Galaxy forward Robbie Keane, pictured in a match against San Jose in 2015, has scored twice in the first three games of the 2016 season, but only on penalty kicks. (Marcio Jose Sanchez/The Associated Press)
Although the Galaxy outshot San Jose 17-6, including a 7-1 advantage in the first half when the sides where an even 11 vs. 11 on the field, during Saturdays’ 3-1 victory, captain Robbie Keane was not impressed.
“I wouldn’t say it was a great day for us, apart from the win,” Keane told Time Warner Cable after the game.
In a tactical change from previous games, Sebastian Lletget played up top next to Keane with Mike Magee sliding back into the right midfield. The Earthquakes were very compact during the first half before Simon Dawkins got sent off with a red card, limiting the Galaxy’s looks at goal, but there was good passing between Magee, Lletget and Gyasi Zardes.
Yet Robbie Keane, the King himself, has yet to score a goal within the run of play this year. The forward has two goals in the first three games of the season, with both coming on penalty kicks. He has five combined shots in the first three games of 2016 when last year, he averaged three shots a game.
“Create more chances, keep the ball,” Keane said of what the offense needs to do to improve. “That’s two games that I haven’t touched the ball very often … so changing the system or something because when you play the front on your own, naturally you don’t get many touches as a number nine. But what you should be doing is getting some chances in and I haven’t gotten any chances in the last few games so that’s a bit disappointing. So hopefully that will change in the next few weeks.” Continue reading →
The Galaxy welcome their in-state rival for the first California Clasico of the year Saturday at 7:30 p.m. as they try to shake off a last-second loss to Colorado last weekend. The Earthquakes are one of three MLS teams to start the season with two straight wins, but you can throw out the records for a rivalry as heated as this one.
Forward Giovani dos Santos is likely out for Saturday’s game, head coach Bruce Arena said on Thursday. Additionally, Gordon (neck) and left back Ashley Cole (back) are healthy. Goalkeeper Dan Kennedy will be out with a partially torn groin for up to a month. Defender Leonardo is still recovering from knee surgery and will be out a few more weeks. Midfielder Jeff Larentowicz is still working back from offseason hernia surgery, while forward Jose Villarreal is listed on the MLS injury report with a leg injury.
Since San Jose returned to the league in 2008, the overall series is almost even, with the Earthquakes owning a 10-9-7 advantage.
With a swift left-footed volley, Colorado’s Marco Pappa yanked one point away from the L.A. Galaxy in the final 30 seconds of Saturday’s 1-0 loss to the Rapids.
The Galaxy looked primed to escape the high-altitude of Dick’s Sporting Goods Park with a draw until Daniel Steres missed a clearance in the fifth minute of stoppage time. Pappa capitalized on the error and buried the shot into the back of the net.
The Galaxy’s three new European signings, Jelle Van Damme, Nigel de Jong and Ashley Cole, will be in the spotlight Saturday as they play not only their first MLS road game, but their first MLS game in altitude at Colorado’s Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. Altitude was one of the many MLS-specific difficulties Steven Gerrard struggled with last year after he joined the team in the middle of the season. Continue reading →