win it. We know we have some big boys, so we concentrate on doing our free kicks well and it worked out.”

Galaxy forward Edson Buddle
On Conor Casey…
“He’s a good player to watch if you want to learn some things, he is a good example. I like Conor’s game; I like him as a person as well.”

On playing at altitude…
“It’s a little rough playing in altitude. But we came in late last night and I think it helped. We did win, so we aren’t going to complain about the altitude.”

Rapids Head Coach Gary Smith
On the game…
“I thought they were the better team in the first half and mounted some good pressure in the opening 20 minutes. But for us to concede from a dead ball again was a disappointment. I thought we created some absolutely fabulous opportunities. I think to come out in the second half and to dominate the way we did showed a lot of character from the group. We showed the quality of possession we had displayed the last several weeks. The big difference from this week from last was we created some fabulous chances. Unfortunately today, we couldn’t force on. And in a game where one goal can make a big difference, their one has gotten the three points.”

Rapids goalkeeper Matt Pickens
On the game…
“We can’t dwell on this one, but it is a really hard loss when you look at how much we put into it. We were able to play our game. I think if it wasn’t for the way we started; it would have been a different result.”

“The game comes down to the finest detail like a set piece that went against us again. It is a very small margin, but we need to correct that. We need to put on emphasis on correcting these small things so we can get something from these games.”

Rapids defender Drew Moor
On Alan Gordon’s goal…
“I think they were a little bit overloaded on the back post. I think (Omar) Gonzalez came in really late and we didn’t adjust to it quick enough and made a quick switch which left Gordon open. We had plenty of time once the foul was called to get in position. It (goals from set pieces) is just something that is haunting us right now.”

NOTES

With the win, the Galaxy are now 6-0-1 on the season, giving them 19 points. They remain alone in first place in the Western Conference and are now nine points ahead of second place Colorado and Houston, who lost 1-0 at home to FC Dallas earlier on the night.
• LA is now four points ahead of the Eastern Conference leading New York Red Bulls for the best record in MLS. The Red Bulls are 5-1-0 for 15 points.
• The Galaxy did not get their 19th point of the 2009 season until a 1-0 win over New England on July 4.
• For the first time this season, Bruce Arena made no changes to his team from the 3-1 win over Philadelphia on Saturday night. In addition to keeping the same starting XI, Arena named the same seven substitutes as he had against the Union.
• The Galaxy were once again without Sean Franklin, Dema Kovalenko, Leonardo, Eddie Lewis and Mike Magee who all missed the game because of injury. Of that group, only Magee made the trip to Colorado.
• Alan Gordon scored his first goal of the season in the 21st minute, heading home a Landon Donovan freekick. The goal was Gordon’s first in MLS since a 2-1 win at Toronto FC on June 6, 2009.
• Donovan, who was fouled leading to the freekick, collected his MLS-best sixth assist of the season on the goal, tying his total from all of 2009 when he finished tied for the team lead in assists.
• Edson Buddle was booked in the 89th minute for his fourth yellow card of the season. Buddle is now one caution away from a mandatory one-game suspension.
• Goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts made three saves in the game for LA to keep his fifth shutout in seven games this season. Ricketts has allowed just two goals in 630 minutes for a league-best 0.29 goals against average.
• Former Rapids Jovan Kirovski and Clint Mathis each entered the game in the second half for the Galaxy.
• The win was the Galaxy’s first in Colorado since July 13, 2002 when the Galaxy won 3-1 over the Rapids at INVESCO Field at Mile High when Danny Califf, Ezra Hendrickson and Carlos Ruiz scored for the Galaxy. Since that game, LA was 0-8-4 in Denver, including 0-3-1 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.
• The Galaxy are now 3-0-0 all-time on Cinco de Mayo.
• Galaxy midfielder Chris Birchall celebrated his 26th birthday today and played the full 90 minutes in central midfield.
• The attendance for today’s game was 9,882.
• The Galaxy are back in action on Saturday afternoon when they travel to Seattle to take on the Seattle Sounders FC at Qwest Field. The game kicks off at 1 p.m. and can be seen live on FOX Sports West starting with the Galaxy Live pregame show at 12 p.m. AM 570 and ESPN Deportes Radio 1330 AM will broadcast the game live on the radio in English and Spanish respectively, starting with their pregame shows at 12 p.m.