Three Points: LA Galaxy lock down three seed in the West after tying Seattle Sounders FC
CARSON, Calif. – LA Galaxy Insider Adam Serrano offers his Three Points to the team’s 1-1 draw with Seattle Sounders FC. With the draw, the Galaxy clinched the third seed in the Western Conference and will face Real Salt Lake in the Western Conference Semifinals. The Galaxy will host the first leg of the two-leg, aggregate goal series at StubHub Center on Sunday, November 3 at 6 p.m. and the match will air live on ESPN.
ROBBIE KEANE SAVES LA GALAXY AFTER SUSPECT CALL DENIES A GOAL
The wheels could have come off for the LA Galaxy after Omar Gonzalez’s apparent goal in the 42nd minute was not called, but once the second half began LA remained focused and eventually pulled back a goal through forward Robbie Keane.
Immediately after referee Mark Geiger and assistant referee Greg Barkey negated Gonzalez’s goal, the Galaxy were noticeably frustrated, but soon LA composed themselves as they searched for the equalizer. The Galaxy’s sustained pressure led to a goal in the 78th minute when Hector Jimenez found Keane, who fired a shot that bounced off the turf and into the back of the battle net.
The fact that it was Keane who provided the crucial tying goal is emblematic of the Irishman’s output this season as LA amassed a 12-4-7 record in games when he’s played. Now the Galaxy will need their captain to come through once again in the postseason as LA continue their quest for a third consecutive MLS Cup championship.
GALAXY KEEP THE SOUNDERS OFF THE BOARD LATE
Conceding late goals has been a major issue for the LA Galaxy this season, but in front of more than 66,000 screaming fans at CenturyLink Field in the most important 10 minutes of their season, the Galaxy defense held firm.
Following Robbie Keane’s equalizer in the 78th minute, the Galaxy appeared to be a far cry from the team that has conceded 18 goals in the last 15 minutes of matches. LA had their chances to pull away immediately following Keane’s goal, but once the match entered the four minutes of stoppage time, it was all Sounders. Despite winning a pair of corners, Seattle was unable to convert as both Seattle attempts were blocked and cleared away by Galaxy defenders.
Throughout the season, the Galaxy have stressed that they must show resilience in the closing stages and did just that to seal the draw and the third seed in the Western Conference. Whether the performance is in fact a turning point remains to be seen as the Galaxy are expected to get all that they can handle from their Western Conference Semifinal opponent, Real Salt Lake.
LA GALAXY TO FACE REAL SALT LAKE IN WESTERN CONFERENCE SEMIFINALS
The Galaxy are heading to the 2013 MLS Cup Playoffs as the third seed in the Western Conference after their 1-1 draw with Seattle Sounders FC on Sunday.
The draw earns the Galaxy a matchup with Real Salt Lake, who the Galaxy are 1-0-1 against in postseason games, with the lone draw being LA’s penalty kick defeat to Salt Lake in the 2009 MLS Cup. This season, the Galaxy are 2-1-0 against Salt Lake with LA outscoring the No. 2 seed 7-5. The first match will be on Sunday, November 3 at StubHub Center with the return leg being either Nov. 6 or Nov. 7 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah.
A few extra days rest will be vital for a Galaxy team that enters the postseason with a slew of injuries, but will have a few extra days to help the likes of Landon Donovan (Left Ankle Inflammation), Omar Gonzalez (Left Hip Strain) and Todd Dunivant (Right Knee Sprain), who remain on the mend.
Adam Serrano is the LA Galaxy Insider. Read his blog at LAGalaxy.com/Insider and contact him at LAGalaxyInsider@Gmail.com