Galaxy-Chivas USA Preview


Winless in the early going in MLS play, the Los Angeles Galaxy will next face a team they've dominated in recent seasons, in-stadium rival Chivas USA.

The Galaxy seek their 12th win in the last 15 SuperClasico matchups and look to extend Chivas' winless streak to four Sunday.

Los Angeles (0-1-1) has played two games against defending Western Conference champion Real Salt Lake, falling 1-0 at home March 8 and playing to a 1-all draw in Utah on March 22 as Robbie Keane scored the tying goal in the 34th minute.

In between those games, Los Angeles was beaten in its CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal series with Club Tijuana. The Galaxy won 1-0 in the opening leg at the StubHub Center on March 12 but fell 4-2 in Mexico six days later.

The club has had plenty of time to reflect on those results and recharge.

"It feels like it's been a month since the last game," Keane said. "It's been a good couple of weeks. The training has been intense. We have a good level of fitness. There are no excuses. We feel good. I think everyone now is just looking forward to the game."

Los Angeles is likely savoring the chance to face Chivas after the long break. It's gone 11-1-2 in the last 14 meetings while posting a 25-6 scoring advantage.

The Galaxy have outscored Chivas 11-1 in the last four matchups, winning 5-0 in the most recent one Oct. 6. Keane and Landon Donovan scored two goals apiece.

Los Angeles, though, is hardly taking the meeting lightly as it faces a Chivas club that's playing better under new coach Wilmer Cabrera. Chivas dropped its final five games last season en route to a 6-20-8 finish.

"They're much improved this year," Galaxy defender Todd Dunivant said. "I think they've had a lot of turnover year after year, and that's difficult for an organization. I think they've brought in a lot more MLS-ready guys and that helps."

Chivas earned a 3-2 win over Chicago in its first game under Cabrera, the club's sixth coach in as many seasons, but has gone 0-1-2 since then. It gave up a stoppage-time goal and had to settle for a 1-all road draw with New York on Sunday.

Erick Torres scored a club record-tying fourth goal in as many games on a penalty kick in the 25th minute.

"We're disappointed with giving up a goal in the last minute of the game, the dying seconds really," goalkeeper Dan Kennedy said. "Compared to our performance (in a 3-1 loss at FC Dallas on March 22), we took some really big steps forward. That's what we need to keep in mind as we continue to build this team."

The Galaxy have a little less depth on their back line with James Riley out at least six months after left knee surgery and A.J. DeLaGarza still dealing with an ankle injury suffered in the RSL game.