Final Result: Galaxy-Bluewings

The Galaxy lost the oh so prestigious Pan-Pacific Championship final 4-2 on penalty kicks tonight, Edson Buddle responsible for a horrendous opening kick that narrowly missed entering orbit and draft pick Kyle Patterson sealing the defeat by fluffing the fourth PK.

A 10-man Galaxy – defender Sean Franklin was issued a straight red for a foolish studs up tackle right in front of the referee in the 79th minute – forced penalty kicks by converting a spot kick 10 minutes after the ejection. Buddle was held from behind at the near post by a defender and Mike Magee scored.

In the end justice was done; the Bluewings out shot the Galaxy 17-9 despite what was a far better performance for the home side than Wednesday, which is what Bruce Arena will be most concerned about.

Attendance: 9,160.

More after the press conference.

Updated: This is why I dislike mixed zones, which means reporters wait in the tunnel and hope a player wanders by. But tonight most chose to slip out by another door, save for a personable Mike Magee who chatted for quite a while. I’m short on time tonight, so I’ll post that Q&A later.

For now, here are some quotes from Coach Bruce Arena, who observed that the Bluewings were more experienced than a young Galaxy team and it showed.

“The first half we struggled with the speed of play,” he said. “The Suwon team put us under a lot of pressure, they did a great job stepping to the ball. We weren’t quick enough technically or mentally to deal with it. I thought they really had the better of us in the first half. In the second half I thought our team played much better and obviously the game had slowed down and it benefited us.

“Today we had an opportunity to play a lot of young kids – I thought Omar Gonzalez had a great game. Yohance Marshall did well and A.J. DeLaGarza. And these are young kids who have just played their first couple of games professionally, so I was impressed by that.

“We still haven’t passed the ball very well. Our passing was not good – that needs improvement. We need a little bit more speed in attack; (Landon) Donovan will give us that when he gets back.

“Defensively we were actually pretty solid compared to last year.”

BTW, Eddie Lewis, projected as the starting left back, has a strained hamstring and “will be out a few weeks,” Arena said. It’s the first time in his career the 34-year-old has had a hamstring injury.

Galaxy trivia question (and I’ll not take credit for recalling this) suggested by the resident stats guru on the Galaxy PR staff who remarked as the club chased a one-goal deficit in the game: when was the last time the Galaxy were down by an own goal late in a “championship” match played at Home Depot Center and what happened? I had to think for a moment about this one – and it was an unforgettable ending to a great game.

First to answer in the comment section gets a copy of oh, how about the Official Pan-Pacific Championship Program so you can truly experience the tournament in all its glory.

Highlights:

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About Nick Green

South Bay-based Los Angeles News Group columnist and blogger Nick Green writes about soccer at the 100 Percent Soccer blog at www.insidesocal.com/soccer and craft beer at the Beer Goggles blog at www.insidesocal.com/beer. Cheers!
  • Ben

    Good:
    I liked the performances of DeLaGarza and Gonzalez.

    Bad:
    Allen (had a horrible stint) and the invisible Migliorazi are causes for concern.
    Sanneh didn’t do that well and IMO was lucky not to be sent off for that handball shortly before the break with a 2nd yellow.

    Other:
    Kovalenko (when not close to a booking) is a huge improvement, but some creativity in the center and speed upfront/wings wouldn’t hurt.

    If Lewis is the new left back, who’s our left midfielder ?

    Thanks for all info, Nick.

    Nick replies: Agree with virtually everything you wrote. Cuts are coming and I’m betting Allen won’t survive, neither will Sanneh and Miglioranzi is a big question mark.

    Lots of spots still open. I remain unconvinced Sean Franklin is an MLS quality defender. That was a stupid red card, he was lucky not to give away a penalty and he’s prone to potentially game changing errors.

    Oh, and Kovalenko is (as always) a red waiting to happen.

  • Chris Dreyer

    Galaxy vs Pachuca in the Superliga final. Galaxy down 1-0, CK hits the incredible bike to tie it up. We go into penalties and the win is on Landon’s shoulders. He misses the PK and Pachuca goes on to win. So sad… :(

    Was that the right answer? If so you can keep the program, lol.

    BTW – don’t think Lewis is our new left back. Isn’t Dunivant nursing an injury?

    Nick replies: You’re right, Chris. That was an incredible bicycle kick and one I know Klein will always treasure. A great game (despite the result). And I think Dunivant is healthy, but not match fit. Arena pretty much said Saturday Lewis was his first choice at left back, BTW.

  • Chris Dreyer

    Now that I answered the trivia question wanted to respond to some of your comments…

    You’re so right, Allen and Sanneh are DONE. They were pathetic tonight.

    I don’t see how you can remain unconvinced that Sean Franklin in an MLS quality defender. Sean Franklin was outstanding during the ENTIRE year last year and was called up to the USMNT camp twice. If he’s not MLS quality then what is he, USL quality? He’s coming back from injury and frankly shouldn’t have been given a red for that tackle. I think everyone would agree that it was a dumb tackle but a harsh call.

    He definitely had a bad game, but the guy just had sports hernia surgery and is playing with an all new backline right now.

    Anyway… just my thoughts… now it’s time for bed. Love the blog!

    Nick replies: Thanks, Chris. Franklin just doesn’t fill me with confidence and yeah I know he’s young, was surrounded by crap last year and now the personnel has changed. But still, I want to see more consistency from him and not find I’ve noticed him because of an error.

  • Gabe

    Nick, do you have any insight into why Bruce has not played Brandon McDonald this whole preseason? I haven’t heard that he was injured. He was one of the few bright spots last year, I thought he was a young CM with tons of potential. What’s going on here? Surely he’s in Arena’s plans?

    Nick replies: No, I don’t and I was talking with a press box colleague about this last night. I know Bruce wants to see newcomers in games rather than players he knew from last season, but I still thought we would have seen a little more of the likes of McDonald, Troy Roberts and Mike Randolph. If I were one of those players, I’d be nervous.

  • Ben

    Franklin had a bad game, even aside the own goal and red card. Just keep in mind he missed most of the off-season through injuries, recovery.

    I remember that inaugural SuperLiga final fondly as well despite the result.

    Stupid own goal by passback Pete, someone getting injured, the awesome bicycle kick goal by Klein in stoppage time, Landon kissing his rings and having his effort saved and the bleached Xavier shooting over the goal…

    I went to work (it was about a 5-8 a.m. game over here) late, and despite not having won on an adrenalin rush, because of Klein’s goal shortly before the end…

    Oh and btw that could be a formula for Galaxy Finals…
    Own goal, equalizing shortly before the end, still losing in PKs…