2011 Jul 4

Sounders' missed penalty kick leds to a nil-nil draw in an evenly played match at LA

Los Angeles Galaxy  0 - 0  Seattle Sounders FC
Home Depot Center, Carson, CA


Los Angeles: Brian Perk; Sean Franklin, AJ DeLaGarza (Greg Berhalter 24'), Omar Gonzalez (Bryan Jordan 79'), Todd Cunivant; Chris Birchall, Juninho, Mike Magee (David Beckham 69'); Landon Donovan, Juan Pablo Angel, Chad Barrett.
Substitutes not used: Kevin Guppy, Paolo Cardozo, Miguel Lopez, Jovan Kirovski.

Seattle: Kasey Keller; James Riley, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, Jeff Parke, Tyson Wahl; Mauro Rosales (Lamar Neagle 90'), Osvaldo Alonso, Erik Friberg, Alvaro Fernandez (Pat Noonan 71'); Roger Levesque, Fredy Montero (Brad Evans 61').
Substitutes not used: Terry Boss, Patrick Ianni, Zach Scott, Nate Jaqua.

Match report from Ron Stickney:

Seattle Sounder FC's second scoreless draw of the season, away at Los Angeles Galazy, is an okay result, but it could have been better as Fredy Montero had a penalty kick ant put it within reach of rookie goalkeeper Brian Perk.

Seattle looked better for most of the first half. Montero gave Roger Levesque a great chance in the 3rd minute with a great cross and Levesque was ball side of his marker, but Levesque struck it poorly and sent it well over the bar.

The best chance of the match came when Seattle was awarded a penalty kick at 18'. Mauro Rosales served Levesque at the top corner of the penalty area and Levesque's square cross was trapped by Montero for a bicycle kick at goal, and defender Omar Gonzalez reached out his arm to deflect it down and Perk dove to keep it out of the net. Montero took the free kick and aimed it left, but it didn't have enough pace to beat Perk, who guessed correctly and parried the shot well away.

Seattle defender Jhon Kennedy Hurtado had a good chance from Tyson Wahl's corner kick, but headed the shot well wide.

LA were forced into an early substitution at 24' when AJ DeLaGarza left after taking a boot to the head from Montero. Gregg Berhalter came on.

LA's first shot didn't come until the 26th minute, when Landon Donovan's cross past goal was shot by Mike Magee, but he popped it up to Kasey Keller. Two minutes later Donovan found Magee again on a far-post run and Magee mishit the shot badly. LA had a great chance when Chad Barrett was fed near the 18-yard line and passed ahead for Juan Pablo Angel, whose turn and shoot from ten yards was a yard wide of the far post.

Los Angeles kept up their momentum to open the second half. Barrett took an early shot and skied it. Seattle had a scare at 50' when Wahl lost Donovan on a long ball and Donovan had an open header, but he hit it softly and right to Keller. LA's momentum continued through 56' when Berhalter had another chance on a cross sent past goal, but he missed the target by yards.

Just past the hour mark Seattle regained the momentum. James Riley fired on goal from a broken corner kick play, forcing a save. A throw-in play led to a quick shot by Erik Friberg, and he fired wide of the far post.

Los Angeles' best chance of the second half came at 68' when Donovan served Angel on the left for a shot at the far post, and Keller got his fingertips on it to send it just wide.

The next stretch went quiet of chances, then at 80' a Seattle corner kick by Wahl gave Hurtado a chance under pressure, but he again headed it wide.

LA had a chance from a long free kick taken by David Beckham, who had subbed in, but it was poorly taken and Berhalter's chip shot landed on the roof.

Seattle substitute Brad Evans had a quick chance on the turn at 82', but he missed by two yards.

At 85' LA had a chance as Barrett was in front of goal to try to bike a cross, but he got only a bit of the ball and the shot went well wide.

Seattle had the last chance with a Wahl free kick from the side of the penalty area deep into added time, but he missed the far post and Jeff Parke kept it alive, but the defense cleared it and the final whistle sounded.

