On September 1, the Los Angeles Galaxy continued their dominance over the Vancouver Whitecaps at the Home Depot Center. Goals from Juninho and David Beckham gave the Galaxy their second consecutive victory in the regular season. Here are my thoughts on the match.
Juninho on Fire
This is quickly becoming Juninho's best season with the Galaxy. In the 41st minute, Juninho netted a shot from 28 yards out. It sailed into the top corner. Robbie Keane and Hector Jimenez both earned assists on the goal. I'm guessing Juninho's wonder strike is likely to be on the Goal of the Week ballot. The Brazilian midfielder has scored goals in the last two games along with a brace against Chivas USA on August 12. In addition he scored another brace in the CCL game against Isidro Metapan.
Beckham's Free Kick Dooms 'Caps
In the 79th minute, after Robbie Keane drew a foul, Beckham took a free kick from 25-yards-out. As the ball curled into the upper-left corner, 'Caps keeper Brad Knighton didn't come close to making the save. This was the English midfielder's fourth goal from a free kick in 2012. Beckham has seven goals and 9 assists for the 2012 regular season.
With only six games left in the regular season, I feel confident that we will make it into the playoffs. FC Dallas only have 32 points and would have to win the majority of their final games to knock us out of playoff contention. Meanwhile, the Whitecaps have 37 points and continue to struggle. Real Salt Lake are just three points ahead of us. The Seattle Sounders have a chance to leapfrog us if they win on Sept. 2 against FC Dallas.
Defense Holding Strong
Along with earning another clean sheet, Los Angeles prevented the Whitecaps from getting any shots on goal. The Galaxy have recorded four shutouts in their last six regular season games. They recorded their first one on June 17th against the Portland Timbers. Overall, they have seven shutouts. Four of those have occurred with Omar Gonzalez in the lineup. Furthermore, with Gonzalez going the full 90, we have only lost one game.
The Galaxy have a nice, long break and will not return to action until September 14 when they play the Colorado Rapids. Hopefully, Landon Donovan will have recovered completely from his hamstring strain.
Melissa Matters is a long time Los Angeles resident and devoted Los Angeles Galaxy fan.
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