Recap: LA at NY
HARRISON, N.J. – The Los Angeles Galaxy became just the second club in MLS to walk out of Red Bull Arena with a win as Edson Buddle's league-leading 13th goal proved the difference against the New York Red Bulls on Saturday in front of a sell-out crowd.
With manager Bruce Arena watching from a suite after spending two days in a New Jersey hospital, Buddle's 10th minute strike allowed the Galaxy to extend their lead in the Western Conference with an MLS-best 43 points.
"Massive win for us," said Galaxy captain Landon Donovan. "We’re back to the way we played in the beginning of the year. There’s been a lot of talk about NY in the last few weeks and we wanted to let people know who the best team in the league is."
After striking the crossbar in the 7th minute through a Chris Birchall drive, LA would not miss three minutes later.
Galaxy midfielder Juninho won the ball at midfield and played a through pass that split NY central defenders Tim Ream and Carlos Mendes. Buddle raced onto the ball and beat hard charging goalkeeper Bouna Coundoul to put the visitors up 1-0.
After Los Angeles took the early lead, New York would hold the majority of possession but seemed inept at breaking down the Galaxy backline. The Red Bulls did have a few chances in the first 45 minutes but they came exclusively off set pieces. In first half stoppage time, a Rafa Marquez free kick from the right side found forward Juan Pablo Angel in the box but the New York striker’s header slammed against the post.
The second half proved equally frustrating for the Red Bulls as the Los Angeles defense held tight and compact. Just a few minutes into the second half, Henry chased down an errant back pass to Donovan Ricketts in the Galaxy’s goal. Henry got to the ball first and tried to step around Ricketts but the Los Angeles keeper charged hard and cleared the ball before Henry could make his move.
The Red Bulls had the run of chances in the second half, with the best look coming in the 72nd minute. On a corner kick swung in by Joel Lindpere, Angel dove to perfectly head the effort, but Ricketts made the diving save. Ream challenged for the rebound but it was blocked off the line.
The Galaxy held tight throughout the second half, their back four conceding space but always clamping down within 30 yards of goal.
LA is now a perfect 13-0-0 when scoring the first goal during the 2010 campaign.