           LA  SEA
Shots:      9   14
Saves:      3    3
Corners:    2    5
Fouls:     15   13
Offsides:   3    6

56' SEA: Friberg cautioned for tripping
90' LA: Donovan cautioned for a tactical foul on Alonso

Referees: Ricardo Salazar; Peter Manikowski, Colin Arblaster; Alejandro Mariscal

Attendance: 27,000

Postmatch Quotes

Seattle Sounders FC

Sigi Schmid - Head Coach

On the match: "It was an exciting game, obviously there were a couple of things that could have influenced the game Kasey Keller makes a big save at the end there on Angel, Fredy Montero misses a penalty kick. Those are key plays that could change the game."

Was Montero No. 1 on the board to take the PK?: "Yeah he was. Evans has been taking the PKs for us. Montero was the No. 2. With Evans being out, we put him at No. 1. Making PKs in big games, he's got to do it."

How do you feel you did in the run of play?: "I thought we did all right. I thought the first half was good for us. I thought the second half there was a period of time where they definitely controlled the game. I felt there was about 15 minutes in the second half where we didn't get a hold of the ball and they kept putting pressure on us. At the end of the game I thought we did all right and we got ourselves back in the game and then when Beckham came on there seemed to be a lot of free kicks happening in midfield. Maybe there is a rule were he has to get six or seven free kicks a game."

Do you think you made Perk work enough?: "I though we made him work at times. I thought Tyson Wahl's cross was something that made him work. Brad Evans almost caught him off his line the one time we saw him off his line to hit it. I thought we forced some back passes to him and he gave a couple of balls away there, popped a couple of balls up. Obviously he came up with a big save on the PK. He did well but you can always make a goalkeeper work more."

On sitting back and playing defensively: "It's just not our style. Our style is pretty much to play on the road the same way we play at home. I think that's why we're a pretty good road team. I think it's been awhile since we've lost on the road. We're going to try and play soccer. We're going to try and go forward. That's the nature of our team. That's the makeup of our team. That's how we're going to try and play."

Did the quad keep Montero from going 90 or was that a tactical sub?: "I thought he had obviously done some work. We wanted to get a little bit of energy on the field with Brad. We felt that was the time-point to do it."

On the last free-kick on L.A.'s end: "The free kick from Tyson? Yeah, it's a ball that you just got to drive across the box and hope it goes off some bodies. He hit it a little bit deeper than maybe he would've liked to and obviously you hope you can grab something that late, but it wasn't to be."

How do you react to the Galaxy losing both center backs?: "Obviously it happens within flow of the game. There's the crowd there and we're not a sport that has timeouts, where you can call them over and take advantage of that. They know what Berhalter brings to the game. I thought with the exception of when he first came on, I thought we did a good job of keeping the ball away from him, because he's a good passer. That was something we always try to do when he's on the field. The other change came so late with Omar Gonzalez it really didn't affect things."

After five-straight losses, does is result somewhat vindicating?: "Obviously you'd rather win, but I think what we've shown is our ability to play competitive soccer with them. They won in Seattle on a fantastic goal by Juninho. They won in Seattle the time before on an unbelievable goal by Buddle. So as long as we can keep the unbelievable goals off the mark we have a chance. Obviously we've struggled scoring goals against them and we have to do a better job of doing that."

On Erik Friberg: "I thought he did well. There's probably not a blade of grass on the field that he doesn't touch at some point. He's all over the place. I thought he worked hard. I thought Juninho usually has a bigger influence on their game. I thought he did a good job of containing Juninho at times. His passing, I'm sure he would've liked it a little better at certain times. But he's a player that plays with a lot of energy and a lot of heart. I was very pleased with what he brings."

Initial thoughts on Portland: "We're excited. We want to go down to Portland and we want to do well. I'm sure they're excited for the game and are looking forward for the game. We want to go down there and we want to give our best for sure. We always want to win season series. This was the first season series with an opponent that we haven't won and we want to make sure we win the season series against Portland."

Fredy Montero

On the penalty kick: "I decided to go to that side, on that post. It was a little short and he dove for it and got it. That's the end of the story."

On the result: "It's always good to tie on the road. It's a different story whether we did good or bad but it's always good to tie away."

