Schmid cautiously optimistic after LA Galaxy draw in his first game back

CARSON, Calif. – After a week full of surprises, new LA Galaxy head coach Sigi Schmid finally got back to what he’s done for most of the past several decades: stand on the sidelines and coach.

Seeing his team play a competitive game put a new perspective on his handful of observations from training and watching the team from the stands. The Galaxy weren’t able to get three points on Saturday, extending their winless streak to six games with a 0-0 draw vs. his former club the Seattle Sounders.

The team also continued their struggles at home, where they’ve only won once in 2017. Now that his hands are in the dough, Schmid has some ideas as to why the team has struggled in front of their supporters.

“Obviously you can add today’s game onto the struggle list if you want to,” said Schmid, “but for me, when I look at the last few results that the team has had at home, I consider this a little more of a success.

“The struggles for this team have been a little bit bad luck,” he continued. “But it’s also that the defending at home hasn’t been as focused as it needs to be and the team got caught in transition. When you’re at home sometimes you’re sometimes more attacking-minded, and then when you get caught on transition, your numbers are down and the other team gets at you.”

Schmid admitted that the Sounders were able to press them in transition, and that it would have to be worked on as their new head coach continues to introduce his style of play to the Galaxy. He liked some of what he saw from his players, but he’s also identified some areas for offensive improvement.

“Right now we’re still in the learning process of getting to know each other,” said Schmid. “They’re getting to know me, I’m getting to know them.

“They understand a little bit what I want in terms of defense and in terms of commitment. It’s not so much defense as it is commitment to help each other out on that part of the field.”

Saturday marked the Galaxy’s first shutout since a scoreless draw at D.C. United on June 3. In retrospect that draw was a high-water mark, as the Galaxy have won just one game since, slipping from a team known for road success to one struggling for results of any kind.

“I think our ball movement needs to get quicker,” said Schmid, “and that will help our offense. I think we possessed the ball and sometimes we connect passes … but it’s got to move quicker.

“We have individual players in [Giovani] dos Santos and [Romain] Alessandrini and [Emmanuel] Boateng and even [Gyasi] Zardes who can take people on and beat people. But that difference of half a second in getting the ball to them and not to them is the difference in being able to beat people or not.”