Off the field, the LA Galaxy and Chivas USA have a budding rivalry. Fans from both sides showed up to Thursday’s SuperClásico and once again brought an electric atmosphere to Home Depot Center.
But on the field, the Galaxy and Chivas once again went through the motions. The Galaxy scored early, Chivas had no answer and LA put the game away at the end.
For the 11th time in 19 regular-season meetings, the Galaxy beat Chivas USA. The latest triumph was a 2-0 score line, with Edson Buddle accounting for both goals.
At the start, it was like old times for the Galaxy. Chivas actually had the better of play for the first six minutes or so as the club’s new-look lineup strung some passes together and maintained possession. But in the first real build-up for the Galaxy, they scored.
Off a quick re-start from the centerline, Landon Donovan found Sean Franklin on the right flank. Franklin had time and picked up Edson Buddle inside the penalty area. Buddle easily headed home the cross as Chivas’ Michael Umaña failed to get a body on Buddle.
Chivas and the Galaxy spent much of the remaining half engaging in physical play and trash talking. Umaña picked up a yellow card after a hard foul on Buddle in the 16th minute while Chris Birchall flattened Justin Braun from behind in the 25th minute. Moments later, Sacha Kljestan ran into Buddle and the two players exchanged words. Smiling, Buddle’s mouth kept moving and eventually saw yellow as well.
In the second half, Chivas took out Osael Romero and replaced him with Jesús Padilla. The former Guadalajara player was active and caused some problems for Donovan Ricketts. Padilla tested Ricketts from long range and got the ball past him but missed narrowly missed the post.
As the game wore on, the Galaxy looked disinterested in building an attack and dropped numbers behind the ball as Chivas maintained possession for large stretches of time but were feeble in the final third. Padilla had Chivas’ best chance when he knifed through the Galaxy’s defense and found himself in front of the goal with Ricketts behind him. However, Padilla lost his footing and could not get a touch on the ball. Maicon Santos sent his shot well high of an empty net but was in an offside position, and his failed chance would not have counted anyway.
Donovan and Buddle combined for one late goal. Donovan took control of the ball on the left side of the field, walked into the box and slipped a ball to Buddle, who ripped a shot into the back of the net.
Chivas failed to threaten the Galaxy’s goal afterward as the Galaxy closed out their latest victory over their rivals.
CHV -- Michael Umana (caution; Tactical Foul) 19
LA -- Chris Birchall (caution; Reckless Tackle) 25
LA -- Edson Buddle (caution; Unsporting Behavior) 27
LA -- A.J. DeLaGarza (caution; Reckless Foul) 88
LA -- Michael Stephens (caution; Handball) 92+
Referee: Ricardo Salazar
Referee's Assistants: Corey Rockwell; Peter Manikowski
4th Official: Kevin Stott
Home Depot Center, Carson, Calif.