Final: Galaxy 1 New York Red Bulls 1
That didn’t settle much.
New York got a road point and extended their unbeaten run to four games.
After their win over Chivas USA, Salt Lake City are now atop the Western Conference on goal difference from the Galaxy and expansion Timbers.
I stand corrected: The Galaxy retain the lead out west on goal difference over the surprising expansion Timbers.
Next for the Galaxy: the Union in Philadelphia.
Bouna Coundoul saved an 81st minute shot from a David Beckham free kick that had appeared destined for the right corner of the net. Red Bull Dan Richards replied a minute later, skittering a right-footed shot from 20 yards off the bottom of the left post.
Dwayne De Rosario had a excellent solo run at the Galaxy defense that began in his own half and ended when he tried to poke the ball around Ricketts in the 76th minute. Chris Birchall has replaced Mike Magee in the 78th minute.
Juan Agudelo has come on for Red Bull striker Luke Rodgers in the 72nd minute. Angel just headed a Todd Dunivant cross straight at Bouna Coundoul from about six yards out.
Celebrity alert: Leonardo DeCaprio is at the game in a suite watching, of course, what the reporter next to me has termed a “Titanic struggle.”
Juan Pablo Angel has misfired yet again in the 55th minute wasting a fine David Beckham pass with a rather casual effort that went wide of the goal when he had only the goalkeeper to beat.
Each team had eight shots, six on target for the Galaxy, four for New York. Probably the most watchable Galaxy game of the season so far.
Donovan is going to regret not putting a little more zip on the ball that Ream prevented from counting as a goal.
Dan Richards was credited with the assist on the Henry goal.
Incidentally, the MLS Players Union has just released the 2011 salary info. Interesting reading as usual (now we know, for instance, Chivas USA couldn’t fit Benny Feilhaber under the cap – they are seriously over-paying some players – for instance, $182,000 for defender Michael Umana?).
Landon Donovan has scored the equalizer in the 41st minute from a David Beckham corner kick. Two NYRB defenders stood and basically watched as he rose for the ball.
Donovan should have had a second just two minutes later collecting a long pass from Beckham, who was in his own half, beating goalkeeper Bouna Coundoul and sending the ball toward the goal from 19 yards. Remarkably, alert defender Tim Ream scooped it up and prevented the goal with a last-ditch clearance, although it looked to me as if the whole of the ball was over the whole of the line.
It’s halftime of a highly entertaining game.
Donovan Ricketts made a fine save from a strong Joel Lindpere shot in the 37th minute.
Juan Pablo Angel had the ball in the in the net in the 25th minute, finishing off a Landon Donovan cross. Television replays showed he was just a fraction offside.
David Beckham was lucky to escape a
red yellow card after petulantly slamming the ball into the crowd shortly after being called offside in the 21st minute.
With just over 15 minutes gone this one is turning out to be a wide open affair with end to end action, the two teams swapping scoring opportunities and both goalkeepers taking turns making excellent saves.
Thierry Henry scored his fourth goal in his last four games in the fourth minute (3:37 to be precise) for the visitors with a gift of a goal that further underlines Juan Pablo Angel’s goal drought. Especially when he whiffed on the ball a couple of yards from goal a matter of seconds after the restart.
Striker Adam Cristman returns from an injury and is the Galaxy’s lone option up front off the bench. It’s the first time he’s made a game-day Galaxy roster.
The only change for Red Bulls Coach Hans Backe from the team that beat Sporting Kansas City last weekend is midfielder Teemu Taino, who is absent with a groin strain. Mehdi Ballouchy gets the start in his place.
The star-studded Red Bulls XI: Bouna Coundoul-Jan Gunnart Solli, Rafael marquez, Tim Ream, Roy Miller-Dane Richards, Mehdi Ballouchy, Dwayne De Rosario, Joel Lindpere-Thierry Henry, Luke Rodgers
Wayne Rooney’s brother, John is on the bench, as is teenage sensation Juan Agudelo.
The burning question today: Will Juan Pablo Angel show up against his old team (and as fellow blogger Dan Loney pointed out to me when I bumped into him in the Red Car Brewery in Torrance before the game, if he doesn’t show up against his old club, will he ever?).
Incidentally, David Beckham and one of his sons was involved in a minor car accident Friday on the San Diego Freeway in Torrance. Neither was hurt.
The game is on ESPN2.
Refresh this post for updates throughout the game.