LA Galaxy 2, Montreal Impact 1
Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019 – 7:30 p.m. PT
2019 MLS Regular Season
Dignity Health Sports Park – Los Angeles
LA GALAXY HEAD COACH GUILLERMO BARROS SCHELOTTO
On the game and missed opportunities on goal:
“The result is really good, because it gives us three points, but ever since we had our last game with Sporting Kansas City, we couldn’t have that today. But I am happy because the team was getting in situations to score. I think we defended well. You sometimes get the feeling when the result is just for one goal, and you could score more, but you don’t; maybe in the last minute you get nervous or feel a little pressure, because we needed to win today. But I am happy with the performance of the team, because I think we were looking to win, we went forward on the pitch, we tried, and we were able to. We played better than the rival, we managed the ball, we had a lot of situations to kill the game before the time, but we couldn’t, but I am happy.”
On the scoring race between Zlatan Ibrahimović and Carlos Vela, and his opinion on Zlatan possibly being the MVP of the league:
“I think, yes. I think the goal he scored right now is a lot. The team is getting better, but it’s more for the fans and the media. For me, I know what kind of player he is, I told you about the times where maybe in the last 20 years, a player like him makes a difference, like [Lionel] Messi and [Cristiano] Ronaldo, he is at the same level as them. We are enjoying him in LA Galaxy and MLS, but I think the other players played well too and scored like him too.”
On Uriel Antuna’s form:
“He’s getting better in terms of having confidence with himself. He’s giving us speed, assists, goals, and when the team gets plays like today, like the other day, I think in the last six or seven games, the team is getting much better. And, with [Cristian] Pavon and him playing wide and [Zlatan] Ibrahimović in front, we have gotten very dangerous and they can make more of a difference, because how we put them on the field. We try to play one on one, and they are so fast. Him and [Cristian] Pavon, they can make a difference. [Uriel] Antuna has gotten confidence from when they won the Gold Cup with Mexico. I think he started and maybe in March or April he went a little down, but he was getting better. Right now, he is at a really good level.”
On the team performing better as MLS playoffs approach:
“You know a lot of times the winner for the Supporters’ Shield doesn’t win the Cup; sometimes the teams that get in playoffs at the last minute, like in 2009 Real Salt Lake won the Cup. We need to be smart right now to get points to get to the Playoffs, and if we get in, to be smart in that moment. Now, we need to be focused on the Real Salt Lake game, and that’s it.”
On Julian Araujo’s performance:
“I think he got better in the second half. He was stronger. He could go up and make a difference, but the best thing for him is that he’s getting a lot of minutes. He’s 18 years old. I think the future will be great for him, but he needs minutes on the field. He needs to make mistakes. He needs to get good balls, and good passes, but he needs minutes. This is the best for him right now; the minutes on the pitch, and where he can realize where he is at.”
[Translated from Spanish]
On if the LA Galaxy are dependent on Zlatan Ibrahimović to win:
“No, I think that today [Cristian] Pavon could’ve scored another goal. He had two or three clear opportunities, as did [Uriel] Antuna. But, in this case it’s [Zlatan] Ibrahimović and we try to take advantage of that, because he is a very notable player. But the system also forces situations to generate goal scoring opportunities by the number nine. [Zlatan] Ibrahimović is a very notable player, and it’s not that the teams depend only on him, but no matter where he is, he is always going to make a big difference, and he is going to be a very important factor on every team that he plays on.”
LA GALAXY FORWARD ZLATAN IBRAHIMOVIĆ
On his performance tonight:
“It was okay, I scored one goal and I tried to help for the second goal and Uriel [Antuna] scored a goal and we won the game and that’s the most important. I think I could have scored another two or three goals and I don’t know if I did a bad miss, or if the goalkeeper did a good save.”
On the Golden Boot race and whether it’s something he wants and whether he’s the MVP of this league:
“I am the MVP of the MVPs, so I don’t focus on that. I focus on performing and making my team win, because now we are in a good position, we just have to continue. This is what we want, we want to be in the Playoffs and then we take the race from there. So, whoever wins whatever individual [award] is not important for me.”
On whether winning Golden Boot is more important because the more he scores, the better the team does:
“That’s the way to help my team, I have to score a lot of goals. I don’t know how it works with the Golden Boot. With Playoffs or without? I don’t know, I just try to help my team. I think I missed five or six games compared to the other ones.”
On whether he got hurt at the end of the game as he was limping:
“I was tired. When I jumped in a duel, I twisted my ankle and I think I hit a nerve so I couldn’t feel my left foot. But after a while it came back but that was it.”
On the intensity of the game:
“I think we were intense in the first half, second [half] the rhythm goes down. I don’t know what it depends on, but first half we are intense – the rhythm is very high, we create a lot of chances in the second, but we don’t have the same intensity in the second. Which is not easy to keep up first and the second half because when you keep a high intensity like in the first [half] obviously it will slow down in the second, but we have to take advantage of when we have the high intensity and damage the opponent. Which we did, but then we conceded a goal early in the second half and then things change, but then we made it 2-1. We needed to win, and we won.”
On the possibility of having scored more goals and then Montreal getting opportunities and being dangerous:
“That is what happens when you don’t score, when you don’t punish your opponent. Then they try and they score a goal and they get confidence and spaces. You need to damage the opponent when you have the chance and we didn’t do enough of that but still, we won the game.”