On the quad: "I feel better, that's why we made the decision to play, but we have to continue working to be 100 percent."

James Riley

On the result: "Big stage tonight. I thought the guys came out and played well. I thought we were strong in both halves. Obviously you got to deal with the ups and downs, and they kind of had the run of play a little bit. We had it at times, too, and absorbed it when they had it. We did well. They're a quality, quality team. They have dangerous offensive weapons and are very organized defensively. We were able to win key moments defensively and offensively we broke them down a couple times. The result is decent. Obviously we would've loved to win, but we didn't lose. I thought all in all it was all right. They had some easy fouls called for them in easy spots. That's how the game goes and I thought we dealt with it professionally. They're a fantastic set-piece team so I thought we dealt with it appropriately. We'll take the draw, get back to the board and get ready for Portland."

Facing arguably the best team in the league on the road, was this a chance to show what you have?: "Anytime you go out against a quality side like the Galaxy you want to measure yourself. This was a chance on a big stage. This is a tough place to play, especially on the Fourth of July, so it's pretty good to come out of here with a draw. We'll take that. It gives us a little bit of confidence in the second half of the season."

Kasey Keller

What's the vibe in here?: "Definitely a positive vibe. Sure we could have gotten more out of it. They had some good chances as well. Yeah it's frustrating, not frustrating in a bad way but it's much better than how we have played them the last three or four times so on that side we feel good. They are a good team. They have the most points in the league there is a reason for that and we came here and game them a good game.

You guys had played them pretty well before: "No question. Today we got a little bit of that reward. Maybe Angel buries that one or Landon buries that one, then it's a different story. Maybe it could've been better for us. Perk made good save on a penalty. Overall a draw was probably a fair result, but at the same time either team could've stole it. Especially right there at the end. You get that foul and Tyson whips in a nasty ball. Who knows? It bounces in. That stuff has been going in for us lately. Good day, more positive than negative."

On Brian Perk: "When you save penalty on your debut it's not a bad thing to do. He got a clean sheet and saved a penalty; he'll have a lot to build on. It's going to make some interesting decisions for the next game. That is always what you want to do. You need to take advantage of the opportunities that you get in goal because you don't know how many you are going to get and when you do the coaching staff says 'Alright he can play, he got a result for us and came up with a big save.' Maybe it's not his time right now but it gets banked in the archives. Alright you did it for us this time maybe some one is out of form or maybe some one gets injured and you think alright we got some one that can do it."

Pat Noonan

On the result: "Obviously disappointing because our goal was to come in and get three points. I think we played very well at times with our possession and created some quality opportunities. If we finish a couple of them we get out of here with the three points. To come in against a very good team and get a point it's still promising, but of course our goal was to get three. There were some bright moments."

On unbeaten streak: "It's good for confidence when you find ways to win games as opposed to maybe letting them slip away. We got the point here. We're going into Portland, a very tough atmosphere again next week. Our goal again is to get three points. Having won three in a row leading up to this game and getting the tie in a tough environment, there's a lot of positives to take out of it."

On getting some time out on the left: "I think it came from the Open Cup game. I had some minutes out wide and was able to get in some good holes and tried to open the game up with some passing. That was kind of my goal again today. A little bit more of the defensive side, they had a good amount of possession, but just trying to get in dangerous spots and link up so that we can get some opportunities on goal. Obviously we can get better at that, but that was the goal."

On what the offense did well to create chances: "We moved the ball, and when we move the ball and guys are getting into positions early, we're able to get crosses in the box, we're able to get some shots in and around the 18. I don't know what the stats were, but to play against a team like that that's in first place, on the road, I thought he created some very decent opportunities."

On being disappointed to get a tie: "It's a good thing when you're (unhappy) when you're tying games. No matter who you're playing -- on the road, at home, a team that you're better than in terms of the standings, or behind. You expect to win all the games and when you do that you put yourself at an advantage. It's good to be disappointed tonight."

