Seattle is seventh place in the Western Conference on 35 points. The Galaxy is tied with Colorado on 48. The Galaxy had a good night on Saturday without even playing as FC Dallas, Real Salt Lake and Colorado all failed to pick up three points, settling for draws.
Can the Galaxy take advantage and move closer to the top spot?
The Galaxy tied with Colorado on 48 points, five behind FC Dallas. A victory today will give Galaxy sole possession of second place and clinch a playoff berth.
Game day links
Things have moved rapidly for Daniel Steres since December.
One week later, Omar Gonzalez was transferred to Pachuca in Mexico, essentially opening up a spot in central defense for someone, anyone.
Steres, who was born in Burbank and raised in Calabasas, has been a gem for the Galaxy this season, becoming a fixture on the backline. As the team enters the final month of the season, Steres leads the way in minutes played (2,490).
“He’s doing well,” Galaxy coach Bruce Arena said. “It has probably been a typical year for a young defender, he’s had his ups and downs a little bit, but for the most part he’s been fairly steady, but we still see little dips in his performance and other times where it is quite good.
“Obviously, we want him to stabilize that a little bit and be a bit more consistent.
Steres made his Galaxy debut in the opening game, going 90 minutes and scoring a goal.
He’s started 27 of 29 games so far this season.
“I’ve definitely grown throughout the season, playing at this level,” Steres said. “There are still things, mistakes, plays that I have to work on to get better and better.
“It is just a sense of knowing that I’ve gotten into the squad now, before at the beginning of the year it might have been how am I’m going to get into the squad. Now, that I’m in it, it’s trying to stay in it and help the team as much as possible.”
Steres, 25, knows he is far from being a finished product and he said he agrees with Arena’s assessment.
“Hopefully, peak as much as I can toward the end of the playoffs. I feel like I’ve got the trust of a lot of the veteran guys. I pride myself on staying healthy and staying on the field and being someone that’s consistent, week in and week out and someone the team can count on.
The Galaxy (11-4-15, 48 points) can clinch a berth in the upcoming MLS Playoffs with a victory against the Seattle Sounders, Sunday at StubHub Center (1 p.m.; ESPN).
The Galaxy is current in second place in the Western Conference. The Sounders are in seventh place, five points outside the sixth and final spot, currently held by Sporting Kansas City (40 points).
This will be the third meeting this season between the teams. The Galaxy is 1-0-1.
Toronto FC is the lone team that has clinched a playoff berth so far.
It was one of those games where the Galaxy should have lost, but thanks to the magic from Landon Donovan, the Galaxy escaped with one point a 2-2 draw against Sporting Kansas City, Sunday.
Donovan entered the game in the 74th minute with the Galaxy trailing 2-1. Two minutes later, Donovan took the feed from Robbie Rogers and slotted the ball by Sporting Kansas City goalkeeper Tim Mejia.
The Galaxy (48 points) moves into sole possession of second place in the Western Conference, four behind first-place FC Dallas with four games remaining, two against FC Dallas.
The Galaxy took an early 1-0 lead on an Alan Gordon in the seventh minute. That was the only life the Galaxy showed in the first half.
SKC tied the game in the 50th minute on a goal from Jacob Peterson and then took a 2-1 lead on Dominic Dwyer’s goal in the 69th minute, setting the stage for Donovan’s heroics.
DONOVAN SCORES! 2-2! pic.twitter.com/0AZiWoy1To
— Total MLS (@TotalMLS) September 18, 2016
First-place FC Dallas played to a draw as did Colorado and Real Salt Lake suffered a 1-0 defeat to Houston.
With a victory today against Sporting Kansas City, the Galaxy can move to within two points of first place FC Dallas, which is huge considering they will meet twice next month.
Sporting Kansas City begins the day in the sixth and final playoff spot in the West with 39 points, four ahead of Seattle.
This should be fun. Tune in to KCOP/13 at 11 a.m. for kickoff
Game day read: Giovani dos Santos providing much-needed spark
Mexican star Giovani dos Santos was unveiled as the successor to Landon Donovan in August 2015, when he showed off a jersey with the same number the Redlands native made his own (Photo by Staff Photographer Steve McCrank.)
There were a lot more Landon Donovan No. 10 shirts than ones reading dos Santos on the back Sunday on display at StubHub Center as Donovan returned to MLS after an almost two-year absence.
Is dos Santos worthy of wearing that No. 10 jersey?
— Nick Green (@LAsoccerblog) September 12, 2016
This is essentially the stretch drive of the season. The Galaxy has six games remaining, including today. With a victory, the Galaxy can vault into second place in the Western Conference and would be just four points behind FC Dallas.
Robbie Keane should be back today. Landon Donovan could be available. Oh and Orlando City SC has the firepower that could give the Galaxy defense some problems.
This should be fun.
Game day links (Mostly on Landon Donovan, OK, all about Landon Donovan)