Sounders Insider

Arena sees another battle coming, but notes importance of not conceding goal

Here's some of what the Galaxy had to say today after opening the two-game series with a 1-0 home win over the Sounders:

HEAD COACH BRUCE ARENA On the importance of the result:“Of course it was important. There were some chances to get a second. Obviously, they had some good chances. Not conceding a goal is important, so that’s a plus. We know it’s going to be a battle there. As you can see, the officiating in these games is important too. I don’t think we quite understand how to deal with this competition with the rules and cards and everything. It’s been crazy. I think it was a little bit hectic in this game. It is what it is. And now we will have two teams going into the game on Sunday with no one suspended, which I guess was the premise behind some of the decisions today. I will give Seattle credit. Good team. No question about it. Seattle is a good team. It will be a battle on Sunday.” On Jaime Penedo’s game:“Solid. Wasn’t tested as much, but in the first half, they had a little flurry off that one throw in and he came up big. That’s obviously critical in this series.” On next week’s lineup:“We don’t know what we are doing next Sunday at this time. We are going to get through the week, get our guys some rest and healthy and then make decisions.” On Stefan Ishizaki:“He played well. Obviously when they drop back their numbers the way they do, you got to use the width of the field and we were able to do that.” LA GALAXY MIDFIELDER LANDON DONOVAN: On the goal:“Of all the results, that was probably the third best. Two-zero or three-zero would have been second and first best. But, they had a few chances too, and keeping that team scoreless isn’t easy. The first objection was not to get scored on, even if it ended up 0-0. Getting the goal was important. A little unlucky and not quite sharp enough to get the second. We are confident. We’ve been there twice this year. Thoroughly dominate in the first game, and we were the much better team for 82 minutes of the second game. We are full of confidence going there. We are going to get their best shot and we look forward to it.” On Jaime Penedo:“Jaime’s been terrific. At the end of the year, he gave up two to three goals that were relevantly similar in the way they were created and the way they were played out. He and Matt Reis, the goalkeeper coach, did a lot of work over the past two weeks on how to do better with those chances. And ironically, those chances that we’ve given up have been very similar. Guys coming in at angles, and he’s made very good saves. He’s been very solid and we need him to make some big saves again if we want to win another championship.” On the physical nature of the game:“You have to play that way this point of the year. The officials made it clear that no one is getting sent off. We have to make sure we are aware of that next weekend, and we play that with that in mind. I’m sure they will as well. It’s going to be even more physical next week. That’s OK. We can play that way.” On Seattle’s game plan:“Very clearly their plan was to get people around that side of the field. We did a good job, especially during the second half, exploiting the right side of the field. Stefan [Ishizaki] did great. [Juninho] did a great job getting the ball there, so we could create chances. It’s about adjustments. We made adjustments from those two games we played them at the end of the year. We feel confident about where we are at now. If they want to play on one side, then we will exploit them on the other side like we did today.” On Tommy Meyer:“Tommy was great. Tommy hasn’t played in a long time. He came in two weeks ago against Salt Lake and was excellent. He was very good again tonight. There were a couple of plays that were a little dicey, but you expect that from a guy that hasn’t played in a long time. I thought he was terrific. I thought that him and Omar [Gonzalez] did a great job shutting down those two. Those two are very, very difficult to play against. They did a great job. And we will need the same next week from them.” LA GALAXY FORWARD ROBBIE KEANE On the game:“Yeah, there was. [Stefan Ishizaki] had a lot of drive on his side. We said at the start of the game we have to switch and play quickly on Ishi’s side. Overall, it was a good performance for us. They came and tried to keep it tight, trying to catch us on the counterattack and get a goal, but they didn’t manage to do it.” On the goal:“Of course, you want to score a few more. It wasn’t to be, so overall, I’m fairly pleased.” On Seattle’s physical nature:“It was the same as it was a few weeks ago when we played. Nothing really, really changed. Certainly there was a lot of persistent fouling on their side, rather than us. It was very clear for everyone to see. It was the same. The same as it was a few weeks ago. Very physical. It’s what you expect for these type of games.” On the referee:“He did okay. I think he did okay.” On the physicality of the game:“We try to play for a win. We don’t have kids on our team. We are grown men. If someone is going to tackle, we’ll tackle back. I don’t want to talk about the physicality of the game – it’s what we do. It’s a man’s game. You have to accept that there will be a few tackles, a few elbows. It’s part of the game. You have to give as good as you get.” On the score line:“Yeah, a goal’s a goal. Of course, you want to score a few more. We wanted to make sure we didn’t concede today, and we didn’t.” LA GALAXY MIDFIELDER MARCELO SARVAS On the play that made him exit the game:“I’m feeling good; I think it’s a very important goal. It’s a very important win, could be more but we cannot play with that, we had to play with what we had and we got a 1-0. In that play, I don’t know, I got hit in my muscle very close to the bone. It was hard when I stepped on my left leg I felt the muscle pulling so I had to stop. I spoke with the doctor and I think we’re going to have to do an x-ray tomorrow. I don’t think it’s something that would keep me out of the next game.” On his goal:“Yea, A.J. [DeLaGarza] had the ball in a position to cross and I held two steps back so he saw me and I think it was a combination movement that allowed us to have the time and space.” On the team’s confidence going into the second leg:“I think we had what we had to do, win the game. Going there, we know that it is going to be tough. It’s a final, but given the situation that it’s artificial grass, that the game won’t be clean, we could make more mistakes, maybe it’s easier for a team when you need to defend. I didn’t see the team play a game this year when they had to push and score a goal. In my opinion, they play very conservative. They keep two guys higher all the time and everyone behind the box so we’ll see what the situation is going to be there.” On what it would mean if his goal sends the Galaxy to MLS Cup“If that happens, I’ll be very pleased. I would be very happy for that. It doesn’t matter who scores; I think we have to evaluate everyone who is running, defending, creating situations. I think our team is giving the biggest effort they can to reach the final.”