SANDY, Utah— Goalkeeper Brian Rowe stood on his head for nearly 90 minutes but ultimately it wasn’t enough as the LA Galaxy were eliminated from the U.S. Open Cup with a 1-0 defeat to Real Salt Lake in the tournament’s quarterfinal round on Tuesday.
Rowe made four stunning saves to keep the score level until the 87th minute when Aaron Maund headed in the evening's only goal. Rowe’s counterpart Jeff Attinella made three saves on the night. New Galaxy signing Steven Gerrard went 45 minutes in his second appearance since joining up with the club earlier this month.
The defeat ends the Galaxy’s longest run in the Open Cup since the 2011 campaign when they also exited in the quarterfinal round.
Real Salt Lake started the match on the front foot, dominating possession in the opening 45 minutes. RSL nearly took the lead in the sixth minute when Rowe was called into action to deflect a Sebastian Jaime shot from close range. Soon it was the Galaxy’s turn to threaten as Attinella came up with two clutch stops of Robbie Keane in the 20th minute, and Sebastian Lletget just a minute later.
The goalkeepers continued to trade saves in the second. In the 54th minute, Rowe denied a quick redirect by Plata, and then moments later, Attinella made a clutch stop on Gerrard at the doorstep.
Salt Lake kept up the pressure in the 59th minute when Javier Morales launched a shot from distance that sailed just over the Galaxy net. However, it was soon the Galaxy’s turn to threaten as Gerrard nearly gave the Galaxy the lead once more in the 76th minute when an interchange between Lletget and Keane resulted in a chance for the Englishman but his effort sailed over the bar.
The Galaxy’s ‘keeper made his most impressive stop in the 83rd minute when he made a timely reaction save of fan Olmes Garcia chance from inside the penalty area. Ultimately Rowe’s heroics were not enough as just moments later, Maund nodded in a Luke Mulholland cross for the game-winner.
The Galaxy will return to league action on Friday when they face the San Jose Earthquakes at StubHub Center.
Adam Serrano is the LA Galaxy Insider. Read his blog at LAGalaxy.com/Insider and contact him at LAGalaxyInsider@Gmail.com.
LA Galaxy 0, Real Salt Lake 1
Tuesday, July 14, 2015 – 7:00 p.m. PT
2015 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup – Quarterfinals
Rio Tinto Stadium – Sandy, Utah
RSL – Aaron Maund (Assisted by Luke Mulholland) 87'
RSL – Luke Mulholland (caution) 89’
LA Galaxy: Brian Rowe; Dan Gargan, Leonardo, A.J. DeLaGarza, Todd Dunivant; Ignacio Maganto (Steven Gerrard 45’), Kenney Walker (Alan Gordon 77’), Juninho, Raul Mendiola (Edson Buddle 89’); Sebastian Lletget, Robbie Keane.
Substitutions not used: Andrew Wolverton, Tommy Meyer, Rafael Garcia, Baggio Husidic.
TOTAL SHOTS: 7; SHOTS ON GOAL: 4; FOULS: 7; OFFSIDE: 5; CORNER KICKS: 1; SAVES: 4.
Real Salt Lake: Jeff Attinella; Tony Beltran, Aaron Maund, Chris Schuler, Abdoulie Mansally; Jorden Allen (John Stertzer 90’+1), Javier Morales, Luke Mulholland; Joao Plata, Sebastian Jaime (Olmes Garcia 82’), Devon Sandoval.
Substitutions not used: Eduardo Fernandez, Luis Gil, Justen Glad, Wellington Paeckart, Sebastian Saucedo.
TOTAL SHOTS: 16; SHOTS ON GOAL: 5; FOULS: 13; OFFSIDE: 0; CORNER KICKS: 9; SAVES: 4.
Referee: Jose Carlos Rivero