CARSON, Calif. –The sting of Panama’s failure to qualify for the 2014 World Cup will be with Jaime Penedo for some time, but with the LA Galaxy fighting for an MLS Cup championship, the goalkeeper knows that he must recover immediately.
Penedo’s nation went down in dramatic fashion on Tuesday by allowing two stoppage time goals to the U.S. to fall 3-2 ending any hopes of qualifying for Brazil. Even though he returned from Central America days later, Penedo admits that the lingering effects of the loss still remain with him.
“It’s tough especially with the way that it happened. I’m not going to lie, it’s hard for me to go to bed right now,” Penedo admitted. “When I go to sleep, I wake up and think that I’m still going to play the game, but unfortunately, we’re not going to play the game. As they say, ‘from every failure, you must learn for it to be better.
“I’m in a team that is going for a title so the best thing that I can do is put myself 100 percent into the Galaxy and try to win an MLS Cup championship,” Penedo, who is 4-1-2 in seven appearances with the Galaxy accumulating three shutouts, said.
After returning from Panama, Penedo admits that his Galaxy teammates have been extremely supportive helping to lift him after the crushing defeat. But ultimately, only Penedo can fully bounce back and that has him extremely anxious to take the field against the San Jose Earthquakes on Sunday.
“I’m very anxious to play. The best medicine right now is to get back on the field and win, so that I can get rid of the taste of that loss,” said Penedo. “But at the same time, I have to be mindful of not being overanxious because we have a tough two games ahead and I need to prepare the best that I can for those two games and the playoffs. I’m anxious, but I’m also mindful of what is ahead.”
Penedo might not be qualifying for Brazil, but the goalkeeper admits that leading the Galaxy to an MLS Cup title will take some of the sting out of his disappointment.
“What happened with the national team is something that is always going to be with me,” said Penedo. “But winning would no doubt be very gratifying.”