The Los Angeles Galaxy defeated the Vancouver Whitecaps 2-1 in front of a crowd of 20,093 LA fans. Forwards Jose Villarreal and Gyassi Zardes both scored in the first and second half respectively.
LA played without their all-star attacking line as Landon Donovan was fulfilling his US International duties in the Gold Cup tournament and Robbie Keane and Robbie Rogers missed the games with hip and hamstring injuries, respectively.
Marcelo started things early with a shot on goal within the first minute of the match just outside the goalkeeper’s box, but it would be safely caught by Vancouver’s goalkeeper Brad Knighton.
In the sixth minute, Whitecaps’s defender Brad Rusin provided a goal line clearance from a header off of hector Jimenez that was bound for goal, but Vancouver defender had other plans for the ball.
The Galaxy continued to pour on the gasoline to the fire as another shot from Hector Jimenez was aimed on goal and over the keeper, but the crossbar helped the visiting team, keeping the game level at nil-nil.
Despite multiple attempts from the Galaxy, it would be the Whitecaps who broke open the score line in the 19th minute. Vancouver’s Lee Young-Pyo provided a long ball across the field that took a fancy touch by Rusell Teibert and Camilo Da Silva Sanvezzo was left one-on-one with LA’s Carlo Cudicini who could do nothing about the perfectly placed shot into the back of the net. Whitecaps led 1-0.
Things took a dramatic turn in the 30th minute. A set piece from about 35 yards away was taken by Juniho headed down by Omar Gonzalez and put into the back of the net by Jose Villarreal, but the sideline official flag went up and the goal was discounted. Referee Chris Penso went to investigate the matter further with his sideline ref, and then reversed his decision, awarding LA their first goal. That is something you just don’t see often.
The Galaxy took the lead in the 57th minute with a spectacular piece of play from Forward Gyassi Zardes. A long ball was chased by Zardes just before the end line and he flicks the ball passed his defender and one-times it into the back on the net to give the Galaxy the 2-1 lead. It was a type of ball that usually doesn’t lead to a shot on goal unless there is another player running into the box, but Zardes’ killer instinct paid off in this occasion.
Former Chivas USA midfielder Laurent Courtois made his Galaxy debut in the 86th minute to get his feet wert and hold the ball until the end of the match.
The final whistle blew and the score stayed 2-1 in favor for the Galaxy. The Galaxy will treck to Colorado to face the Rapids for the first time since signing Pablo Mastroeni from them earlier in the season. The match will take place on Saturday, July 27.
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