There's no feeling better than scoring a goal in the playoffs.
Ahead of the LA Galaxy's Western Conference Championship contest against Seattle Sounders FC, I joined Galaxy TV to look at the top five playoff goals in club history.
Check it out the video above and if you disagree with any of my selections, leave a comment below.
Colorado Rapids Goalkeeper Joe Nasco earns fastest red card in MLS history in 6-0 loss to the LA Galaxy
CARSON, Calif. -- It's safe to say that Colorado Rapids goalkeeper Joe Nasco had one of the worst nights of his career, and he did it all without playing a single minute.
Just 34 seconds into the game, Alan Gordon skirted past Nasco during a scramble in front of goal, but before he could get a shot off at an empty net, Nasco yanked down the forward. Despite the extremely early juncture of the game, referee Baldomero Toledo pointed to the spot and handed out a red card for Nasco which was the quickest red card in league history.
Gyasi [Zardes] and [Alan] Gordon made great runs across the box and Todd [Dunivant] put in a great cross in front of the goal and when you do that, good things happen," said Landon Donovan. "Gordon did a good job to get his feet on it and was going to score and got pulled down, so that’s part of the game and it’s unfortunate for them."
Prior to Nasco's foible, the previous holder of the dubious distinction was former New York Red Bulls defender Carlos Johnson, who was sent off in the second minute of a match with the then-Kansas City Wizards back on April 23, 2009.
Although Nasco will likely have to carry the distinction for some time, he got little sympathy from the home side.
"If the goalkeeper doesn’t do that, then they don’t get the red card," said defender Omar Gonzalez. "That’s the way the game is played, those are the rules. It’s tough that’s the way it went down, but that had to happen."
"I would be pretty shocked if he’s not called into the U.S. team soon," Landon Donovan on Gyasi Zardes' USMNT prospects
CARSON, Calif. -- The U.S. National Team buzz surrounding Gyasi Zardes is at a fever pitch and now the striker's LA Galaxy teammate Landon Donovan is getting into the conversation.
Zardes scored twice during the Galaxy's 6-0 rout of the Colorado Rapids on Friday night to continue his impressive streak of 17 goals in 18 games in all competitions this summer. With 14 goals in his sophomore season in MLS, Zardes now holds the highest single-season total for an MLS Homegrown Player breaking the record previous held New England Revolution's Diego Fagundez who scored 13 goals last year.
As Zardes continues to score, the national team chatter will continue to intensify, but to have the seal of approval from Donovan is likely to aid the striker's case for the USMNT.
"He deserves everything he has got; success is not an accident. People think you’re just born a certain way and everything either comes to you or doesn’t and it’s not true," said Donovan. "Last year, we saw the other side of that where he wasn’t quite there yet. He put in a lot of work last year and a lot of work this year and it’s starting to pay off. I would be pretty shocked if he’s not called into the U.S. [Men’s National] Team soon.”
Throughout Zardes' impressive performance against the Rapids, the 22-year-old displayed not only his trademark speed, but also a variety of tricks learned from players like Robbie Keane and Landon Donovan. Whether it was Keane’s ability make a dummy run and set up a chance for a teammate or Donovan-esque turn and shoot, Zardes showcased that he’s steadily adding tricks to his growing arsenal of offensive moves.
And as he displays some of their trademark moves on the field, Zardes credits the role that Keane and Donovan have played in his maturation.
“My teammates are helping me. All these guys are older than me and I’m just trying to learn as much as I can from them," Zardes said. “Landon is a phenomenal player and I’m just trying to learn as much as I can from him. As you can see in the recent games, he’s the one giving me all my assists and I’m just trying to build off that as much as I can from these guys because they’ve played professional soccer longer than I have.”
Does Zardes get a national team call for the match against Ecuador?
Share your thoughts below.
CARSON, Calif. - It was an emotional night at StubHub Center.
The LA Galaxy honored the memory of A.J. DeLaGarza's departed son Luca with a 6-0 victory over the Colorado Rapids. The largest victory for the club since 1996.
Relive the emotional night through the great photos of Mora Photography.
CARSON, Calif. -- LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena addressed the media after the club's 6-0 win over the Colorado Rapids.
(On the emotional game for the LA Galaxy...)
ARENA: "We think the world of AJ [DeLaGarza] and his family. It’s a difficult moment, so our thoughts are definitely with them. It was emotional. He’s a person that we all care about. He’s such a great person. Him and his wife. It’s awful difficult to be in that position. We feel his pain, and we will be as supportive as we can be for AJ and his family. Certainly, our thoughts were with him tonight. It’s certainly it was a game we wanted to win for him."
(On Baggio Husidic's performance...)
ARENA: Very good game. Baggio is a very good player. He’s played very well over the past couple of weeks. Those were big goals tonight.
(On the defensive injuries...)
ARENA: Our injuries this year have really been in the back. We are just hanging on with bodies right now. We are getting James ready, but it’s still a little early for him. We wish we would have been able to get him some Galaxy II games, but it’s past the deadline to get him on the roster. We are just going to have to work him in through training and hopefully some game time
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy are in mourning after the loss of A.J. DeLaGarza's newborn son and club president Chris Klein insists that the team will continue to support him and his family in their time of need.
Klein spoke to reporters ahead of the Galaxy's match with the Colorado Rapids on the ways in which the team was honoring Luca.
(On when A.J. will return to the field...)
KLEIN: It’s entirely up to him, kind of the speed with what he does. Bruce has been great with him and defers to him with whatever he’s comfortable doing.
(On how A.J. is doing...)
KLEIN: I don’t know that I could put myself in his shoes. And know what it is that he and Megan were going through and have been going through, not only last week but the last couple months. AJ is a very tough kid, but you can’t prepare yourself for going through something like this. All we could do is come around him as his extended family and support him as best as we could.
