LA Galaxy manhandles Chivas USA to win 5-0

Oct 7, 2013

Carson City, California- The StubHub! Center, October 6, 2013 (Photos: Samuel Coronado)

This Sunday, LA Galaxy and Chivas USA were going to play the final installment of the SuperClassico this season. They tied the first game one-one and the Galaxy was able to win the second game in the slightest of margins, one-nil. Many things had happen since their last game. Chivas USA was now officially eliminated from the playoffs. Galaxy was still in the playoffs but at the start of the game was in fifth place. It was a must-win game for both teams but for different reason. Chivas USA needed this win to salvage another season of disappointment. They knew that if they could beat their hometown rivals, it would be a big boost from this young team next season. Galaxy needed to win to keep their playoff hopes alive. At the beginning of the game, they were just one point ahead of the sixth place San Jose Earthquake and San Jose had been playing well recently. The Galaxy had to win the remaining games to make sure they made it into the playoffs.

The Galaxy almost scored the first goal of the game from the get-go. Gyasi Zardes had the ball on the left flank. He ran towards the touch line and right before he crossed the line he crossed the ball towards the middle of the box. Robbie Keane was running down the middle of the box and he slid to try to put the ball into the net but he touch was off course and the ball missed wide right. Then in the 5th minute of the game, Galaxy was able to open up the scoreboard. Gyasi had the ball on the left flank again as he was getting closer to the box. He crossed the ball to the other side of the box were Landon Donovan was at. He brought down the ball but Dan Kennedy came out to meet him and close down any shooting angel that Donovan had. Instead of shooting, Donovan passed the ball back towards the middle of the box where all Keane had to do was shoot the ball towards goal. This goal gave the Galaxy a one-nil lead.
The Galaxy was able to increase their lead in the 23rd minute of the game. Just like their previous two dangerous opportunities the play happened on the left flank. Zardes had the ball on the flank and did the same thing; he cut and ran towards the touch line. He then crossed the ball low and to the far post right where Donovan was making his run. All Donovan had to do was guide the ball towards the back of the net with his foot and he did that expertly. This goal gave the Galaxy a commanding two-nil lead.

Galaxy extended their lead even more in the 26th minute of the game. Zardes had the ball on the left flank again. He cut in towards the top of the box and passed the ball to a wide open Keane. Keane received the ball and tried shooting at goal but a Chivas USA defender was able to get in front of the shot and block the ball. The rebound landed on Zardes’ feet, he turned, and shot towards goal. He was able to beat Kennedy and score the third goal for Galaxy. The Galaxy now led three-nil.

The Galaxy was not done when it came to scoring in the first half. Donovan had the ball on his side of the pitch. He passed the ball to Keane who was in the middle of the field. Keane one-timed it to Pablo Mastroeni. He stopped the ball with his chest and volleyed the pass to a running Donovan towards goal. Donovan beat his defender and smartly chipped it over Kennedy to score his second goal of the game. With that goal, Donovan was able to match Jeff Cunningham’s all time record for goals scored in the MLS with 134 goals.

The second half didn’t have as much fire power as the first half. It would be very difficult for the Galaxy to match what they did in the first half. The Galaxy weren’t as dangerous in the second half but they weren’t attacking with the same aggressive mindset like they did in the first half. They were able to score another goal. This goal came in the 90th minute of the game. Laurent Courtois had the ball. He saw that Keane was making his run towards the box. Courtois passed the ball to Keane and Keane controlled the ball with his chest. He took a few steps, turned and shot on goal. He was able to score Galaxy’s fifth goal of the game and his second. The referee whistled for the end of the game one minute later and the Galaxy were able to win easily.

Galaxy stays home to play Montreal Impact on October 16.

Chivas USA travel to Utah to play Real Salt Lake.