On things coming together for this team and how big the game against Real Salt Lake will be this week:
“I think every game is big. The last five or six games we said to ourselves that we need to win if we want to play the Playoffs and it’s up to us. If we want, we will make it, if we want, we will do it also. So, two games now we won, that’s six points. Next game in Salt Lake, okay if we can win that one is a huge step so let’s keep this with us.”
On getting in the Playoffs with a positive streak:
“It’s two different competitions I think, first is to [make] the Playoffs and then the second one is the Playoffs. So, whatever we did here to get in the Playoffs, it doesn’t come with us in the Playoffs. It’s like a new championship starting over.”
LA GALAXY MIDFIELDER URIEL ANTUNA
On feeling more comfortable:
“Of course, everybody feels very good and I think we have to keep and build from that.”
[Translated from Spanish]
On the win and scoring a goal tonight:
“I am very happy. I am happy to continue to score and making a difference on the team but it’s all teamwork. The whole team is playing well, the team is making a difference and taking advantage of the opportunities we get, and this win is credit to the whole team.”
On the win and the three very important points:
“Yes of course, we all knew the importance of winning and securing the three points this game and our previous one as well. We are giving it our all to be in the Playoffs.”
On the message he was trying to give out with his goal celebration and kissing the Galaxy crest:
“It’s not a message but rather a way of showing my appreciation for giving me the opportunity to be here, and to be able to play again after being in the Netherlands and not playing. It’s a way of showing my appreciation.”
On what the team did right this game:
“I think that the consistency we have had with the opportunities we have created, we have been able to score most chances on gosal, and we also have to highlight the defense. We did make some mistakes but from there on the defense did great. I think we have been playing very well for some games now and I think we have to keep on the same path for the remaining games and ahead of the Playoffs.”
On the LA Galaxy’s speed on the wings and how dangerous they are on the attack:
“That’s what we are working on, to be able to have the capacity to go down the wings and have speed to score the goals that will ultimately give us the victories.”
On traveling to face Real Salt Lake:
“We will try to win because we know how important the remaining games are to be able to be in the highest possible position on the standings for the Playoffs.”
LA GALAXY MIDFIELDER SEBASTIAN LLETGET
On the team's position in the standings:
"It's definitely positive. The most important thing like you said is that we won today and got the three points. It probably wasn't as pretty as we wanted it, I think we got tired in the second half, but the first half was pretty intense. I thought we created a lot of chances we just didn't finish them."
On the team's missed opportunities:
[Translated from Spanish]
"The good thing is we are creating a lot of good chances up top, but we also have to be good defensively. We have to remember that because we can't be giving up easy goals. Luckily that didn't happen tonight, but we have keep moving forward."
On if the quick turnaround might be a factor against Real Salt Lake:
[Translated from Spanish]
"No, we are going to do some regen and focus which is the most important thing right now. Training won't be that intense, but we'll focus on how we can defeat Salt Lake in their stadium."
On certain calls not going their way:
"I thought the one on me was definitely a penalty. The guy has his hands up and it hits his hand that obviously can't happen. Maybe the second one I didn't see too clearly but I thought the first one for sure and I thought a couple of calls he just let them play on. It is okay every ref is different, everybody calls it differently, but I definitely think we should have had more."
On Zlatan Ibrahimović’s possibility of being MLS MVP:
"He's helped this team as everyone knows a lot. He's definitely done his job like he always says. I think he's right there. I think [Carlos] Vela started off the year very well, but it is all about how you finish, and I think Ibra is definitely putting up a good fight, so we'll see how it all ends up and we'll be there to support him."
MONTREAL IMPACT HEAD COACH WILMER CABRERA
On tonight's game:
"It was a good game, but the sad part is we continue making the same mistakes. I've been telling the players we cannot be passing the ball to the goalkeeper. When Montreal Impact pass to the offensive half Montreal Impact is a very good team but they've been used to passing the ball too much to the back and not even two minutes after we score, we pass to the back to the goalkeeper again and we didn't clear the ball and gave the ball away and they score. It's things that have been mentioned that we have been working on but again we need to change that mentality if we want to be successful."
On what is the team's priority right now:
"We have three games, right now we have to focus on the final against Toronto. Right now, that is the only thing that we are going to be thinking of and after that yes of course we have two game against two very good rivals at home and no matter what we have to go for those but first lets dedicate ourselves 100 percent on the Canadian Championship."
On how difficult it will be to qualify for the playoffs:
"It is very difficult because right now we are behind New England, they have a game in hand, and we had the possibility to get to 43 points and now we are depending on some results. That is a bad situation, but we are still alive, and we are going to try now the focus is on Wednesday in the final. It's really valuable and we have been fighting, the team, the club have been fighting for that so hopefully we can go to Toronto and do the best possible to get that trophy to Montreal."
MONTREAL IMPACT GOALKEEPER EVAN BUSH
On the coach not wanting to pass back to the goalkeeper:
"He mentioned that a few times tonight but that has nothing to do with the formation. He has been saying that for a while and the ball comes back to me, I make a poor decision with trying to take a touch and then play but we paid for it. It is as simple as that and that is on me and I'll take responsibility for that."
On what is the team's priority right now:
"I think Wednesday is our number one priority. I think that as much as we tried to win this game and do what we could in this game I think the priority in a lot of ways was still looking forward to Wednesday. Some of the guys that had a couple of little knocks we were able to keep out of the lineup and keep them fresh for Wednesday. Wednesday is a big game for us, big game for the club so hopefully we are ready for that and excited for it."