When the Los Angeles Galaxy took the pitch at BMO Field to take on Toronto FC on Saturday, they tried to put their most-recent memory behind them.
While the club was unable to leave Canada with three points, the team added another road shutout to their already impressive tally as the Galaxy and Toronto FC tied 0-0.
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“That was our mentality,” Galaxy defender Gregg Berhalter said. “We wanted to get back into it after losing that last game.”
Toronto FC had already shut out the Galaxy when the two teams met at Home Depot Center on May 15. It was the Galaxy’s turn, then, to return the favor. Like the Galaxy, Toronto FC have yet to lose at home this season, but the Galaxy were able to hold the Canadian side scoreless.
“It was another tough road game,” Berhalter said. “They're undefeated at home and it wasn't going to be easy. We came in, were disciplined and fought hard for a point.”
Conditions surrounding the match were less than ideal. For starters, the match was played on a wet surface as rain pelted the city for much of the day. While the rain stopped before kickoff, it picked back up again during the second half.
Additionally, the city of Toronto is hosting the G20 Summit, which brought out protesters by the masses. According to reports, on Saturday thousands of protesters smashed storefront windows and set cars ablaze as Toronto Mayor David Miller urged residents to stay calm.
“We're here to do a job. We’re here to win a game and we tried to put our best foot forward,” Berhalter said. “The conditions are the same for both teams, so we can't worry about that. We came here to win and take three points back to LA. Unfortunately we didn't do that.”
Civil unrest or not, the Galaxy set themselves up for a positive start to what is essentially the second half of the 2010 MLS season. Earning a shutout will help going forward.
“Any time you go away from home, you don't want to concede goals, and you want to go back home and make it a more hostile environment. It's definitely a goal of ours. We don't take it for granted.”
Something else benefiting the Galaxy: Landon Donovan and Edson Buddle may be back with the club in time for their next league home match. With the U.S. exiting from the World Cup on Saturday, the Galaxy’s key attack men may be back with the team for the Galaxy’s July 4 match against Seattle.
But Berhalter played down their absences.
“We've scored a bunch of goals without those guys,” he said. “Obviously they're a big part of our attack but we've proven we can score without them. It's just a question of today. We had some chances but we didn't make the best of them. We're confident in this group of guys for sure.”