The Galaxy is winless no more.
Thanks to a pair of second-half goals (Dave Romney and Emmanuel Boateng), the Galaxy defeated Real Salt Lake, 2-1, Saturday night for their first victory of the year.
RSL jumped ahead 1-0 in the 11th minute. Romney tied the game in the 69th and then Boateng sealed it his tap in on a nice cross from Romain Alessandrini.
RSL went down to 10 men after Kyle Beckerman picked up two yellow cards (34th and 44th minutes).
— LA Galaxy (@LAGalaxy) March 19, 2017
They said it:
Curt Onalfo on fight from the team:
“You could see the character of the team in the first two games of the year… It took strength of character to get back in it. I thought we showed enormous grit. I thought we pressed and we used the space of the extra player, and that doesn’t always happen, so easier said than done, especially when you’re on the road. Credit to the guys for a great effort and more importantly being intelligent tactically in the way we played.”
Jermaine Jones on the victory:
“I say it always. The team is young. It’s a process. We have to build something and we’re building. Of course, wins help building. It helps people to believe and it helps to keep the outside quiet.”
up next: The Galaxy is off until Aug. 1. The time away should help Gyasi Zardes, Ashley Cole and Giovani dos Santos heal up from their injuries.
Other than that, things are looking good for the Galaxy as they prepare for the second game of the season today against the Portland Timbers.
Jones and Romney were both hit with one-game suspensions and will miss today’s game.
Portland scored five goals in their season opener last week. The new-look Galaxy defense could be in a rough day.
Gameday preview: Shorthand Galaxy faces Portland
The Galaxy opened the 2017 season with a 2-1 loss to FC Dallas last Saturday. This week, they’re back home against another tough opponent as the Portland Timbers enter town for a Sunday (4 p.m.; FS1).
Portland opened the season with a dominating 5-1 victory over Minnesota United, Friday.
“I thought we controlled the game,” Galaxy coach Curt Onalfo said Tuesday of last week’s opener. “When you looked back on it, we dictated the game on both sides of the ball. So, what I liked it, is that I thought we built very, very well from our goalkeeper out. We created chances out of the run of play in transition and on set pieces, enough chances where you should win the game.
“What I’m not happy about is the goals we conceded. I thought they were soft goals and goals that can be prevented. That part, I wasn’t pleased with, but if you look overall at the performance, a lot of really good things to build on.”
The Galaxy can’t have the type of lapses they had against FC Dallas. Diego Valeri and Fanendo Adi both scored a pair of goals last week.
“I think they’re the best team in MLS at this point,” Onalfo said of Portland. “They’re at full strength, they’re attacking players are playing very well as you could have seen from their 5-1 result. They’re very good defensively as well.”
Poor Galaxy finishing, crucial defensive errors and a general lack of experience at this level overwhelmed the flashes of promise of things to come from Jermaine Jones and a not yet match-fit DP Romain Alessandrini in the home loss to Dallas.
Las Vegas-based sports book Bovada has installed the New York Red Bulls as favorites to win MLS Cup at 5-1, with Toronto second at 11-2.
The Galaxy are third favorites at 6-1, but the odds on them lifting another MLS Cup have lengthened, presumably as oddsmakers question the depth on the squad and relative absence of big names.
The Houston Dynamo and Minnesota United are the MLS long shots, incidentally, with odds of 100-1 and 125-1 respectively
Indeed, not a single Galaxy player appears on the short-list of players favored to win the MLS scoring race; the favorite is David Villa.