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November 7, 2010 at 10:42 PM

Sounders FC 1, LA Galaxy 2 — postgame L.A. quotes

LA Galaxy Head Coach Bruce Arena

On tonight’s win:

“It’s obviously a very good win for our team. I thought we played very well in the first half. The second half, we were a little bit sloppy in the last 20 minutes. If we had been a little smarter, a little sharper, perhaps we would have gotten that third goal and really killed the game. Give Seattle credit, they never quit. They came at us right until the end. It was a tough battle for 95 minutes.”

On tonight’s performance compared to others this season:

“We played well in the first half. Whether it is the best we have played all season, I’m not sure. In a game of this magnitude, this time of the year, I am pleased with it. Whether it is the best we have played, I don’t know, but it was certainly good enough to carry us through the second half, and push us through in the series.”

On the injury to Donovan Ricketts:

“No, but obviously, [Fernandez] went in with him and you could see he got cleated. We were hopeful that it was only a bruise and not a ligament or anything and that is what it turned out to be. But it took him five or ten minutes to shake it off.”

On the defensive performance:

“They played well for 70 minutes. I think we got a little tired and Seattle started throwing everyone forward. We didn’t do a good enough job getting to the ball. We gave it away at times, a little bit too early. All in all, I think they played well. I think this Montero is a terrific player and to be able to hold him in two games is pretty impressive. They have a good team, and we played well. We are going to need more of that next week against Dallas.”

On starting Eddie Lewis over Todd Dunivant:

“Eddie played well last week. He is pretty rested. Todd didn’t get into practice until Thursday, so we felt Eddie was a little fitter, and a little bit more prepared to play in this game.”

On David Beckham’s set pieces:

“Terrific. The second one in particular, that Omar scored on, was a great goal. David is getting back in form. He had a tough week recovering from the field in Seattle. He started to come around on Friday. I thought he put in a good effort tonight. His reputation on set pieces is well-known, well-respected, and well-earned. Tonight, it was the difference in the game.”

On the defensive effort to keep the ball from Seattle’s wingers:

“It is having a collection of players behind the ball and being in good blocks. Also, having a good understanding of where their strength is, and their strength is certainly in Zakuani and Montero, but at times, Nkufo did a decent job of coming in underneath and getting them possession and letting them advance the ball. There wasn’t that particular tactic as much as we had to have a good combined effort in defending which we have gotten in this series, and I think that is the way we were able to neutralize Seattle’s attack.”

LA Galaxy Forward Landon Donovan:

On the team’s defensive performance:

“It’s the playoffs. That’s what it takes. We have guys with a lot of experience in how to play in games like this. Talk about the defense all you want, but we still scored two goals and had some chance to score more.”

On the wing play of the Sounders:

“I watched a lot of their games at the end of the year, and that was certainly their strength. Zakuani and Nyassi were playing very well, so we knew if we took that part of their game away, we would beat them. They didn’t do as well as they had in previous games and I would attribute that to how well we played.”

On the team’s desire to defeat the Sounders

“We heard for a week before we played them how happy they were to play us in this series, and my guess is that they probably have some different feelings now.”

On the injury to Donovan Ricketts:

“We have seen him go down before. Like all goalies, he puts his body on the line. He is tough and when all is said and done, he is a tough guy, but also we are ok with it because we have got a guy behind him (Josh Saunders) who could start on most teams in this league.”

On the two goals:

“Great finishes. Fantastic service from David. This is the best David has played since he has been a Galaxy player. He is inspiring everyone with the way he is running, the way he is defending, with the way he is talking on the field and leading. He has been fantastic.”

LA Galaxy Forward Edson Buddle

On the fans chanting MVP:

“It feels good. At the end of the day the league makes the decision, but it’s good that the fans recognize the way I’ve been playing.”

On his first goal:

“I think the ball just went over Omar’s head and when that happened I just continued my run and got a good head on it and redirected it. In the playoffs thing are going to be tight, so I expected that (Marshall to be marking tight on the play), but I was still able to get good contact on it and that’s why I found the net.”

On his confidence:

“This season has been going pretty well, as far as scoring goals. My team is getting me the ball in the right position and it’s making my job a lot easier.”