Read More

Team’s mistake causes Chivas USA from playing the spoiler role against San Jose

Sep 30, 2013

Carson City, California- The StubHub! Center, September 29, 2013 (Photos: Samuel Coronado)

Chivas USA knew that they were out of contention for the playoffs. They had been eliminated for a few weeks now but now they were playing a new role. They were the dreaded spoiler team in the Western Conference. Realistically all the teams in the West minus Chivas USA still had a chance of making the playoffs. San Jose needed to win this game to get within one point of fourth place and keep their playoff hopes alive. Chivas USA on the other hand, wanted to make their presence known in the West. They didn’t want to be the push-over team but show that their game was increasing. The best way to show this was by beating teams still fighting for a playoff spot and making their opponents final weeks a lot harder.

In the first half neither team did anything. They couldn’t crack each other’s defense and had to pass the ball from side to side looking to create some sort of opening to attack. The most action came in the 39th minute when San Jose’s player Steven Lenhart and Chivas USA’s Steve Purdy seemed to hit each other while jumping for a ball. In the replay it seemed like Lenhart elbowed Purdy in the face. Purdy got up from the hit but looked disorientated like if he had a concussion. He was subbed out immediately for Jaime Frias.

The second half almost started off with a bang. It seemed like San Jose was able to open up the scoreboard just one minute into the second half. They were able to earn a corner kick after a mistake by Carlos Borja. Shea Salinas was the one who was in charge of executing the corner kick. He whipped the ball into the middle of the box and Lenhart was able to head the ball in. The referee didn’t even allow San Jose to celebrate because he signaled an infraction immediately nullifying the first goal of the match.

After that nullified goal it seemed to spark something in Chivas USA because they started to attack more. In the 52nd minute of the game, Matthew Fondy was substituted into the game and immediately made an impact. He almost scored a goal on his first touch but he wasn’t able to get much on his header. Then Chivas USA got a break in the in the 81st minute when Lenhart received a second yellow and consequently a red card. He recklessly jumped into Dan Kennedy as Kennedy was going up for the ball.

Even though Chivas USA went a man up, they couldn’t score a goal. They were the ones who gave up a goal in the 87th minute. The goal came from a counter attack. Cordell Cato brought the ball out from his own goal. He jogged by himself all the way to the middle of the field before one Chivas USA defender got to him. He passed the ball to Alan Gordon who turned around and went towards goal. He ran to the top of the box and again no Chivas USA defender pressured him so he was able to take a shot on goal. His shot was blocked by Kennedy but Kennedy let the rebound go. No Chivas USA defender went after the rebound so all Chris Wondolowski had to do was tap it over Kennedy and score the only goal of the match. San Jose was able to pull off the win and go home with the much needed three points. In Kennedy’s defense, the ball seemed to bounce right in front of him so he had to make sure the ball didn’t get past him but no defender went to make it harder for Wondolowski to score.

After the match, Jose Luis “El Guero” Real said that it wasn’t just Kennedy’s mistake that caused the goal. He said it was the entire team’s mistake and he is right. Kennedy did leave a costly rebound right in front of the net which is a huge “no-no” for any goalkeeper, but no one blocked Wondolowski from making his run to the ball. No one blocked Cato from running by himself to the middle of the field. No one made Gordon think twice about his shot or make him take another step. Chivas USA played well against San Jose and for most of the second half had San Jose on the ropes but they couldn’t finish the game. It’s a running theme with Chivas USA this year. They don’t get outplayed at all; they just make a costly mistake late in a game and lose the game.

Chivas USA’s next game is away at the StubHub! Center against L.A. Galaxy in the final edition of the SuperClassico on Sunday October 6th.

Read More

Galaxy gives up another set piece goal but able to tie the game

Sep 21, 2013

Carson City, California- The StubHub! Center, September 21, 2013 (Photos: Samuel Coronado)

Every time the Los Angeles Galaxy and the Seattle Sounders faceoff, it is an exciting game. These two teams have begun growing a rivalry in the recent years especially since they’ve also had to face off many times in the playoffs. It’s safe to say these two teams don’t like each other. This time around, this game had a lot riding on it. Seattle was leading the Western Conference and wanted to increase their lead. Galaxy wanted to go up in the standings and have a more favorable playoff experience. This game also a different element; for the first time ever, Landon Donovan was going to go against Clint Dempsey in a MLS match. Many people circled this game in their calendar ever since Dempsey joined the Seattle Sounders. Sadly, neither Donovan nor Dempsey played this game because of injury.

