Bruce Arena’s Los Angeles Galaxy scratched and clawed their way to a 1-0 shutout victory over Jorge Rodriguez’s Isidro Metapan in the 2013-14 CONCACAF Champions League Group Stage. With the win, LA are now 2-0-0 (six points) and only need a draw with C.S. Cartagines next week to take part in the Championship Round. Also known as the knockout stages.
The kicker: it was the reserves that did the heavy lifting. Even better: no Robbie Keane needed! Take a look at the player ratings for the Los Angeles Galaxy against Isidro Metapan on Wednesday night.
Brian Rowe 9
The View from Avalon’s Man of the Match is Brian Rowe. Only three saves, but each of them were huge. On the Opta Chalkboard, his distribution was decent with a 72 percent pass success rate and he also made one clearance. It may be only be Metapan, but a shutout win is a shutout win.
Kofi Opare 7.5
Six clearances, two defender blocks, two interceptions, two recoveries and an 86 percent pass success rate. Opare closed down Nicolas Munoz late and neutralized his effectiveness for the course of the match. An improved performance, but it’s sullied by his yellow card.
Rafael Garcia 8
Garcia has been playing right back in MLS Reserve League action and he was clutch against Los Caleros. Garcia had eight recoveries, four clearances, two interceptions and a 74 percent pass success rate on 57 touches.
Tommy Meyer 7
Six clearances, two recoveries, three interceptions and a 67 percent pass success rate. Meyer may not have been an ace in spreading the ball around, but he stonewalled Munoz late in the first half, and that more than makes up for the said deficiency.
Greg Cochrane 6.5
Decent performance from Cochrane, who I highlighted in my live blog. Four clearances, five recoveries and an 80 percent pass success rate on 60 touches. However, he earns a deduction for his unsuccessful crosses-five in all.
Pablo Mastroeni 6
Despite an 88 percent pass success rate and four recoveries, Pablo Mastroeni made some mistakes that could have cost the Galaxy. Unsurprisingly, he had to be subbed out for Juninho.
Michael Stephens 5.5
Five recoveries, two interceptions, two tackles won and an 80 percent pass success rate. Despite all that, it was another below-average performance from Stephens, and you can only wonder how much longer he will be on the books with this display.
Laurent Courtois 8
Five recoveries, and 82 percent pass success rate, and the match-winner. That’s a great way to introduce yourself to your new fans, Laurent. Care to do it again this weekend, Monsieur?
Jose Villareal 8
Gets a bonus for the match-winning assist, two key passes, two successful flick ons, a tackle won and seven recoveries in spite of a 71 percent pass success rate. This is why he on MLSSoccer.com’s 24 Under 24 list.
Chandler Hoffman 4
This is why Chandler Hoffman rarely gets a start on the first team. Only two clearances and three recoveries despite a 95 percent pass success rate on 22 touches…and a bevy of wasted shots. Step your game up, Mr. Hoffman, or you won’t be back here next year. That is an order from the View.
Jack McBean 4.5
One shot off target, one clearance, one recovery, a decrepit 58 percent pass success rate on 24 touches, seven unsuccessful flick ons and two unsuccessful crosses. McBean really didn’t recover from his shoulder injury. He just hasn’t been the same player in terms of form.
Gyasi Zardes 5
A tackle won, an interception, a clearance, a recovery, a key pass and a successful flick-on. Those are not bad…until you take into consideration that this was off the bench and the pass success rate was 54 percent on 11 touches.
Five recoveries and a 73 percent pass success rate for Juninho, who was brought in to relieve Mastroeni and close down the match. Add also a 66 percent cross success rate and a shot on target, and this could have been a whole lot worse for Metapan. And it should have been.
Marcelo Sarvas 5
100 percent pass success rate on nine touches, a clearance and two recoveries. Like Juninho, Sarvas was also brought in to close down the match and preserve the shutout. There is a possibility that Sarvas and Juninho will be starting next week against Cartagines. Stay tuned on the View from Avalon.