Archive | November, 2011

LA Galaxy win 2011 MLS Cup

Posted on 21 November 2011 by iyeo

It didn’t feel like one day, or even a whole season was riding on Sunday night’s MLS Cup matchup. Continue Reading

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Galaxy defeat Real Salt Lake to Advance to MLS Cup Final

Posted on 07 November 2011 by iyeo

The Galaxy will be finishing its season at the Home Depot Center approximately two weeks from now. Continue Reading

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Galaxy eliminate Red Bulls, Advance to Western Conference Final

Posted on 04 November 2011 by iyeo

After the feistiness of the first leg of the two-game Western Conference playoff series between the Los Angeles Galaxy and New York Red Bulls at Red Bull Arena on Sunday, the return leg at the Home Depot Center on Thursday night was sure to be entertaining.

The two teams delivered alright. An early New York goal, followed by one player who quickly asserted himself as the Galaxy fans’ public enemy No. 1 and an overall gutsy effort from David Beckham was followed by two LA goals, which were more than enough to send Los Angeles back into the Western Conference final courtesy of a 2-1 win over the Red Bulls.

“Certainly a difficult game tonight,” Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena said. “Our players showed the kind of character they did to get back in the game in the first half and have a pretty good second half.”

The win clinches a two-goal victory over New York and brings LA to its third straight conference final, where the only obstacle standing between them and what would be literally a home game in the MLS Cup final two weeks from Sunday evening will be Real Salt Lake, the team that denied them the 2009 MLS Cup in Seattle.

“We played a decent game,” Red Bulls head coach Hans Backe said. “We gave it a go for 90 minutes and I would say it was two even games.”

Trailing in the match 1-0 and tied on the aggregate from the fourth minute on, LA was on the offensive for most of the half, but found the go-ahead goal elusive. In the 38th minute, Chris Birchall launched a long volley was collected by Rost, but he spilled it back into play towards Keane. Rost though recovered and stuck his left hand out at Keane’s rebound attempt just enough to prevent the goal. LA’s chance finally came in the 41st minute, as Beckham’s corner went into the box and Magee headed the ball over Rost and into the back net for the match equalizer and aggregate lead.

“We dropped a little too deep after our goal and gave LA too much possession in the first half,” Backe said.

LA then got its chance to put the series on ice in the second half. It started in the 74th minute when Beckham had the ball inside the 18. Beckham, who had been physically mangled by the Red Bulls for most of the night, received a boot by Roy Miller near his neck, thereby forcing referee Hilario Grajeda to whistle for the penalty spot. Donovan did the rest a minute later, as Rost went right and Donovan went left for LA’s second goal of the match and what proved to be an insurmountable two-goal aggregate lead.

Despite playing a goal down against a Galaxy side that had not lost at home all season, New York showed that they weren’t simply going to step aside for the Galaxy. In the fourth minute, Thierry Henry sent a ball forward for Luke Rodgers, who sprinted past Omar Gonzalez into the penalty area and proceeded to beat Josh Saunders far post to give the Red Bulls the aggregate equalizer.

Rodgers though was just getting started. The controversial English striker tried to disposes David Beckham on the ensuing restart, but his studs up challenge instead resulted in a yellow card. Rodgers was fortunate to avoid a sendoff in the ninth minute while chasing down a forward ball. Rodgers didn’t keep the ball alive, but he also didn’t win any further popularity contests with the fans when he launched a dangerous howler into the crowd, further enraging the LA fans.

“We started off bad and it wasn’t what we had planned,” Beckham said. “It was a dissapointing start, but the way we adjusted ourselves showed the character of our team.”

LA’s first chance came in the ninth minute when Beckham led a Galaxy break and fired a rocket on target, but sailed an inch over the crossbar. Momentum looked to further swing towards the Galaxy in the 16th minute when midfielder Teemu Tainio had to leave the match with what coach Hans Backe stated was a hamstring injury.

However, a scary moment occured for the Galaxy around the 28th minute when Beckham collided with Dane Ricahrds. The collision looked to further aggravate the back spasms that had plagued him throughout the season. Beckham was in a state of wooziness for several minutes, to a point which smelling salts had to be applied, but Beckham somehow shook it off and made his way back onto the pitch.

“They would’ve had to carry him off the field tonight.” Landon Donovan said of Beckham’s effort.

For Los Angeles, they move on despite the absence of midfielder Juninho, who was serving a one-match suspension due a red card given for his role in the post-match fireworks during Sunday’s first leg. Chris Birchall filled in Juninho’s spot and started off slowly, but recovered to turn in a solid performance as the match went on.

“He had Henry, he had about four other guys buzzing around in the middle of the field and he did an amazing job doing it by himself,” Mike Magee said of Birchall’s effort. “You can’t say enough good things about the things Birchie did tonight.”

LA now looks ahead to its mouth-watering matcup with incoming Real Salt Lake for the Western Conference championship. The match is set for Sunday evening.

Los Angeles Galaxy 2, New York Red Bulls 1
Western Conference semifinal, second leg
November 3, 2011; Home Depot Center

Scoring Summary
NY – Luke Rodgers (Thierry Henry) 4
LA – Mike Magee (David Beckham) 42
LA – Landon Donovan (Penalty) 75

Discipline Summary
NY – Luke Rodgers (Unsporting Behavior) 5
LA – Landon Donovan (Unsporting Behavior) 46+
NY – Thierry Henry (Reckless Tackle) 61
NY – Jan Gunnar Solli (Tactical Foul) 81

New York Red Bulls – Frank Rost, Jan Gunnar Solli, Stephen Keel, Tim Ream, Roy Miller, Dane Richards, Dax McCarty (Juan Agudelo 64), Teemu Tainio (Stephen Auvray 17), Joel Lindpere (Medhi Ballouchy 87), Luke Rodgers, Thierry Henry.

Substitutes not used – Bouna Condoul, Carlos Mendes, Matt Kassel.

Los Angeles Galaxy – Josh Saunders, Sean Franklin, Omar Gonzalez, AJ DeLaGarza, Todd Dunivant, Landon Donovan, David Beckham (Michael Stephens 78), Chris Birchall, Mike Magee, Chad Barrett (Adam Cristman 81), Robbie Keane (Paolo Cardozo 89).

Substitutes not used – Donovan Ricketts, Frankie Hejduk, Dasan Robinson, Jovan Kirovski.

Referee: Hilario Grajeda
Assistants: Kermit Quisenberry, Paul Scott
Fourth Official: Ramon Hernandez
Weather: Partly Cloudy and 63 degrees
Attendance: 20,000
Time of match: 1:53

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