The game began with both teams studying each other. Neither team wanted to throw to many men forward into their attack because both teams were very dangerous when it came to the counter-attack. Most of the game was being played in the midfield because each team’s attack would end before they could get a quality look or even shot on goal. The first real dangerous shot on goal came in the 19th minute of the game. Robbie Keane had the ball at top of the box and was trying to create his own shot but he couldn’t create a shooting window. He instead tried passing the ball towards Gyasi Zardas but he didn’t put enough power into his pass. Luckily for Galaxy, DeAndre Yedlin missed the ball as he tried clearing it and landed on Zardes’ feet. He turned towards goal and tried shooting it to the top left corner of the goal but Seattle’s goalkeeper, Michael Gspurning, was able to block the ball.

Seattle was able to open up the scoreboard on their first corner kick of the game. Mauro Rosales was the one in charge of taking the corner. He whipped it into the middle of the box straight towards a jumping Eddie Johnson. Omar Gonzalez was the one that was marking Johnson but right was Johnson was making his run, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado not only set a pick on Gonzalez but also grabbed on to him to not let hom move. This gave Johnson enough space to make his way towards the direction of the ball by himself. All he had to do was make sure he hit the ball squarely with his head and the ball would shoot straight towards goal and that’s exactly what happened. Jamie Penedo couldn’t do anything to try to save the shot. Johnson gave Seattle a one-nil lead in the 25th minute of the game.

The Galaxy tried responding right away to try to even the score but they couldn’t find the back of the net. It seemed like Seattle was going to go into the locker rooms at half time with all the momentum since they were leading on the road. Then in the final minutes of the half, Galaxy was able to tie the game in a superb fashion. The Galaxy was able to earn a free kick thanks to Jose Villarreal making his defender drop him. Juninho was the one in charge of taking the free kick. He set up and kicked the ball on goal. His shot was able to curl over the wall and sneaked in between Gspurning outstretched arm and bottom left corner of the pole. The referee whistled the half over and the Galaxy was able to turn the momentum to their side. The half ended tied one-one.

The Galaxy came out in the second half trying to take the lead but it seemed like they had some heavy legs. They couldn’t do the same runs and were giving up more turnovers than they did in the first half. They were able to score another goal but it was nullified because of a foul. The only problem with that nullification of the goal was that the pick that set Gonzalez free was almost an exact replica of the pick that set Johnson free in Seattle’s lone goal. The Galaxy also had some chances in the final minutes of the game to score but they just couldn’t find that final touch to make the ball go into the net.

After the game, Galaxy’s head coach, Bruce Arena said that he thought that the team played well. The only thing missing was the team’s ability of finishing in the final third. When he was asked about the officiating, he thought that it was very inconsistent stating that if their goal was nullified, then Seattle’s goal should have been nullified first.

The Galaxy travel to Costa Rica to face off against CS Cartegines on September 25 then travel to Portland to face the Timbers on September 29.


Read More

Courtois gives the Galaxy the win in a sloppy game

Sep 18, 2013

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.

Read More

Chivas USA plays with better quality but end up with a tie

Sep 14, 2013

Carson City, California- The StubHub! Center, September 14, 2013 (Photos: Samuel Coronado)

Chivas USA started this week with a slim chance of making the MLS playoffs. They knew they needed help from other teams but they also knew that they had to do their part also. They had to win all the games left in their schedule. Luckily for Chivas USA, many of their games left were against teams in the Western Conference. If they didn’t make the playoffs, they also could play another role many teams cherish when they know they won’t make the playoffs, the role of the spoilers. They could cause serious damage in the West because they were still playing many teams fighting for a better table position. One of those teams was the Portland Timbers. At the start of this week, Portland was tie for fourth with Colorado and FC Dallas was only two points behind Portland. They needed to come to the StubHub! Center and win this game.