AJ was at training this week, through this has been a release for him to come and be around the guys. This week, we’ve had people talking to him consistently.
(On Rapids coach Pablo Mastroeni wearing the armband...)
KLEIN: It’s not only Pablo but to see the support from players, from teams in our sport and other sports to se the reaction and how other people set everything else aside and come to the support of one family. It’s been incredible. I don’t know that AJ has seen all of it, but even to sit and look at it all has been something pretty cool. Pablo is part of our family as well, and AJ is someone that everyone likes. To have that is pretty amazing.
(On if the match is an emotional one...)
KLEIN: It is. Anytime you have a teammate that’s going through something it’s emotional, but to have someone like AJ who has been a part of us for so long and to have this group that’s so close is something you can’t describe. The guys are going to be emotional. You saw last week and I think you’ll see it again tonight.
(On the plan to honor DeLaGarza with cheers at the 20 minute mark...)
KLEIN: whose idea I don’t know. It is cool. Things just started to come out. We don’t have the right words to say, but anything we can do that our supporters and fans can do to support AJ and his family.
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy will take the field against the Colorado Rapids with heavy hearts after the passing of A.J. DeLaGarza's newborn son Luca on Thursday.
The Galaxy will be holding a moment of silence pregame for Luca DeLaGarza while also wearing black Luca inscribed armbands during the match.
More on the game itself below.
NOTES AND LINKS:
*LA Galaxy forward Landon Donovan was named MLS Player of the Month for the month of August on Friday.
*Brian Perk is scheduled to travel to Sacramento with LA Galaxy II for their upcoming match against Sacramento Republic on Saturday meaning that goalkeeper Brian Rowe appears to be the safe bet to get the start against the Rapids.
*Alan Gordon told LA Galaxy Insider earlier this week that he's approaching full fitness, but is unlikely to be 90 minutes fit. With that in mind, Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena spoke to forward Chandler Hoffman earlier in the week stating that he'll be likely used off the bench in an effort to spell Gordon if he is unable to go the distance.
*LAGalaxy.com's Larry Morgan noted in his preview that Rowe is likely to start and reported that Stefan Ishizaki is nearing his return to the field after missing the last several matches with a lower body injury.
*In the latest "By The Numbers," we look at Gyasi Zardes' incredible summer that saw the forward score 15 goals in 17 games.
MATCHUPS TO WATCH:
GYASI ZARDES AND ALAN GORDON vs. COLORADO DEFENSE
Alan Gordon was once part of San Jose's "Bash Brothers," but could we bill his new partnership with Gyasi Zardes as "Thunder and Lightning?" With Zardes' speed balancing with Gordon's brawn, expect the pair to be a handful for the battered Colorado defense.
DESHORN BROWN vs. LEONARDO
The oft-maligned Leonardo got all that he could handle from the speedy Brown in the first half of the Galaxy's 4-3 win over Colorado last month, but the big Brazilian will need a much stronger performance -- like his second half showing -- if he's to prevent the Jamaican from terrorizing the Galaxy back four.
LA Galaxy 3 Colorado Rapids 1
*Goals by Zardes, Gordon and Sarvas.
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy will look to extend their winning streak to five games against the Colorado Rapids on Friday.
In the latest edition of LAGalaxy.com's By the Numbers, we look at the rise of Gyasi Zardes and his incredible summer.
As if traffic isn't even more difficult to navigate on a Friday afternoon, the StubHub Center have issued a traffic advisory ahead of Friday's clash with the Colorado Rapids.
"Due to surface street construction occurring around the StubHub Center, 190th Street will be reduced to one lane in-between Main Street and Avalon Blvd," the venue said in a release. "In order to avoid traffic please Exit the 110 South at Torrance Blvd or Del Amo Blvd. Should you use the 91 Freeway, please exit at Avalon Blvd."
Gutcheck moment in dramatic victory over Colorado Rapids may define LA Galaxy season says Todd Dunivant
COMMERCE CITY, Colo. – It was a true homecoming for Todd Dunivant on Wednesday when the LA Galaxy defeated the Colorado Rapids 4-3 in dramatic fashion.
Finally recovered after an abdominal tear that has sidelined him since the third game of the season, Dunivant returned to the Galaxy starting XI for the first time since April 6. In attendance to see the 32-year-old defender’s first start in months were nearly 90 members of the Colorado native’s family who were in town holding a family reunion.
What they saw, however, was less than positive –at least to start— as LA sputtered out of the gate conceding three goals in the opening 30 minutes of play to fall behind 3-1 at the half. During that slow start, Dunivant lacked sharpness as he was frequently targeted down the flank by Colorado.
“We didn’t come out strong enough. Who knows what it was? They got behind us too many times and they jumped on us,” Dunivant told LA Galaxy Insider. “We had our chances too, but we just weren’t ready.”
In the second half, the Galaxy appeared revitalized after a rousing halftime speech by head coach Bruce Arena. It didn’t take long for LA to pull level as goals from Omar Gonzalez and Alan Gordon tied up the score after just 68 minutes. In the 80th, Landon Donovan scored to seal the victory for the visitors.
For Dunivant who was lifted in favor of A.J. DeLaGarza just two minutes prior to Donovan’s game-winner, the win may come to define the Galaxy’s season.
“Sometimes these types of wins are more important than complete game performances because you need to dig deep and see what we’re made of,” said Dunivant, who claimed to be feeling no ill effects from his abdominal injury after the game. “We had a gut check moment at half time where a lot of words were said, but we were obviously able to come back.
“Playing in Colorado is always a tall task, but it was great to be back on the field and getting a win was fantastic for this team.”