Another unwatchable playoff opener with two teams unwilling to give anything away ahead of the second leg, which is set for 4:30 p.m. Sunday live on ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes.
“Ugly game,” Galaxy coach Bruce Arena said. “Lopsided in calls. The fouls were over two to one in our favor. I’m not sure if that’s good or bad. It made for one crappy game for sure. … Next week, the game’s going to look a lot different.”
Let’s hope so.
Notable: The Galaxy are now winless in the last four games.
If you haven’t yet had enough of Landon Donovan interviews, then you will want to catch Cobi Jones sitting down for an extended 30-minute conversation with the LA Galaxy playmaker in the new Time Warner Cable SportsNet series “Connected With…”
Donovan will talk about his impending retirement and, of course, his omission from the World Cup squad:
“Of course I was hurt…And the part that I haven’t talked a lot about is that it was painful for my family…They had this amazing trip planned, this amazing life journey…Not only are they devastated for their son, uncle, nephew…but it was a really difficult time for us as a family.”
Kickoff is at 5 p.m. live on NBCSN with the return leg in Carson 4:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 9.
From the Galaxy press release:
The winner of the Western Conference Semifinal series will advance to the two-leg Western Conference Championship round, with the conference champions advancing to the MLS Cup match. With a better record than any Eastern Conference team, the Galaxy would host the MLS Cup should the team advance.
Led by first-year head coach Jeff Cassar, Real Salt Lake finished season in third place in the Western Conference with a 15-8-11 record and 56 points. The series marks the second-straight season that the Galaxy face Salt Lake in the Western Conference semifinals.
The Galaxy finished the 2014 MLS Regular Season in second place overall in the MLS standings with an 17-7-10 record and 61 points, scoring 69 goals scored while allowing just 37. LA’s +32 goal differential is the second-highest in MLS history, trailing only the 1998 Galaxy side that recorded a +41 goal differential. The team ends the year with just seven losses in their 34 matches, the fewest in MLS this season.
Last Dance: Galaxy coach Bruce Arena and Galaxy playmaker Landon Donovan, a partnership that began at the international level and blossomed at the club level with two MLS Cup wins in Southern California, begin one last championship quest in earnest today with the regular season championship to be decided over the final two games against Seattle.