The game started off well for Chivas USA. They had more of the possession and were looking to try to build up their attack. Chivas USA knew that if they tried playing this game up and down; they would be playing into Portland’s strength. Portland almost gave Chivas USA a goal in the form of a mental error. One of the Chivas USA players had the ball and tried to pass it to Erick “El Cubo” Torres but the pass was too far. Donovan Ricketts, the Portland Timber goalkeeper, went to try to kick it out but it went through his legs. If the pass had more power, it would have been a goal. Then a couple minutes later, Portland gave up a costly turnover to Carlos Alvarez. He shot towards goal but Ricketts came up big and made the save.

Then in the 23rd minute, Chivas USA was able to open up the scoreboard. Edgar “El Chore” Mejia had the ball close to the middle of the field. He saw a running Carlos Borja on the left flank and passed it to him. Borja received the ball and took a couple of steps towards the outside of the box. He then crossed it to the top of the box where Bryan de la Fuente was able to jump and beat three Portland defenders to the ball. He headed the ball towards the top right corner and the ball sneaked in. Ricketts tried making the save but the ball was perfectly located that he couldn’t do anything. Chivas USA took the lead and held the one-nil lead into the half.

The second half didn’t start the way Chivas USA had envisioned. Just five minutes into the half, Portland Timbers were able to equalize the game. Diego Valeri was able to score after Jose Valencia gave him a perfect pass inside the box. Valeri had just been substituted in to the game at the beginning of the second half and he made his presence felt immediately. The game was now tied, one-one.

In the 68th minute of the game, Chivas USA was about to regain the lead. “El Cubo” went on a breakaway and had a one on one with Ricketts. It seemed like he wanted to chip the ball over Ricketts and he did. The only problem was the Ricketts dived to try to stop “El Cubo” from chipping the ball but instead of blocking the ball, he blocked “El Cubo’s” run. Rickets kicked “El Cubo” on his leg and that caused him to fall inside the box but the referee awarded the corner kick instead of the penalty kick. The game remained one-one.

According to the Chivas USA manager, Jose Luis “El Guerro” Real, Chivas USA showed effort and quality. He said that Chivas USA has always shown effort. They never give up in any game and play hard throughout the 90 minutes but in this game, Chivas USA showed they can also play with quality. They could play better teams and show that they weren’t outclassed.

Chivas USA travel to Houston to play the Houston Dynamo on September 21.

Read More

“El Cubo” strikes again

Sep 8, 2013

Carson City, California- The StubHub! Center, September 8, 2013 (Photos: Victor Posadas)

Chivas USA was going to play a very important game against D.C. United this weekend at the StubHub! Center. There wasn’t any playoff implication or Supporters Shield importance. This game was for pride. These two teams are the worst teams in their respected conference: the Western Conference for Chivas USA and the Eastern Conference for D.C. United. D.C. United is the worst team in the league and Chivas USA is the third worst team in the league and no team wants to end up being the worst in the league. That’s why this game was so important. This game could end up being the difference between being last or just finishing towards the last spots in the league standings.

The game began like someone would expect a game between two of the worst teams in the league to start, with many miscommunications. Neither team could create any real offense because they were so imprecise in their passing. The clearest opportunity in the entire first half was created because of an error caused by Bocanegra. Nick DeLeon had the ball on the right flank. He then crossed the ball to the middle of the box where Bocanegra and Conor Doyle were at. Bocanegra tried clearing it but missed the ball entirely and that mistake allowed Doyle to get a foot to the ball. The shot went straight towards the net but Dan Kennedy was able to make a great reaction save and block the shot. The first half ended with a nil-nil draw.

