KANSAS CITY, Kan. – Clement Diop is hopeful that he can reclaim the LA Galaxy’s goalkeeping duties after a solid showing in Kansas City on Sunday.
Diop started the Galaxy’s 2-1 defeat to Sporting Kansas City on Sunday, making four saves in the contest. The start was Diop’s first since the team’s 6-2 loss to Real Salt Lake on July 4.
"I think I had a decent performance, but I would rather win with a team than [worry about] my performance. If I get a shot, I have to take it," Diop said. "It’s been a long time that I didn’t play, and it was my fault because I didn’t do the right things in these moments. Then I had a chance to get back to the national team, and it got my mind right. I’m back to work, and I really want to end the season doing the best I can."
The loss to Salt Lake, in particular, led Diop to re-examine his approach during a prolonged time on the sidelines.
"I think I didn’t do the right preparation earlier in the season because things happen fast to me. Maybe I don’t think I handle it well," Diop said. "Now that I have been out of games for a long time, it has got my mind right, and I work on my concentration and my focus with [goalkeeper coach Daniel Gonzalez]. I’m just going to give everything that I can give and try to do the best performance possible."
During head coach Sigi Schmid’s tenure, he has stressed competition in goal by providing minutes to Brian Rowe and Jon Kempin. Following the team’s back-to-back 4-0 defeats, the Galaxy manager gave Diop his shot.
"For the goalkeepers, [Brian] Rowe’s had a chance to play," Schmid said after the Sporting match. "[Jon] Kempin’s had a chance to play and the one that hasn’t had a chance to start today was Diop."
Schmid remains undecided on whether or not to give the Senegalese international the start on Wednesday against the Houston Dynamo, but if called, Diop is ready.
"If the team needs me, I will always give my everything on the field and try to do my best," he said.