Two of the best teams in the Western Conference faced off in a showdown for the history books. Both teams have clinched a playoff spot, thus making this game all about the rivalry, and a sight to behold for all watching. Both teams have had a rough past against each other, every LA fan remembers that MLS Cup game that went to PKs (LA lost for those who haven’t been keeping track) *sigh*.
Then last year’s Western Conference final where LA beat RSL to head to the MLS Cup. There has also been controversy between RSL’s coach and David Beckham. It seems as though those two will never find a common ground. Fun fact; no team in the MLS has ever won two games on the road against LA Galaxy since 2003. Lineup for LA consisted of two rookies in the back four (AJ Delegarza out with knee injury, Todd Dunivant out with oblique problem). It was do or die for LA.
As the game started off LA looked out of sorts losing the ball with every pass, it seemed everywhere you looked there was a red RSL shirt. Then things turned around, the first big chance for LA came in the third minute, but it took a deflection off an RSL defender into Rimando’s hands. In the 5th minute LA turned up the heat even more. They were firing off shots one after another, Juninho would of had a beauty of a goal if not for the goal post stopping his shot.
LA controlled most of the opening minutes in the first half with some good possession. In the 17th minute Robbie Keane had a world class, TREMENDOUS shot on goal. It was a BEAUTY. Making the score 1-0, LA did not let down. They kept going at RSL with everything they had… Until RSL scored two goals within two minutes of each other. It then became one of those games where if you took your eyes off the TV for a split second, you would miss something crazy. First half possession for LA was 56 %. while RSL came away with 44%. The first half of this game was probably one of the better halves of soccer I have seen in awhile.
Both teams wasted no time jumping on the train in the second half. What came to my mind while the second half was getting underway was LMFAO’s song “Shots,” because that is what was happening. Both teams – shots, shots, shots, shots.
Things started to slow down around the 75th minute; neither team was pressuring the other too much. Bruce was going for the win in the 85th minute as he made two offensive substitutions; Wilhelmsson and Villareal made their appearance. At this point my head was in my hands and I was in the floor on the verge of a breakdown, and that’s what happened. As the final whistle blew, RSL pulled out a win over LA 2-1. It was a heck of a game, and it was the little things that broke LA down in the end. With the win RSL became the first away team to beat LA twice in one season at the HDC since 2003.
STATS- LA Galaxy; Goal (Robbie Keane)
LA’s next game will be against San Jose in two weeks. It’s important for LA to get as many points as possible before playoffs start. If they don’t finish in the top three, LA will have to compete in the wild card game to earn a spot in the Playoff quarterfinals.
photo credit; Major League Soccer’s (MLS) facebook