Three Points: The LA Galaxy attack struggles in scoreless draw with Puerto Rico
BAYAMÓN, Puerto Rico— The Three Points to the LA Galaxy’s scoreless CONCACAF Champions League draw with the Puerto Rico Islanders…
OFFENSIVE STRUGGLES IN PUERTO RICO
From the opening whistle, the LA Galaxy’s defense struggled to get going against a resolute Puerto Rico Islanders side.
The side that tallied four goals on August 29th was unable to have the same impact in Bayamón as the Islanders high pressure defense caused problems for LA going forward. To correct these issues, head coach Bruce Arena opted to bring in a trio of first team players in Landon Donovan, Marcelo Sarvas and Juninho to breathe life into LA’s defense, but the moves were for naught.
As the minutes ticked down in the second half, the Galaxy created several chances opportunities—including a pair of chances from Juninho late— but were unable to find the go-ahead goal.
PERK SHINES IN GOAL FOR THE GALAXY
The LA Galaxy attack may have sputtered, but goalkeeper Brian Perk enjoyed a fantastic performance in the scoreless draw.
Josh Saunders’ understudy notched seven saves on the night as he repeatedly repelled a stingy Islanders attack. Perk’s positioning was superb throughout the night as he came up big during Puerto Rico’s three corner kicks, but his finest moments came late as he made a pair of saves in the game’s final ten minutes to keep the game scoreless.
Due to Perk’s heroics, the Galaxy remain in contention for the top spot in Group 5 heading into the final group match on October 25th against Isidro Metapán in El Salvador. STANDINGS
ISLANDERS SHOW MAJOR URGENCY; ELIMINATED FROM CCL
The Puerto Rico Islanders may have lost 4-0 during the first match between the two teams at The Home Depot Center in August, but the NASL side was worlds better on Wednesday.
Throughout the match, the Islanders were by far a more dangerous side as they had more than double the scoring chances than their August thumping in the first half alone. With the additions of David Foley and Jay Needham, who both missed the first match, Puerto Rico was by far a more dynamic side and repeatedly put the Galaxy defense under pressure.
In the end, it was finishing that eluded the Islanders, who despite holding considerable possession in the final third were unable to break the deadlock due to the goalkeeping of Perk. With the result, the Islanders are officially eliminated from CCL competition.
Adam Serrano is the LA Galaxy Insider. Read his blog at LAGalaxy.com/Insider and contact him at LAGalaxyInsider@Gmail.com