Quote Sheet: RSL 1-0 LA


Real Salt Lake
Head Coach Jeff Cassar

On the game:
“It felt good. It really did. I just couldn’t be more proud of our players tonight. Just the effort they put in on both sides of the ball was outstanding. Our substitutions came on and gave us energy and closed out the game. It was a total team effort.”

On Aaron Maund scoring the game-winner:
“Aaron’s been working incredibly hard. He’s found himself in a nice little rhythm right now. I thought him and Chris [Schuler] were beasts back there and Tony and Abdoule were nice bookends to them. Their attacking players are not easy to deal with. Aaron’s in a good spot right now mentally. He’s taking care of himself and he’s a big part of what we’re doing right now.”

“It’s nice for me because I can use this as a fantastic example for the rest of the players, that when your number gets called and you step up, you’re rewarded. Aaron’s doing that. It’s been a long time for him to get a rhythm going. But he’s found himself in a nice spot right now.”

On the defense:
“I feel like we had a good defensive plan against them. Truthfully, all the credit needs to go to the players. Because we really had time to walk through an idea that I had, go over it on video, talk about it, but all the credit needs to go to the players because they were the ones out there doing it and working hard. We knew that it was going to take a team effort and a full defensive effort, and that also led to quite a few nice attacking plays for us.”

“It was just making sure there was pressure on their two defensive midfielders so they weren’t spraying the ball where they wanted to on the field. It worked great from Javier, it worked great from Jordan Allen, it was off the charts to take out their two defensive midfielders. And then Luke was sitting in the hole and reading the game very well, and obviously the rest of the players were doing their part too.”

On having several chances throughout the match:
“I was just trying to stay levelheaded today, because I believe in these players, and their time was going to come. If they keep putting themselves in good positions to get chances, it’s going to come. I firmly believe in that. I firmly believe in all of our forwards. It was one of those nights, before Aaron scored, we were really close. And it came from a lot of different places. It wasn’t just our forwards, it was our midfielders, it was our outside backs, it was our center back. When you can share the wealth, it becomes a little bit harder to zero in on some people and on a different night, Joao has one, Devon has one, Javier has one, Jordan Allen has one. I firmly believe in the guys and we’re going to keep doing what we’re doing and I couldn’t be more proud of them tonight.”

On making adjustments when Steven Gerrard came into the game:
“To be fair, I thought [Gerrard] was going to come in at defensive midfield, when we saw him warming up at halftime. So we prepared a little bit for that. Credit to the players for recognizing that he was playing higher up the field, and credit to our center backs and Luke Mulholland, who were really recognizing the dangers. There was a couple of points in the second half where we got a little lucky I think. But, overall we limited him to very few chances.”

On making substitutions:
“You had to prepare [for extra time.] We just played the game on Saturday, so I had to be mindful of the players that have been playing a lot of minutes, and how we were going to end the game. I would have maybe made a late substitution, very late in the game, but we also had to prepare if something bad was to happen that we held that sub. I think the substitutions went very well tonight. We had to think about it a lot because the game could have easily gone on tonight.”

On having a good performance and getting a good result:
“Yeah, it’s a one and done in the Cup, so you have to have these performances or you’re going to be out of the tournament. I think the players recognize that we’re going to need to work extremely hard and be focused for the entire game to get a result against a very good team.”

Defender Aaron Maund

On his goal:
“So it came off a set piece, it came out a little bit.  We recovered it.  Some nice play on the sideline, I think it was Luke, Tony, Javier combination on the sideline, then Luke whips it in.  He puts a perfect ball in there, I just had to get my head on it.  So credit to Luke.”

On timing the ball from Luke Mulholland:
“That’s been an emphasis of mine.  I’ve been trying to work with Tyrone Marshall and he’s gotten me in shape.  I’ve been working every day at that.  It’s hard for me to get those headers down.  I get in good spots and I’m heading it up.  Finally I was able to get it down and get it on target.”

On his reaction:
“I think the team rallied around me.  I just really love playing for this team.  I love this team and we really came together tonight.  I’m just happy about it.”

On what the win means:
“It means we’re going to the semifinal of this tournament.  But it means a lot for us because we really wanted to win this game.  We thought it was going to be a team effort and it brought us together and we got the job done.  It’s really rewarding to put it all on the line like that and come out with a victory.”

