Oct 27, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Los Angeles Galaxy forward Robbie Keane (7) disputes a call by referee Mark Geiger in favor of the Seattle Sounders during the first half at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Galaxy vs. Seattle Sounders: 6 Things We Learned


Bruce Arena’s Los Angeles Galaxy end the month of October with a draw, a loss, and another draw. They spared themselves some Major League blushes in Major League Soccer with a 1-1 draw against Sigi Schmid’s Seattle Sounders at CenturyLink Field in Seattle, Wash.

The Galaxy end the regular season with a record of 15-11-8 (53 points) and will continue their MLS Cup defense in November in the Western Conference Semifinals against Real Salt Lake. Here are six things we learned from the finale to an exciting regular season between the Los Angeles Galaxy and Seattle Sounders.

1. Another slow first half

Early on in the first half, Seattle looked to take the bull by the horns, and a shot from Adam Moffat in the third minute was the warning the Sounders were giving. Seattle were dominating the ball possession battle early, and Clint Dempsey almost had open space in the fifth minute.

Eddie Johnson won a corner in the eighth minute of play, but Djimi Traore couldn’t cash in. A cross in the 10th minute was collected by Galaxy goalkeeper Jaime Penedo. Kofi Opare conceded another corner for Seattle in the 12th minute, and Moffat should have done better inside the box, as his shot hit the side netting.

2. The Deuce breaks his duck

Oct 27, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Sounders forward Clint Dempsey (2) celebrates after scoring a goal against the Los Angeles Galaxy during the 1st half at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

Robbie Keane won LA’s first corner in the 14th minute, that was cleared. Eddie Johnson was offsides in the 17th minute on an apparent breakaway. In the 21st minute, following a ball possession battle, a Seattle set piece went array. The Sounders were playing without the services of Mauro Rosales, who had injury issues.

Landon Donovan had a shot on goal in the 25th minute but Michael Gspurning was able to make the save. On the counter, Lamar Neagle failed to dial in. Gyasi Zardes had a shot in the 29th minute which was collected by the Austrian netminder.

Clint Dempsey finally scored in the 30th minute on a volley that didn’t have much in it, but it was a good tap off the delivery from Lamar Neagle that was poorly saved by Jaime Penedo.

3. LA get the short end of the stick

The Galaxy were on the make after that Dempsey goal, and the Sounders almost got ahead by two on what would have been an own goal by Greg Cochrane. Neagle’s next chance in the 36th minute was collected by Penedo. Dempsey almost finished off another chance in the 38th minute off the overlapping run.

Robbie Rogers forced Gspurning’s hand in the 40th minute and a corner that was cleared. Another corner in the 42nd minute from the Galaxy was said to be converted by Omar Gonzalez but Mark Geiger did not point to the center circle. Keane was cautioned for a foul on Djimi Traore in the 43rd minute of play. In the 45th minute, a corner was headed wide right by Eddie Johnson.

Seattle Sounders FC LA Galaxy
7 Attempts on Goal 4
4 Shots on Target 4
2 Shots off Target 0
1 Blocked Shots 0
2 Corner Kicks 3
4 Fouls 5
7 Open Play Crosses 6
4 Offsides 0
0 First Yellow Cards 1
0 Second Yellow Cards 0
0 Red Cards 0
23 Duels Won 16
58% Duels Won % 41%
294 Total Pass 166
83% Passing Accuracy % 74%
62.9% Possession 37.1%

4. Chances go missing in second half

Los Angeles needed to get things going in the second half to avoid a matchup with Colorado at StubHub Center. As for Seattle, they wanted a matchup with Real Salt Lake because they have fared well against them earlier this season. In the 48th minute, a corner was poorly redirected by Dempsey. Opare’s recovery in the 53rd minute forced a throw that nearly paid in the form of a successful counter for the Galaxy.

A shot from Rogers in the 56th minute was a bit optomistic but was sailed wide left. Omar Gonzalez denied Clint Dempsey in the 57th minute of play. Marcelo Sarvas was cautioned in the 60th minute for a challenge on Brad Evans.

5. Seattle put on a defensive clinic

Oct 27, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Los Angeles Galaxy defender Omar Gonzalez (4) beats Seattle Sounders forward Clint Dempsey (2) to a loose ball during the first half at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

A free kick in the 62nd minute from Marc Burch was cleared by the Galaxy back line. The Sounders had to close out the match in proper fashion with 30 minutes and stoppage to go. In the 65th minute, a set piece for Donovan was cleared by Gspurning. Keane pulled a muscle in the 67th minute and would be playing gimpy for the rest of the match.

On the counter in the 69th minute, Eddie Johnson mistimed his run and did a little too much. Gspurning almost pulled off a howler seconds later on another Galaxy counter but did enough to make the collection anyway. Keane butchered a chance in the 71st minute to equalize. In the 74th minute, Gyasi Zardes had a shot that was blocked. Another shot from Keane second later was collected by Gspurning.

6. Keane equalizes late to salvage draw

Thus, in addition to routine defending from the Sounders, LA were paying the price for poor finishing for most of the game. Marcelo Sarvas had a volley in the 76th minute sky out of reach. However, Keane equalized in the 78th minute after gaining some space and earning a few lucky bounces on the CenturyLink Field turf.

Penedo had to go off his line in the 81st minute to make a clearance. Zardes had too tight of an angle to break the deadlock in the 83rd minute of play. Substitute Jose Villareal won a corner in the 84th minute off a one-timer but it was cleared. In the first minute of stoppage time, Mauro Rosales’s first corner went south and was cleared. In the third minute of stoppage time, a corner was eventually cleared, and that was all she wrote.

Seattle Sounders FC LA Galaxy
13 Attempts on Goal 12
4 Shots on Target 6
5 Shots off Target 4
4 Blocked Shots 2
8 Corner Kicks 4
15 Fouls 12
19 Open Play Crosses 16
6 Offsides 0
0 First Yellow Cards 2
0 Second Yellow Cards 0
0 Red Cards 0
48 Duels Won 43
52% Duels Won % 47%
551 Total Pass 382
83% Passing Accuracy % 79%
59% Possession 41%

Western Conference

# Club PTS GP PPG W L T GF GA GD HG HGD RG RGD
1 y - Portland Timbers 57 34 1.68 14 5 15 54 33 21 29 18 25 3
2 x - Real Salt Lake 56 34 1.65 16 10 8 57 41 16 31 15 26 1
3 x - LA Galaxy 53 34 1.56 15 11 8 53 38 15 32 24 21 -9
4 x - Seattle Sounders FC 52 34 1.53 15 12 7 42 42 0 29 14 13 -14
5 x - Colorado Rapids 51 34 1.5 14 11 9 45 38 7 30 14 15 -7
6 San Jose Earthquakes 51 34 1.5 14 11 9 35 42 -7 23 10 12 -17
7 Vancouver Whitecaps 48 34 1.41 13 12 9 53 45 8 32 13 21 -5
8 FC Dallas 44 34 1.29 11 12 11 48 52 -4 29 7 19 -11
9 Chivas USA 26 34 0.76 6 20 8 30 67 -37 17 -12 13 -25

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