In tournaments as prestigious as the CONCACAF Champions League, you need to have great players in order to be a contender for a ticket to the FIFA Club World Cup.
Mar 13, 2013; Carson, CA, USA; Los Angeles Galaxy forward Robbie Keane (7) walks off the field after the game against C.S. Herediano at the Home Depot Center. The Los Angeles Galaxy defeated C.S. Herediano 4-1. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports
Forward Robbie Keane, the captain of Bruce Arena’s Los Angeles Galaxy, is a player that wants his team excel in the CCL. Leadership, on-field IQ, football IQ, skills and class are what makes Keane an invaluable part of the Galaxy and they were on display once again in LA’s 4-1 victory over Club Sport Herediano at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif.
Take a look at the Opta Chalkboard and see for yourself, viewers on the View from Avalon and the Fansided Network. In terms of distribution, Keane only had a 73 percent pass success rate but it was countered with three through balls, four lay offs, two headers, a successful cross and two key passes.
Keane was token defensively, with just one tackle won, and interception and two recoveries. In terms of set pieces, Keane had three short corners and two successful throw-ins.
But what Robbie Keane really dominated in was his ball movement, off-the-ball movement and finishing. Once again, Keane made use of his Premier League pedigree and national team experience by generating space and getting open numerous times.
In the 83rd minute, his tenacity and skills were rewarded. A sensational sequence that involved Michael Stephens and Sean Franklin culminated in a goal that effectively put the game out of reach, even though Herediano would score two minutes later.
Keane has taken on some of the finest teams in world football during his long career. And even though Herediano is nowhere close to the level of teams like Manchester United, Manchester City, Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur, Robbie Keane single-handedly schooled the Herediano back line of Marvin Obando, Cristian Montero, captain Pablo Salazar and Waylon Francis, who also had a solid outing and should be considered as a player fit for MLS.
Not very often do teams like El Team face a player as high-profile as this, so even though Herediano exit this tournament, they do so knowing that they lost to one of the best teams in Major League Soccer, captained by one of the most accomplished footballers from the Republic of Ireland in Robbie Keane.
Will this be enough for the Galaxy to topple Monterrey, even with Landon Donovan returning? That has yet to be seen, but in the meantime, Chivas USA are on notice come St. Patrick’s Day.