Chivas USA played a lot better in the second half. They were able to create more opportunities in their attack because their precision in their passing increased. They were almost going to score at the beginning of the second half but the D.C. defenders were able to get in front of the shots. Chivas USA was finally able to break through the nil-nil deadlock in the 51st minute of the game. Edgar “El Chore” Mejia had the ball on the right flank. He cut in towards the middle of the field and crossed the ball towards the top of the box towards Bobby Burling. Burling jumped to head it but missed it and it hit a D.C. defender and rebounded back in towards the box. “El Cubo” was able to react before anyone and shot on goal. Bill Hamid wasn’t able to block the shot and “El Cubo” scored the first goal of the game.
Chivas USA was able to hold on to the lead and win the game one-nil. Even though they started the game very flat, they were able to come back after halftime and play well enough to win a very close game. After the game, Jose “El Guerro” Real, Chivas USA’s D.T., accredited Chivas USA’s better play to the formation change he did after the 20th minute of the game. He subbed in Erick Avila for Julio Morales which gave the midfield more help. By bringing in Avila, Chivas USA was not only able to stop D.C. United’s attack but were also able to control the ball more.

Chivas USA stays home to play the Portland Timbers on September 14.

Read More

Galaxy loses an important game, can’t gain ground in the Western Conference

Sep 7, 2013

Carson City, California- The StubHub! Center, September 7, 2013 (Photos: Samuel Coronado)

The season was winding down to its last two months of regular season play. The LA Galaxy had shaken off early and even mid-season woes to be right in the thick of things on top of the Western Conference standings. Not only were they close to being the number one seed in the West; the Galaxy was also close of being the number one seed overall and win the Supporter’s Shield. The game against the Colorado Rapids this week was vital to keep these two dreams alive. Colorado was close behind Galaxy in the standings and they were ready to make a surge forward. The Galaxy on the other hand was in the midst of making the surge winning their last couple of games. This game against Colorado was going to be a lot more difficult because the Galaxy didn’t have four of their starting players due to international call-ups. Jose Villarreal, Jack McBean, Kofi Opare, and Brian Rowe were given the task to start in the place of their absent players.

The lack of their four players was noticeable in the first half. They didn’t make any glaring errors that cost the Galaxy any goals but there was a lack of rhythm to their game. Colorado seemed to dominate position of the ball but Galaxy’s backline wasn’t letting anything get to Rowe. On the offensive end, Galaxy couldn’t create anything dangerous. Their closest attempt on goal came from a free kick that Juninho took. The shoot was too high to really cause any real danger. Even with the lack of offensive creativity, the Galaxy was able to gain more possession of the ball as the game wore on. The first half ended with a nil-nil draw.

The Galaxy started the second much more aggressive than they did the first half. They were almost able to score a goal but the Rapids’ goalkeeper, Clinton Irwin, was able to react fast enough to stop McBean’s shot. Then in the 60th minute of the game, Todd Dunivant, had a good look at goal but his shot went high. Galaxy’s attack seemed to wane a little so Galaxy subbed in Charlie Rugg and Colin Clark. That instantly put helped Galaxy’s attack but they couldn’t convert any of their opportunities. They almost had a chance on a run Rugg did but the referee called a foul that was non-existent. Immediately after that play the Rapids were able to score the first goal of the game. Irwin took the free kick. He kicked the ball to the middle of the field were Leonardo and Edson Buddle jumped up to head the ball. Before the ball got there, Buddle elbowed Leonardo in the face and because of this, Buddle was able to win the header and the ball bounced to Dunivant. He tried controlling the ball instead of clearing it. This allowed Vicente Sanchez enough time to get to Dunivant and disposes him of the ball. He ran towards goal but Kofi was able to get in his way and stop his run. He turned around and almost lost the ball as Juninho tried poking it away but he kept position of the ball and passed it to Buddle. Buddle quickly shot towards goal and the ball went straight into the top left corner. All Rowe could do was watch the ball go into the net. Colorado was winning the game one-nil.

LA tried scoring in the remaining 15 minutes but Irwin made some easy saves to preserve Colorado’s win. The young players played well, they just couldn’t find the back of the net. Rowe commanded his box well and even though he allowed one goal, it was’t his fault. Villarreal and McBean played well up top but they just couldn’t find the back of the net. Kofi also played well in the backline and helped stop many Colorado attacks. With this win, Colorado has 42 points and is now in fourth place in the Western Conference Standings. Galaxy stays in third with 43 points but their hopes of winning the Supporters Shield grew a lot fainter with this lose.

