Three Points: LA Galaxy defeat the Vancouver Whitecaps, 2-0

LA Galaxy Insider Adam Serrano provides his analysis of the Galaxy’s 2-0 win over the Whitecaps

CARSON, Calif. – LA Galaxy Insider Adam Serrano provides his Three Points to the Galaxy’s 2-0 victory over Vancouver Whitecaps FC. Landon Donovan and Marcelo Sarvas scored in the victory while Robbie Keane added two assists on the evening.

THE EARLY GOALS FINALLY COME FOR THE GALAXY

After conceding the first goal in their last four games, the LA Galaxy had been eager for a strong start and they got it at long last in their 2-0 victory over Vancouver Whitecaps FC.

It took just four minutes for the Galaxy to get their goal as Robbie Keane launched a cross into the penalty area that found a streaking Landon Donovan who knocked the ball into the back of the net for his sixth goal of the season. Keane notched his second assist of the evening in the 32nd minute in somewhat unintentional fashion when he mishit a shot inside the penalty area that fell perfectly for Marcelo Sarvas who hammered it in from close range.

Just how important is scoring the first goal for the Galaxy this season? To date, the club holds a perfect 9-0-3 record when tallying the first goal in 2014.

DEFENSE HOLDS IN THE SECOND HALF TO KEEP SHUTOUT

There were no dramatics in the second half for the LA Galaxy as their defense held on for their sixth shutout of the season.

Up two goals at the break, the Galaxy continued to maintain possession, which limited opportunities for Vancouver to find their fleet-footed attacking tandem of Darren Mattocks and Kekuta Manneh. But when the Galaxy did concede possession, LA pressured the Whitecaps across the field, preventing them from establishing any rhythm going forward.

Throughout the second half, chances for the visitors were few and far between as Galaxy goalkeeper Jaime Penedo was only called into action three times in the final 45 minutes. His finest stop of the evening came in the 81st minute when he made a quick reaction save of a Mattocks attempt from close range to seal the shutout.

GALAXY WIN HELPS LA ESTABLISH DISTANCE BETWEEN THE PLAYOFF TEAMS

The LA Galaxy are not assured of a postseason place just yet, but Saturday’s win helped the club build a cushion between themselves and the bottom half of the Western Conference.

With their victory over Vancouver, the Galaxy find themselves in fourth place in the West with a four point gap between them and Whitecaps FC who hold the fifth and final playoff spot. That four point cushion comes in handy considering that the Galaxy have played one fewer game than the Whitecaps and FC Dallas as well as two fewer games than Seattle Sounders FC and Real Salt Lake.

Gaps like his make LA’s remaining weekday clashes that more vital as three points against DC United next week could help LA solidify their MLS Supporters’ Shield prospects.  

Adam Serrano is the LA Galaxy Insider. Read his blog at LAGalaxy.com/Insider and contact him at LAGalaxyInsider@Gmail.com.