Carson City, California- The StubHub! Center, September 18, 2013 (Photos: Samuel Coronado)
The Galaxy began an important four game stretch Wednesday against the Salvadorian team, Isidro Metapan. The Galaxy was then going to play the Seattle Sounders at home on Saturday, travel to San Jose to play midweek against Cartagines and finally travel to play the Portland Timbers. They were going be playing not only for their CONCACAF Champions League berth into the next stage of the competition but also for a playoff berth in the MLS. They knew they had to win these next four games if they wanted to keep their hopes alive of winning the MLS cup for a third time in a row and to win the COCACAF Champions League.
Since the Galaxy was going to have to play four games in the span of two weeks, they decided to field a “B” team against Metapan. The only player that had started plenty of the MLS regular season games was Jose Villarreal. The inexperience and the lack of minutes showed up early and often for the Galaxy. They had many errant passes and turnovers in dangerous spots. The backline would also lose track of their man and let them get behind their backs. Luckily for the Galaxy, Metapan was very imprecise when it came to the final touch. They had a few scoring opportunities but they were either off the mark or Brian Rowe, the Galaxy goalkeeper, made the save.
The Galaxy was able to capitalize in their first shot on goal. The shot came in the sixth minute of the game. Jose Villarreal had the ball inside the box. He passed the ball to Laurent Courtois. Courtois received the ball and shot towards goal. The ball just made it inside the far post and went into the net. Courtois’ goal gave the LA Galaxy a one-nil lead. In the first half, both teams had scoring opportunities but only the Galaxy was able to make one count.
The second half was sloppier than the first half. Both teams would lose the ball because of errant passes and both teams couldn’t convert any scoring opportunities they were able to create. The game ended in a one-nil victory for the LA Galaxy. According to the Galaxy’s game day captain, Pablo Mastroeni, even though it was a sloppy win, it was still a win. That is a very true statement that Mastroeni gave because the Galaxy needed to win this game to keep their fate in their hands. All they have to do is go to San Jose, Costa Rica and so they can qualify for the next step of the CONCACAF Champions League.
The LA Galaxy will stay home and play the Seattle Sounders on September 21.