The Galaxy travels to Washington, D.C to face D.C. United on September 14.

Read More

Robbie Keane and Landon Donovan combine for three goals in Galaxy win

Sep 1, 2013

Carson City, California- The StubHub! Center, August 31, 2013 (Photos: Victor Posadas)

The second edition of this year’s California Classico as finally played at the StubHub! Center. In the last edition the San Jose Earthquake were able to come from behind and beat the Los Angeles Galaxy four-three at San Jose. This time up, Galaxy knew that they needed the three points to further advance their position in the Western Conference Standings.

The game began like most rivalry games begin, with both teams testing and studying each other. Neither of the teams seemed to want to send to many men into the attack. The first real scoring opportunity came early in the first half. San Jose earned a corner kick. Marvin Chavez crossed it to the far post were Chris Wondolowski tried kicking it in but Galaxy’s new star goalkeeper, Jaime Penedo, was there ready to make the save. Galaxy responded with a shot from Robbie Keane but the shot was pushed wide left. As the minutes passed on, both teams seemed to gain confidence and bring up more men into the attack.

Then in the 26th minute of play, Galaxy was able to open up the scoreboard with a goal. San Jose was able to warn a free kick a couple of yards outside the box. They crossed it into the middle of the box but Omar Gonzalez was able to rise up higher than anyone and head the ball away to Marcelo Sarvas. Sarvas ran up with the ball and then passed it Keane. Keane touched the ball and he saw Landon Donovan make his run down the middle of the field. Keane flicked the ball over a San Jose defender towards Donovan. Donovan caught up to the ball took a few steps towards the edge of the box and shot on goal. Jon Busch, the Earthquake goalkeeper, dove to try to save the shot but he couldn’t do anything. The Los Angeles Galaxy was winning the California Classico one-nil.

Los Angeles kept attacking from all sides. They would look to cross the ball into the box from the flanks and if that didn’t work, they would try going down the middle and look for a shot. This aggressive nature from LA allowed them to earn a penalty kick in the 42nd minute of play. Keane had the ball on the right flank. He then passed the ball to Donovan who was on top of the box. Donovan quickly passed it to Gyasi Zardes who was on the left flank. He received the ball inside the box. Zardes tried cutting towards the middle of the box but Earthquake defender, Steven Beitashour, slid to try to get the ball. He missed Zardes’ lead leg but clipped his trail leg and Zardes fell inside the box. The referee awarded Galaxy a penalty kick without any hesitation. Keane stepped up to take the penalty. He shot it low and to his left but it wasn’t a good shot. Luckily for him, the ball seemed to bounce in front of Busch and he couldn’t make the save even though he guessed the direction correctly. The Galaxy was leading two-nil at the end of the first half.

The second half began just as the first one had ended, with LA being the better of the two teams. They were getting close of scoring their third goal but couldn’t find that final touch to put the ball in the net. Then in the 67th minute of the game, Galaxy was able to add another goal to their lead. Zardes had the ball on the left flank right outside the top corner of the box. He then crossed it to Sean Franklin who was on the other side of the box. Franklin simply headed to ball towards Keane who shot with his right foot on goal. Busch dove to try to save the shot but it was just outside his reach. Keane scored his second goal of the match and gave LA a three-nil lead.

Read More

Chivas USA stuns the New York Red Bulls scoring three goals

Aug 25, 2013

Carson City, California- The StubHub! Center, August 20, 2013 (Photos: Samuel Coronado)

Chivas USA had just lost a heart breaker of a game on Wednesday and after the game the only thing they were saying was that they were happy that they had a short week. All the players said that when you lose a game like they did against FC Dallas. The Red Bulls were also looking forward to play Chivas USA. They hadn’t played well on the road but they knew that Chivas USA weren’t playing well and they could get three valuable points on the road.

