Yes, folks, it’s that time of year again. International club friendlies are everywhere this summer in America, and Bruce Arena’s Los Angeles Galaxy are not immune to the fact that they, too, have to take on the best in the world.
Well, it’s going to happen if you’re the defending MLS Cup Champions. But against a club like Carlo Ancelotti’s Real Madrid Club de Futbol, MLS turns to a fourth-division recreational beer league. Sure, the parity is a major selling point, but it La Liga, clubs Real Madrid and FC Barcelona hold the keys to the cash.
The outcome should not be in doubt in this mismatch. What is in doubt is who will score and the final scoreline. Here are 10 bold predictions for this friendly between the Los Angeles Galaxy and Real Madrid, scheduled for Thursday, Aug. 1 at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz.
1. No goals from Los Angeles
You can forget about Los Angeles being in this one. There will be no goals from the Los Angeles Galaxy in this contest.
2. Cristiano Ronaldo with a brace
Last season in all competition, CR7 put in work with 55 goals, including 34 in La Liga. Against the Los Angeles Galaxy, Ronaldo will look to keep his form alive with a brace.
3. Angel Di Maria will score
One of the underrated players for Real Madrid has been Angel di Maria. He had nine goals in all competition last season, and he will be in all goal to make it pop.
4. Two assists for Mesut Ozil
Mesut Ozil was Real Madrid’s leading assists man, with 23 asists in all competitions. Ozil will put his playmaking abilities to test against a team comparable to that of the Segunda Division in terms of talent.
5. A goal and an assist for Karim Benzema
You talk about balanced players and you have to talk about Karim Benzema. 20 goals and 19 assists in all competitions is not something to laugh at. Benzema will show the Galaxy how it’s done in terms of being a creator and a destroyer.
6. No goals or assists for Kaka
One player that will not get on the score sheet is Kaka. The Los Angeles Galaxy tried to secure his rights, but they were unable to pry him away from Los Blancos. Age may be a number for some, but for Kaka, it will be more than. There will be no assists or goals from this storied Brazilian.
7. At least five saves from Iker Casillas
Iker Casillas has been the face of Real Madrid’s goalkeeping prowess for many years, and it seems his cult status keeps getting better and better. Casillas will make at least five saves against a Galaxy team that will give it its best shot to make this interesting.
8. Under five saves for Carlo Cudicini
Despite his knowledge of playing in Europe and knowing the talent that is out there, Galaxy goalkeeper Carlo Cudicini is going to have it tough against a Real Madrid side looking to get back in form. Cudicini will be making under five saves on the day in Glendale.
9. Under 30 fouls and five yellows
With this being a friendly, the competitive spirit will always be there. And both the Galaxy and Real Madrid will not make it easy on each other. Under 30 fouls will be whistled and under five yellows will be awarded, with no red cards.
10. An easy victory for Real Madrid
You can chalk this up as just another victory for Real Madrid over the poor man’s Real Madrid known as the Los Angeles Galaxy.
Real Madrid 4, Los Angeles Galaxy 0