A lovely night for football here in the cool South Bay.
Left back Todd Dunivant has returned to the Galaxy starting XI after two games out with neck and back spasms in place of A.J. DeLaGarza, while Chris Klein gets a rare start in midfield in place of Brazilian Juninho who returned home to attend to a personal matter. It’s uncertain when he will return to Southern California. Leonardo starts again in central defense with Gregg Berhalter missing again (virus).
The Galaxy starting XI (4-4-2): Donovan Ricketts, Sean Franklin, Omar Gonzalez, Leonardo, Todd Dunivant, Chris Klein, Chris Birchall, Landon Donovan, Michael Stephens, Edson Buddle, Mike Magee.
Options off the bench include Tristan Bowen and Jovan Kirovski.
Kansas City (4-5-1) starts top scorer Kei Kamara of Lawndale in midfield, with Birahim Diop the lone front-runner. Veteran forward Josh Wolff is out (illness). The Wizards attacking options off the bench include Teal Bunbury.
The Wizards draw first blood and as noted this morning that means they should win if history this season is any guide.
Davy Arnaud scored at the near post in the 12th minute, Kei Kamara crossing with a plodding Leonardo all at sea and two Galaxy defenders ball watching on the goal.
We’ve see this before of late, huh?
Halftime: Galaxy 0 Wizards 1
Let’s see, the Wizards’ Birahim Diop was dispossessed by Galaxy goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts in a one on one in the 36th minute and the Galaxy’s Mike Magee displayed his usual poor first touch in front of the net by sending a cross wide of the goal two minutes before the break.
Apart from those isolated incidents there’s been limited goalmouth excitement with the two teams combining for just one – yes, one – shot on target. And, of course, that’s why the Wizards lead by one.
Updated: Galaxy 0 Wizards 2
Things went from bad to worse for the Galaxy in the 70th minute as the Wizards’ Jimmy Conrad squeezed one in by the left post from a Davy Arnaud free kick with an effort that left the Galaxy’s Donovan Ricketts flailing helplessly.
The Galaxy’s defense isn’t stepping up at all and is meekly surrendering the first step (and the initiative) to the Wizards.
A third loss in the last four games looms for LA.
Final: Galaxy 0 Wizards 2
Now, that was painful.
The Galaxy’s season continues what appears an inexorable decline into not just mediocrity, but abysmal ineptitude.
I wouldn’t mind so much, but I’ve got to sit in the press box and watch Chivas USA and D.C. United bumble around the HDC field Sunday and I was hoping for one half-decent game this weekend.
The extent of the Galaxy’s offense in the second half amounted to a couple of Chris Birchall shots – and after picking up a yellow card he misses the next game at Chicago.
The Galaxy now have just one win in their last five MLS games.
The boos are raining down as the final whistle is blown.