The game started with the Red Bulls attacking a lot more than Chivas USA. When Chivas USA had the ball, it seemed like their attack was stagnate. Red Bulls on the other hand were using both flanks to attack. They had the best chance in beginning of the game when Thierry Henry crossed the ball to the far post to where Fabian Espindola was there to kick the ball on goal. It seemed like it was going to be an easy goal but Dan Kennedy came out of nowhere to reject Espindola’s shot. This save seemed to motivate Chivas USA because they were able to score just minutes after that enormous block. The play started with a bad clearance by Red Bulls. The ball landed close to where Edgar “El Chore” Mejia was at. He took control of the ball and passed it to Carlos Alvarez. Alvarez then passed it to Julio Morales. He received the pass and shot towards goal. Luis Robles couldn’t do anything to stop the shot and Chivas USA was leading the game one-nil.

Then Chivas USA did what Chivas USA has been doing throughout the season, they surrendered their lead. This time though, it happened a lot faster than usual. Just one minute after Chivas USA got the lead, the New York Red Bulls tied it back up. They earned a corner kick on the right side. Henry took it and crossed it towards the back post to where Tim Cahill was at. He jumped and headed it towards goal. A Chivas USA defender seemed to make an excellent goal line clearance but the referee’s assistant ruled that the ball had crossed the goal line. The score was now one-one.
Chivas USA retook the lead in the final minutes of the first half. Carlos Bocanegra had the ball in the middle of the field. He then gave Erick “El Cubo” a long pass towards the top of the box. “El Cubo” let it bounce then finally controlled it. New York Red Bulls’ defender, Ibrahim Sekagya, went up to defend “El Cubo.” He then tried cutting Sekagya to create some space but Sekagya put his body in the way and dropped “El Cubo” in the box. The referee pointed to the penalty spot without any hesitation and rewarded Chivas USA a penalty kick in the 45th minute of the game. “El Cubo” was given the responsibility of taking the penalty kick. He shot low and to the left and scored Chivas USA’s second goal of the game. He gave Chivas USA a two-one lead as they headed into the half.

Chivas USA came out in the second half with all the momentum. They forced Robles into making a few saves and keep the Red Bulls in striking range. Chivas USA was able to strike again in the 81st minute. Bryan de la Fuente had the ball on the left flank. He went running towards the top corner of the box and saw that Carlos Alvarez was wide open on the right side of the box. He crossed the ball to a wide open Alvarez who wasn’t able to control the ball perfectly but was able to control it. He turned and shot but a Red Bull defender was there to block the shot. The rebound didn’t clear the box and “El Cubo” was able to turn around and shot on goal. Robles again couldn’t do anything to save the shot and the ball went into the net giving Chivas USA a three-one lead.

The way Chivas USA was playing gave the impression that they were going to win easily but the New York Red Bulls were able to score another goal to make it interesting. Henry took a free kick and crossed it into the far post where Dax McCarthy elevated over everyone and headed the ball on goal. He scored New York’s second goal to cut Chivas USA’s lead to one only. For the remaining nine minutes, the Red Bulls had all the momentum and forced Kennedy to make even more impressive saves. The game finally ended with Chivas USA winning the game three-two.

Chivas USA will travel to Canada to face the Vancouver Whitecaps FC on September 1.

Read More

Jhonny Gonzalez Knocks Out Abner Mares

Aug 24, 2013



Undefeated Leo Santa Cruz Captures WBC Super Bantamweight Crown

With Third-Round Knockout Over Defending Champion Victor Terrazas;
Replay Is Tomorrow, Sunday, Aug. 25, at 9 a.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME®

CARSON, Calif. (Aug. 24, 2013) – In a leading candidate for Upset of the Year – and possible Knockout of the Year – former two-division world champion and knockout artist Jhonny Gonzalez (55-8, 47 KO’s) registered a stunning 2:55, first-round knockout over previously unbeaten Abner Mares (26-1-1, 14 KO’s) Saturday on SHOWTIME® before 7,686 loud and enthusiastic fans at StubHub Center in Carson, Calif.