On the Galaxy’s experience advantage over Seattle:

“I think last year’s experienced helped with this year. It feels like we’ve been here before and we’re hungry to get back to the Final and finish the job. I can definitely feel that in the locker room.”

Overall thoughts on FC Dallas:

“From the last matchup we just played, not too long ago, it’s going to be very physical and they have good chemistry. It’s going to be tough to get opportunities, especially in a semifinal game.”

LA Galaxy Defender Omar Gonzalez:

On his goal:

“Definitely. I think that I could have gotten at least the two before hand. The one Edson scored on, I was pretty close too. I was feeling pretty good, and just happy to get one.”

On the set piece that set up his goal:

“It was a foul outside the box, maybe about ten yards outside the box on the right side. I was just trying to get into that space behind them and I curled my run inside, instead of trying to go behind them and I just found a ton of space.”

On David Beckham’s free kicks:

“David does wonders with the ball, so it is just great having him on this team. He really showed everyone why he is here.”

On the defensive performance:

“It is one of the strongest. We still gave up a goal which is kind of a bummer. I would have rather had a shutout, but you know it happens. We did well enough in the first game and tonight to be up two goals. I think we did well and we just have to keeping playing well defensively and go from there.”

LA Galaxy Midfielder David Beckham:

On if the team’s character this season:

“We had a good opportunity last year. Obviously, we didn’t go all the way and win the whole thing, so we are happy so far and we are performing well. I think the character is showing through. We still have two matches, obviously one more to go to get through to the final, and hopefully we can do that. We can only do that with hard work, character, and the professionalism that we have shown so far.”

On his drive to succeed:

“It doesn’t make any difference. I am always driven to be successful, and I am always driven to win. Obviously, having the injury was a disappointment, but my drive has never been an issue. I have always wanted success. I am 35-years-old now and I still want it as much as I did when I was 18 and 19.”

On his free kicks:

“Obviously, it is what I have done for many years, but it is important to me to have players to put the ball on the top of their heads or on their feet. I know that if I put the ball in the right area, we have brave enough players, we have good enough players to score goals. It worked tonight. Some other games, it hasn’t worked, but tonight it worked.”

On regaining full fitness:

“I think obviously it is my kind of preseason. I’m still trying to get fitness. It helps when I play the full 90 minutes. I’m still getting the aches and the pains of preseason. I felt physically good tonight. I think if I look after my body like I have done since I have been back, then hopefully I will continue to progress.”

On recovering from playing on Seattle’s turf:

“It was a tough week recovering. When you play on that kind of surface, especially after the injury that I had, it is going to take time. It was a good week because I got most days in training. I think there is only one day that I missed and the rest was good. Tonight was a good night for us.”

LA Galaxy Goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts:

On the team’s strong defensive performance:

“We are finishing the way we started. Strong defensively. If you want to win a championship, you have to be strong defensively, so that is good.”

On the possibility of leaving the game due to injury:

“No, I never leave games unless something is broken, so no chance. It was painful initially, but as the game went on, it got a little bit better.”

On their goal:

“They needed to score. We knew they were going to come hard. Unfortunately, I let a soft goal in and it put us on our back foot for the remainder of the game, but we came through.”

LA Galaxy Defender Todd Dunivant

On playing 10 minutes:

“It felt good. Didn’t feel anything. It was good to get out there and get back into the flow and running again. So, yeah, it felt great.”

On the Galaxy’s effort:

“Superb. When you get two goals in the first half and put them on their heels like that and get a 3-0 advantage, obviously it takes a lot of the pressure off and really makes the game for you. So that was great, got us to a start and we were able to defend off of that.”

On the pairing of Gonzalez and DeLaGarza:

“They’ve done great. Every time he’s been asked too, AJ has stepped in and done a good job for us and he’s done it in the big games in the last little bit. They are on a good form, they won the National Championship together in Maryland and they are carrying that same success over to this.”

On if that was the Galaxy’s best game:

“I wouldn’t say that. I thought we could have finished the game a little bit better, we gave them a few too many chances when the game opened up, so I think there’s still room for improvement, but when you score two goals off of set pieces like that and finish your chances that’s doing things right.”

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