On October 6, the Los Angeles Galaxy had their seven-game, regular season unbeaten streak broken when they lost, 2-1, to Real Salt Lake. In itself, this isn't a huge deal. However, A.J. DeLaGarza's and Landon Donovan's recent injuries might compromise their end of the season momentum. With the postseason just around the corner, it's important for the Galaxy to be confident and healthy.
L.A. played almost two-thirds of the season without Omar Gonzalez. They shuffled around the defensive lineup many times. However, they just couldn't find a back four that consistently won. Once Gonzalez, DeLaGarza, Todd Dunivant and Sean Franklin got back into their rhythm, the Galaxy started winning. DeLaGarza injured himself in the 1-1 draw against the Colorado Rapids on September 30. The center back left the game in the 34th minute. DeLaGarza has a left MCL sprain and is expected to be out for at least a month. Already, without him, our defense doesn't look as organized. Due to a hip pointer, Todd Dunivant also missed the Galaxy-RSL game.
Landon Donovan went down with just ten minutes left in the Oct. 6 match. The Galaxy captain came down on his knee and had to receive medical attention. Although I thought Donovan might miss some future games, he was recently called up to the USMNT for World Cup qualifying matches on Oct. 12 and 16. In addition, he reportedly skipped a scheduled MRI exam on Oct. 8 because his knee felt so much better. I'm glad to hear Donovan's knee appears to be better. However, considering he was already out for close to a month with a hamstring strain, I'm a little worried about him staying healthy for the rest of the season.
Against Real Salt Lake, Bruce Arena used Tommy Meyer in place of A.J. DeLaGarza. Meyer had an average performance. However, at one point in the game, he went to clear the ball and missed. This allowed Alvaro Saborio to take the ball and head to the goal. This sort of sloppy play was a big factor in the defeat. We have Bryan Gaul, David Junior Lopes and Andrew Boyens to step into the defense. However, I don't think any of these players can fill the shoes of DeLaGarza or Dunivant.
Big Games Ahead
We only have two games left in the regular season. However, the San Jose Earthquakes and the Seattle Sounders have been our toughest competition this season. Both teams have defeated us two times. If we play like we did for the first 20 minutes against RSL, we might have a chance to win these final regular season games. If we get sloppy, or lose any more players to injury, we might be doomed to play in the Western Conference knockout round in the postseason.
Melissa Matters is a long time Los Angeles resident and devoted Los Angeles Galaxy fan.
More from Melissa:Fan Reaction: What Does A.J. DeLaGarza's Knee Injury Mean for the Los Angeles Galaxy?
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