Goalkeeper Jeff Attinella

On earning the win on short rest:
“What a response, huh?  I don’t think a lot of people outside of this locker room thought we were going to win this game tonight.  We did.  And it’s on to the next one.  It’s two games left and we’ve got a real shot at winning this thing.  The response was incredible.  In all honesty, I feel like this whole month we’ve been playing good soccer.  We had a really bad 10 minutes – a really bad 10 minutes.  But besides that we’ve been playing well.  We’ve been playing better.  And tonight it was a total team effort and … what a win.  That should be the thing that jumpstarts the rest of the season.”

On squaring off 1v1 with Steven Gerrard in the second half:
“When Kaka was alone, I leaned a little bit and he caught me.  And he caught me like that (snaps fingers) … it was quick.  So when he was coming in I thought ‘Just stand my ground.  Stay up, stay up, stay up and wait for him to do something.’ And then fortunately for me he opened up his hips and that’s when I thought I had it.  It’s a lesson learned and that’s good for me because I’m not getting as many games as regular starters.  I’m happy that I took what I learned going against Kaka and applied it to the next guy.”

On how this game can help the rest of the year:
“We all met as a group yesterday after training and we talked about how a total team effort is what it’s going to take the rest of the year.  We don’t have guys like Gerrard coming in.  All those big signings coming in, we don’t have those signings, so the way that we’re going to be successful in this locker room is a total team effort.  Hopefully we can take what we learned tonight because I think everyone there knows that was one of the best games we’ve played all year.  We can take what we learned tonight and apply it every Saturday or every Wednesday or whenever the games are and try to turn this season around a little bit.”

LA Galaxy
Head Coach Bruce Arena

Thoughts on goal keeper Brian Rowe’s performance:
“Closely played match. I think both keepers did a very good job keeping their team in the game.  Atinella did a very good save on Lletget in the first half, a couple saves in the second half. Good one on Gerrard.  Rowe made some good saves. Obviously we got a little tired at the end with the altitude and all. The game could have gone either way.  Give them credit and hope they finish it off.”

Thoughts on Steven Gerard’s 45 minutes:
“He did fine. He’s going to be a good player for us, but it’s going to take some time though.

Midfielder Steven Gerard

Thoughts on the match:
“…I take responsibility for that, but you know the big game of this week is always going to be Friday and we move on. Can’t change the past. We look forward to trying to get back to our winning ways on Friday.”

Thoughts on his personal insight playing the match:
“I’m not surprised. I’ve had two 45 minutes in 7-8 weeks, so it’s maybe not a surprise that I’m a little bit off the ball at the moment, but I’m strangely very happy at the moment.  Gave me a flavor of the MLS standard tonight and I’m very confident that the goals and the assists and the dangerous play will come along for me in the future.”

Thoughts on his fitness level:
“I walk away disappointed with the result.  I move away with another 45 minutes out the locker, so that will get me towards full fitness. But I’m walking away with a cheeky smile, because I’m very happy with my feeling in the game I’m very confident moving forward.”

Thoughts on his first minutes being in a quarterfinal match:
“It’s been a whirl wind change over the last week or two. I’m two weeks new to a brand new challenge and a very big change and I’m still searching for 100 percent fitness, but I can feel it coming. I’d be very frustrated and disappointed if I wasn’t getting chances while the chances are there. I know and have full belief in myself that them chances will sooner rather than later go in the back of the net.”

Thoughts on the quality of MLS:
“It’s good, but I’m happy and I’m confident that I can deliver at this standard moving forward.”

Thoughts on getting into the flow of the game:
“I think always when you play at altitude when you have your first couple of strides or sprints you feel it in the throat and you feel it in the lungs, but as soon as I got me second wind that was fine. And I felt really dangerous. I felt like when I come in and play behind Robbie we create chances. Unfortunately we never took one. We’ll look at that and assess all and we’ll put that right on Friday.”

Goalkeeper Brian Rowe

Thoughts on the match:
“It felt good and I tried to keep us in as we could. Both teams had good chances going both ways. Getting towards the end there, it’s just one of those ones we kind of, both teams are getting tired and you want to kill it off and you want to make sure there’s no really scrambles or chances at the end there. They did a good job at putting the ball in front of the goal and it actually paid off for them.”

Thoughts on RSL’s goal:
“You tend to see if after a little scramble like that. A save goes back out to the middle, gets cleared out. Maund, their center back is up there and the one who scored it, so you see that after a scramble and you have bigger guys up there in the box and it was a good finish”

Thoughts on his performance:
“Yeah I felt good about the performance.  It sucks in the end. It’s not enough and you can only do so much as a goalie. You can try to keep out there as much as you can really try to get some confidence, especially on the road. They came out and had a good performance Salt Lake, so I just try to keep this going the best that I could and the other guys fought well and just in the end it didn’t go our way.”