Look ahead to Real Salt Lake: LA Galaxy eager to start West Semis on the right foot

03 November 4:47 pm

Look ahead to Real Salt Lake: LA Galaxy eager to start West Semis on the right foot

By Adam Serrano

CARSON, Calif. -- Ahead of tonight's Western Conference Semifinal First Leg, I provide a few last minute links and matchups to watch as well as my prediction. 

*Todd Dunivant is hopeful that he'll be back on the field against LA and is likely to lineup against the emerging Kofi Opare.

*No two players will be more important for LA in their series against Real Salt Lake than Marcelo Sarvas and Juninho.  

*Can Gyasi Zardes blossom into the type of third offensive option that the Galaxy need?

*LAGalaxy.com's Larry Morgan's preview of LA vs. RSL.

*Lastly, my Three Points to the game

MATCHUPS TO WATCH:

MARCELO SARVAS AND JUNINHO vs. KYLE BECKERMAN AND JAVIER MORALES

The match and the series will be won in the center of the park between these four players. Their ability to clean up second balls, break up opposing attacks as well as spark counters will be vital. 

KOFI OPARE vs. ALVARO SABORIO 

A rookie against the veteran typically favors the more experienced player, but Opare has done well in matchups against the likes of Eddie Johnson and Steven Lenhart in recent weeks. 

GYASI ZARDES vs. TONY BELTRAN

Zardes' speed will be vital with dealing with the intelligent Beltran, who will also look to go forward early. 

Prediction

LA Galaxy 3 Real Salt Lake 1. Goals from Keane (2), Zardes, and Plata