The following quotes were taken when LA Galaxy Players and Coaches spoke with the media following the LA Galaxy’s penalty kick shootout loss to Colorado in the Western Conference Semi-Finals.

BRUCE ARENA

On missing Landon Donovan in the second half:

“Sure we missed him, but what are we going to do. It is part of the game and after 90 minutes you kind of have to think that the game completely swings in their favor because of the altitude. And when you lose in a penalty shoot-out like that, you can’t blame anyone but yourself. To be there, though, that was the ideal situation given the circumstances.”

On the team’s attack tonight:

“It was an intense, and obviously a tight, game because of the circumstances. I think generally, a poorly played game.”

On Jelle Van Damme’s performance:

“Jelle [Van Damme] was very good today. Probably the best player on the field.”

On tactics going into PKs:

“Obviously, they have a very experienced goalkeeper and we don’t. Maybe the difference was the goalkeeper today.”

On Pablo [Mastroeni]’s job this season:

“I think he’s done a good job. I think teams that play at altitude or on artificial turf should have a slight advantage in this league and I think they took that to heart. They’re a good solid team, not the greatest attacking team but they defend well and they take advantage of the home field with the altitude. They push hard as a team and battle for 90 minutes. I think it has produced results for them.”

On [Shkëlzen] Gashi’s goal:

“I think he hit a great ball. Maybe if our goalkeeper’s techniques are a little bit better, he has a chance to make a save. The ball moved, you could see it knuckle a little bit. I don’t think he was necessarily ready for the shot. It was the difference in the game.”

On [Sebastian] Lletget’s performance:

“I think he did okay. He’s had a good year for us playing in central midfield and at outside midfield, it will take him a bit more time but he had a very good year. The midfield play today was just a scramble with collisions and people on the ground too much.”

On Giovani [dos Santos]’ performance:

“Not much of a factor. It’s the whole part of his learning curve where he has to have a greater presence game in and game out to be a really special player. He has some great qualities and I think as we get into next year it will be a second full year of playing in his professional career properly. He should be more demanding of himself to have a greater presence game in and game out.”

On Robbie Rogers and Steven Gerrard’s performance:

“I think they did well. Robbie [Keane] didn’t take a PK because he hurt his groin and couldn’t take a penalty. I thought Stevie [Gerrard] did really well. Obviously, he’s been out almost eight weeks and it’s been difficult getting back. Today, when called upon, he did his job and took his penalty the way you would expect Steven Gerrard would take his penalty.”

On [Shkëlzen] Gashi’s goal:

“I saw him lining it up when he had space with distance and he was trying to get back and get set. It looked like it started outside the goal and moved back. With the elevation and the way he struck it, it was a good goal off the post and in.”

On losing the game the way they did:

“PK’s are always a tough way to lose. You look back at the whole season and look at how well we’ve come together as a team and how well we’ve been playing for the last couple weeks. To have it come down to five penalty kicks is a tough way to have the season end. We fought the whole time and we were in it until the end – it was a tough way to lose.”

On the lack of time between PKs:

“I felt like it was a normal pace – just one right after another. With the first one on [Kevin] Doyle, I’m a little frustrated because I guessed the right way. That’s when he kind of jammed me a little bit. It’s tough when it comes right underneath you and fast. I think if I would’ve kept that one out, it would have kept the momentum going for our kickers.”

On the good momentum early in the match:

“When you get action early and you’re able to keep the ball, it definitely checks you into the game. It gets you going as a team. Coming into the game we knew that they would have a lot of energy early – with the altitude, with their pace – we thought they were going to be all over us. Being able to keep it zeroes in the first twenty minutes really helped us in the long run. It gave us a chance to still stay in it.”

On the team’s season:

“There’s always things to build on. I haven’t reflected the whole year yet. We’re still trying to take this all in right now. A loss is always tough and the season-ending will kind of take some time to sink in. I think with some reflection of this year we’ll be stronger for next year.”

On if there’s more pressure knowing the other keeper is Tim Howard:

“No – I’m not going up against Tim. Being a goalie, I think the pressure in a situation like that is on the kickers. It’s one where they have to finish it and they’re expected to. You have to get up to the line and try to pick a way that you’re feeling and unfortunately that wasn’t right on a couple of them.”

On the difficulty of coming off early with an injury:

“Everyone wants to be out there. We didn’t play great but we played well enough to get something out of the game. It was a tough way to lose.”

On having to watch the PKs from the sidelines:

“PK’s are always hard to watch on the sidelines. I would put our PK takers up against anybody and we have to give Tim [Howard] credit. He made a couple of great saves. We have as good of penalty takers – men who take them for their national teams and guys that have taken them forever. We have good kickers.”

On if LA got the possession they wanted:

“They’re a good team and they play well here. We knew they were going to come out with a lot of energy. I think where we made it hard on ourselves was that we didn’t make enough good passes to get out of pressure and we allowed them to keep coming at us. We knew it wasn’t going to be easy. That being said we lost on probably a one in a one-hundred thousand type of a shot. At the end of the day, you have to tip your hat and say congrats.”

On LA’s energy after the Rapids goal:

“Nothing really changed. We were tied at that point. We knew we could give up another goal and it wouldn’t mean anything – we still had to score. It’s a little deflating when you have to give up a goal like that when you feel like you’re not playing poorly enough to be down a goal but that’s part of the game and we were fine. We wanted to get into halftime and try to find a way to get a goal.”

On how frustrating it is to end the season like this:

“It is frustrating. I think in an ideal world you play this game with 11 guys that are fit and healthy the whole time. When you have to have several substitutions due to injury, it probably caught up to us in the end and it didn’t allow us to play how we wanted.”

ROBBIE KEANE

On his injury during the game:

“On the free kick in the corner, I kicked it with my left and then whatever happened. I sort of strained it or did something to it. Obviously, I couldn’t come off. It’s very frustrating but we got through it in the end. I made sure to keep moving but I obviously had an issue. Listen, that’s the way it goes in football. It happens but it doesn’t matter now, unfortunately.”

On how the Rapids limited them offensively:

“They played in a way that suited them. Everything in the channel – chasing everything. They didn’t really let us play and the whole game we didn’t really have any chances to. Your first home game is very important. It’s always important to get that second goal because one goal is never enough as we have seen today.”

On not getting the chance to shoot a PK:

“It’s irrelevant anyways, they scored every one. If I could’ve stuck it in the corner or not, I don’t know.  I would’ve maybe shot it in the middle. But it doesn’t matter – we’re out. Good luck to Colorado. I thank all the efforts from the players, all the staff, and all of you guys this season. It’s been up and down season for everybody and it’s never easy to go out straight on penalties – it’s a lottery. Once it comes to penalties it’s different. Their goalkeeper was very, very good today so there’s certainly no blame on anybody. We just came short.”

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