Los Angeles Galaxy

Bruce Arena - Head Coach

On the result: "I think the final score is a fair result. That was a game that was pretty even. I would have liked to have had the chance to make a couple of other substitutions in the second half, but obviously we had to make changes to the center backs; that's difficult. The first change to A.J. was going to have us hampered in the second half. The issue with Omar, that was difficult. Having said that, I think Perk did very well for his first game in the league. I think the adjustments our team made losing two center backs was pretty good, but certainly the best chance out of the run of play was Angel's and obviously the chance in the game was the penalty kick. Having said all that, I think it was a fair result at the end of the game. I give Perk game a lot of credit in his first game. I don't think he was tested a whole lot, but a penalty kick is as much as a test as you are every going to face. A lot of credit to Brian.

On playing Seattle: "It was two teams that were obviously well schooled on each other. It can't be a sloppy game. It can't be a game where you lose concentration ... you get sloppy, you give up chances. We made a couple of mistakes of in the first half and we were fortunate to get out of it. We had a great chance with Angel. It's one of those games. It's a one play game. It's a 1-0 game one way or the other.

On Brian Perk’s first game: "It's nice to know he can play. We have three great goalkeepers. Perk we've had for about a year and we could see as he got some reserve games his confidence grew, he got the experience that he needed. I think tonight he looked like a guy that's played. He's an experienced player at the youth level. He's played in international competition. We didn't throw a player into the game that's going to run around like his head is chopped off. I think the game he got last week in Open Cup was good for him and obviously, playing tonight at home makes it a little easier for him. All I can say, he's a keeper we can put in there and be successful.”

Landon Donovan

On the result: "It was a weird game. It's not often that you start a game with one of your DP's on the bench, your third string goalie and within a half hour you have to take off one of your center backs. It was a weird game, but given all of that, I was really proud of the adjustments that we made, the effort was good, we just weren't sharp. All in all I think that we're actually pretty proud of the performance we put in given everything that happened tonight."

On his team’s attacking play: "Seattle did a really good job of pressing us. There were a few times particularly at the end of the first half and at the start of the second half where we did a good job of passing and getting out of pressure, but for the most part they came after us and we had to be a little bit more direct than we usually are."

On the play of Brian Perk: "He did great. Obviously the penalty was a great save at a really important time of the game. He didn't really put a foot wrong. A few of his kicks were a bit astray but he was good, he was aggressive and smart. It kind of epitomizes what this team is about. I'm pretty confident in saying that there isn't another team that could have their third string goalie playing against maybe the hottest team in the league right now and come away with a shutout."

Brian Perk

On his penalty kick save: "I just looked at him. I thought he was a crafty player, so I'd thought he'd open his hips and close them. And, that's exactly what he did. I guessed the right way. I was very fortunate, but it worked out. I'd seen him play before and I thought he was crafty player and tried to show me one way and go another and that's what he did. And luckily I guessed the right way."

On what he learned after his first start: "I learned that I was a little nervous, but after the first 5, 10 minutes I felt pretty good. There's a lot of things I need to work on, but for the most part it was pretty solid."

On the result: "0-0 is not the best result for your team, I mean, I think three points is what we deserved, but we didn't give up a goal and that's a credit to our back line. We don't concede many goals. Whether it's me, Saunders or Ricketts, it seems like we're always giving zero or one goal. When Omar went down I was thinking, maybe we should take the draw, 0-0 is not the worst result with both our centerbacks down."

David Beckham

On returning to action: "I've been out for three weeks; haven't been able to do anything for three weeks. So, it's good to be able to be back out there again, of course. Obviously I've got a week until the next game so it's going to be a good week."

On if he expected to play tonight: "I didn't expect to play in this game. I've had an epidural and a cortisone injection last week and seemed to react well and took the pain away. Obviously the fracture is still there, but the pain's died down a bit."

Omar Gonzalez

On his injury: "(It happened) at midfield when I got undercut by Levesque and landed straight on my hip. After that I couldn't really run at all. I tried to move, but I just couldn't."

On the penalty kick: "I wasn't worried about it, I knew Perk was going to come up big. So, right after it happened, I walked over to my spot and got ready to chase after the ball and I'm the one who cleared it off the line."