Kevork Djansezian

Ready to Bounce Back

The positives far outweigh the negatives, as far as the LA Galaxy are concerned.

It was just under a week ago that the Galaxy suffered their first loss of the season, falling 1-0 to Real Salt Lake at Rio Tinto Stadium. The winning goal was scored in the 80th minute by Javier Morales, who appeared to be an offside position on the play, but the call from the officiating crew never came. The defeat ended the Galaxy's 15-game unbeaten run stretching back to the 2009 season and denied them a chance to maintain their pursuit of the MLS record of 19 consecutive games without loss set by the Columbus Crew from July, 2004 to April 2005.

Now for the positives. The Galaxy still have the league's best record at 10-1-2 and are nine points clear of Real Salt Lake in the Western Conference. As much as it pains members of the Galaxy to think back on their last game, it's the big picture which overrides any disappointment.

But make no mistake. There is plenty of it.

"Of course it lingers," defender Gregg Berhalter said. "We obviously didn't play our best game, we know that. We still feel it wasn't a regulation goal, and that's disappointing. We thought we could come out of there with at least a point, and now we're back to the drawing board.

"We'll still confident, we're still a good team, but we have to be extra sharp and focused for our next game."

That won't be until June 26 against Toronto FC at BMO Field. MLS is in a two-week break for the group stage of the World Cup in South Africa, so the Galaxy will have to bide their time before returning to regular season action.

"We're not going to rest on our laurels," Berhalter said. "You look in the short term, and it's difficult. You look at the big picture, we're 10-1-2 after 13 games, the best record in the league, and we're proud of that. That bitter taste in our mouths makes us even hungrier for our next game."

Veteran midfielder Chris Klein said he's watched a replay of the game and already has moved on.

"We're a team this year that's prepared to be good enough over the course of a season that we're going to ride momentum either way," he said. "We're not happy about the last game, but we're satisfied with the first part of the season, and we think we can get better from it.

"After playing a while" -- Klein is in his 13th season -- "I think I can look at the scope of the whole season better. We're going to hit some valleys. We suffered a loss on the road to one of the best teams in the league. No, we didn't want it to happen, but I think we can move on from that. I think it could be beneficial for us. We've won some games where we haven't played our best. To get punished when we didn't play our best I think can be a positive thing for us."

Head coach Bruce Arena, now in his third season with the Galaxy, said he has not watched a replay of the loss.

"They're not going to change the decision," he said with a grin.

"How would you like to be the guy that pitched a no-hitter?" he went on, referring to the Detroit Tigers’ Armando Galarraga, who recently lost a perfect game on an umpire's blown call with two outs in the ninth inning. "Those things happen. On the road, we're actually in position to get a point, they missed a call and it won't be the last missed call this year. There are going to be games where we get a break. Those things balance themselves out.

"You're never happy to lose a game, especially under those circumstances. You want them to beat you on a better play than that, but that's part of it. On the whole I can't complain. If you had told me we'd have a record of 10-1-2 going into the break, I would have told you you're crazy. I realize we have a lot of work ahead of us and we're going to put in the time and effort to get better."