Well Sounders fans, the match started about as odd as possible, which is fitting for this season. After Clint Dempsey was ruled out through a hamstring injury Chad Barrett started up front, and within the first minute had fired the Sounders to a 1-0 lead over rivals Los Angeles thanks to a brilliant cross from Erik Friberg, but then promptly injured his hamstring during the celebration and had to come off within 4 minutes. Rookie Cristian Roldan replaced the goal scorer. Bizarre.
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13 minutes in the good feelings fell apart as Gyasi Zardes latched onto a brilliant cross from Juninho to equalize for LA Galaxy, playing in front of a raucous crowd in Carson, CA thanks to the MLS debut of one Giovani Dos Santos. For most of the first half, however, the supporters in Rave Green had more to cheer about, as the Sounders were kicking the ball about the pitch and seemingly had a chance to score whenever they got near the goal, but at the half it was still just 1-1. Given the chances exchanged by both sides, the 2nd half looked set to be an enthralling affair.
Shortly after the halftime break, LA’s Robbie Keane fired the home side ahead. A defensive breakdown between Thomas and Dylan Remick allowed De La Garza to find Giovani Dos Santos, whose poor first touch still found Robbie Keane near the penalty spot, where he then scored his 11th goal of the season to put the home side ahead.
In the 63rd minute, Dos Santos was involved yet again, and this time got his name on the score sheet for the LA Galaxy. Dos Santos made a long run in behind the defense and Robbie Keane found him with a great ball to put him in alone on goal, where the No. 10 couldn’t miss. 3-1, LA Galaxy with 25 minutes to play, and the home side searching for more goals. LA nearly added to their lead twice more in quick succession, but the play of Stefan Frei kept the bleeding to a minimum.
Sounders fans can take comfort that, eventually, the team will return to full health and should get back on winning ways, it just won’t be this week.
If you’re interested, match stats can be found here.