Gonzalez’s shocking upset victory in the WBC featherweight title fight sets up a possible showdown with Leo Santa Cruz (25-0-1, 15 KO’s), who scored two knockdowns en route to an impressive third-round knockout over defending WBC super bantamweight champion Victor Terrazas (37-3-1, 21 KO’s) in the SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING co-feature.

“This moment right now is the single greatest and most glorious moment of my life,” said an elated Gonzalez, who reclaimed the 126-pound belt he once held and breathed new life into his career with the win over his former training partner. “When I came to the United States for this fight no one gave me any credit. All they talked about was Mares fighting Santa Cruz. I didn’t say anything but I knew I was getting disrespected.”

Both Gonzalez, from Mexico City, Mexico, and the former WBC featherweight champion, Mares of Downey, Calif., by way of Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, each came out aggressively. Halfway through the opening round, Gonzalez connected with a solid left hook Mares never saw coming, dropping him to the canvas and leading to an eight-count. After Mares made it to his feet, Gonzalez landed another of punches that ended with a left hook and a right cross that knocked Mares backwards. Referee Jack Reiss stepped in and stopped the fight with five seconds to go in the first round.

“I knew I had him badly hurt after the first knockdown,” Gonzalez said.

“I’m good,” said Mares, who held titles at 118 and 122 pounds before claiming the featherweight belt last May. He was making his eighth consecutive appearance on SHOWTIME. “You have to win and you have to learn how to lose in this sport. I’m not in the sport to remain undefeated, but I’m here to fight the best.

“I was alright with the ref’s decision. He did his job and I respect it. But I thought I could go on,” he added. “Now I’m going to take a break and enjoy my family.”

Like Gonzalez, Santa Cruz of Los Angeles, by way of Huetamo, Michoacan, Mexico, went to work early and often against Terrazas, throwing 267 punches in just two and a half rounds. Terrazas, of Guadalajara, was cut just under the right eye in the second round and Santa Cruz took advantage landing punch after punch, finally sending Terrazas down for a nine-count, and then again for an eight-count midway through the third. Referee Lou Moret halted matters at 2:09 of the third round.

“This is a dream come true,” said Santa Cruz, 25, who had fought 106 fewer rounds in his career than Terrazas, who is 30. “I’ve wanted the green belt my entire life. Once I saw the eye start to swell I knew I had to go after him and put the pressure on him.”

Terrazas said, “The eye was not a problem. This was a good fight. He was tough like I expected. He just caught me. I wanted to continue the fight.”

Earlier on SHOWTIME EXTREME Antonio Orozco (18-0, 14 KO’s), San Diego, Calif., overpowered Ivan Hernandez (29-3, 22 KO’s), Miami, Fla., in round three of a scheduled 10-round junior welterweight bout.

In a battle of featherweights, 2012 U.S. Olympian Joseph “Jo Jo” Diaz Jr. (7-0, 5 KO’s) of South El Monte, Calif., looked impressive in a third-round knockout over Noel Mendoza (6-3-1, 1 KO), of Phoenix, Ariz., the referee stopping the bout at 1:54 of the third of the scheduled six-round bout. Diaz knocked Mendoza down with a left cross, right hook combo that sent Mendoza to the canvas for good.

In the first SHOWTIME EXTREME bout between heavyweights, 2012 U.S. Olympian Dominic Breazeale (6-0, 6 KO’s), of Los Angeles, passed the stiffest test of his young career and remained undefeated with his sixth consecutive knockout, this one coming on a TKO in the fifth round against Lenroy Thomas (16-3, 8 KO’s) of St. Catherine, Jamaica.

Brian Kenny hosted the SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING telecast, with Mauro Ranallo calling the action, Al Bernstein and Paulie Malignaggi serving as expert analysts and Jim Gray reporting. Barry Tompkins called the SHOWTIME EXTREME action with Steve Farhood serving as expert analyst. Alejandro Luna called the blow-by-blow for SAP with Raul Marquez serving as color commentator.


Read More