New LA Galaxy goalkeeper made his Galaxy debut last night, starting in place of Carlo Cudicini and getting his first victory. He allowed two goals in the 4-2 win, although the second was in garbage time shortly before the final whistle. The Panamanian looked solid, and with a Central American opponent on Tuesday will likely start again.
Like his counterpart Cudicini, Penedo didn't have to do much. Only three of Salt Lake's shots were on target, and two of them went in. That's the same type of low number of shots/high number of goals ratio that turned fans off Carlo Cudicini, but Penedo did make a bit near corner save that showed quick decision making. Taking away the garbage goal with a ball that should have been cleared, Penedo only got beat low to allow RSL's first goal.
"I thought he had a good game. He wasn't tested a whole lot, but [he] was solid."
It could be the case that Bruce Arena knew he wanted to use Penedo to start in CONCACAF Champions League, so he gave him a chance to get first team minutes. However, this wasn't an average MLS opponent. RSL are top of the league, and have been getting goals from all phases of the game. The Galaxy defense gets much of the credit for limiting Salt Lake's looks on goal. While LA was able to get twelve shots inside the center of the penalty area against the new look Salt Lake back line, RSL only got off three with the majority of their shots from from outside the penalty box.
"My reason for starting Jaime is I thought it was the best decision to make today and we wanted to see him with our team."
Penedo showed the quick thinking ability that had him coming off his line at the appropriate times, something Cudicini has lacked in. He only had to make one punch, breaking up a Javier Morales corner kick.
Fully expect Jaime Penedo to start against Cartagines on Tuesday, but we'll see if the starting position is truly his with the road trip to Vancouver this upcoming weekend. Cudicini was a coach's decision, and he's got another one to make this week.