The L.A. Galaxy started fast and furious against arch rival Real Salt Lake but a defensive lapse and an uninspired second half led to a 2-1 RSL victory. The loss was the first in the last 10 games over all competitions but the way the Galaxy lost this one will have L.A. searching for answers.
The Galaxy came into the game sans half of the starting backline with A.J. Delagarza and Todd Dunivant out and L.A. would depend on the youth of Tommy Meyer and Bryan Gaul in their place. The health of the starting defense and lack thereof has been a striking key to the success of L.A. in 2012 and tonight was no different.
The Galaxy came out guns blazing controlling posession through the first 20 minutes, peppering RSL keeper Nick Rimando and cracking a shot off the woodwork. Robbie Keane continued his run of form catching a pass out of the air on the left side of goal on striking it into the back of the net to give the Galaxy a 1-0 lead in the 17th minute......and that is where the highlights end for L.A.
Fabian Espindola beat the L.A. backline twice in the 25th and 28th minutes rattling the Galaxy who had been dominating up to that point. The Galaxy never really recovered from the sequence and lost all momentum.
The second half was particularly disappointing as L.A. found few chances. Edson Buddle came on and looked particularly lost and out of synch. Landon Donovan went down late with a knee injury and the chances of the Galaxy finishing as a top 3 seed likely down with him as Seattle sits only one point back with four games left. L.A. has two games left, one of which is against Seattle. The loss increases the possibility of a one and done clash between L.A. and either the Vancouver Whitecaps or FC Dallas at the Home Depot Center to start the playoffs, something the Galaxy had hoped to avoid./