Galaxy 4, Dynamo 1: A Look Back

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Photo by Michael Janosz/ISIphotos.com

BY ADAM SERRANO

Jovan Kirovski was the latest Los Angeles Galaxy forward to lead the team to victory as the Galaxy dispatched the Houston Dynamo 4-1 on Saturday at the Home Depot Center. The win extended the club's undefeated streak to 12 games.

The 34-year-old's pair of goals proved decisive against the struggling Dynamo. The veteran opened up the scoring just 47 seconds into the match and added the second goal in the 21st minute. Kirovski linked up well with defender Sean Franklin as the right back assisted on each of the two goals. Delivering pin point service that allowed the veteran to coolly beat Houston goalkeeper Pat Onstad.

"I had some good service tonight and I wanted to score and fortunately I was able to," said Kirovski. "It was just great to play up front and I was excited to get the start and score tonight."

Perhaps what has made the Galaxy's recent run of form so impressive is that it has come with a number of different players playing key roles. A moment of brilliance led to the third goal in the 48th minute as 19-year-old forward Tristan Bowen beat a defender and then Pat Onstad near post to continue his recent hot streak. With the fourth and final goal for the Galaxy, Brazilian Alex Cazumba earned his first career MLS goal in the 56th Minute. With the goal, the Brazilian is the eleventh member of the Galaxy to get on the score sheet this season.

"We've been looking for him to do this since he arrived here, it was great for him to come out of his shell and be a bit more explosive," said Head Coach Bruce Arena. "The story is going to be the play of our young players, but the story behind the scenes has been our veteran guys who have helped the young guys be successful and have contributed all season."

While the Galaxy's offense was dangerous throughout the night, it was a different story for the Houston Dynamo. Houston equalized quickly with a goal in the 8th minute when Cam Weaver collided with Sean Franklin, the collision between the two players put goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts out of position and the ball rolled slowly into the Galaxy net. After the goal, the club struggled to generate offense despite equalizing almost immediately.  Houston clearly wore down in the second half and were unable to match th Galaxy's intensity. For the struggling Dynamo, consensus is that playing a game midweek in New York took its toll on the club.

"It was a tough week on us with all the travel, but we still need to come out and have a bit of pride and do a lot better than we played tonight," said midfielder Brad Davis. "It's exhausting, but you can make a million excuses and it won't stop being a part of the game so we need to deal with it."

In addition to dealing with a buzzing Galaxy offense on the field, Houston also had to deal with a raucous crowd. Although the crowd was mostly peaceful several sections of fans heckled the Dynamo directing a great deal of abuse at forward Brian Ching. The veteran forward was largely ineffective against the Galaxy as he was constantly marked by the young center back Omar Gonzalez. Ching did provide the Dynamo with their best chance to equalize in the 30th minute, but a diving save by Donovan Ricketts prevented Houston from drawing level.

The United States International has suffered through a difficult week after failing to make the United States squad heading to South Africa. The striker admitted that the two week break is coming at the best time for the forward.

"I'm looking forward to getting away for a little bit because its been a couple of rough weeks for me personally, I think it will be good for me to recharge and come back big for the second half," said Ching. "Things aren't easy and I need to put it all behind me, but its been a hard week and I really don't remember the last time this franchise lost three games in a row."

The Dynamo are now off for two weeks while the Galaxy will travel to Utah on Tuesday for a date with the defending champion Real Salt Lake on Wednesday night. Real Salt Lake are currently second to the Galaxy in the Western conference, Wednesday's match will be the last for the league leaders in points before MLS takes its two week break for the World Cup.

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20 Responses to Galaxy 4, Dynamo 1: A Look Back

  1. sread says:

    Seriously, I don’t even know who that guy in the photo is. I thought it was Kirovski who scored the brace.

  2. yankiboy says:

    Bruce Arena’s ressurecting of the LA Galaxy may be even more incredible than his run with DC United.

    Of course, there are many chapters yet to be written. So I am not going to crown him just yet. But c’mon. I know that I am not the only person who thought that he was possibly “past it” or had been possibly “overated” as a club coach after the failure with Red Bull NY.

    In retrospect, the failed NY experiment seems to inciate more about that franchise (previously) than it did Arena (although both were highly dysfunctional at that time).

    Or maybe I am.

  3. BetaMale says:

    This has to be the strongest team in MLS history. With our two best players gone, our team has not skipped a beat and has won all games since Buddle’s and Donovan’s departures. Two away from home as well.

    Once Buddle and Donovan come back, we are going to furiously tear through the Champions League.

  4. sread says:

    I would second that. It’s no longer too early to make that statement and I really hope Buddle and LD are around to blow away some CONCACAF opposition and show the region what a quality MLS side is all about.

  5. Kyle Rote Jr. says:

    me to. this looks like

    a guy on my over 40 league

    team.

  6. Kyle Rote Jr. says:

    me to. this looks like

    a guy on my over 40 league

    team.

  7. yankiboy says:

    The Galaxy is looking unbeatable right now. Props to LA. Big propss.

    Puerto Rico Islanders are in a slump.

    I still wouldn’t bet my mortgage on LA getting past PR. Sleeping on the Islanders could be a huge mistake. If LA does what is expected in the prelim round then I think that it will have a really impressive CCL run.

  8. austin says:

    It was Weaver who scored for Houston, not Waibel

  9. bottlcaps says:

    When you look at all the World Cup and USMNT experience the team has. it makes sense. I groaned every time Bruce Arena signed ANOTHER aging veteran to the team, thinking that the Galaxy will have the oldest team in MLS history. But something happened. The Galaxy made some GREAT draft choices of younger kids, and deftly bought some real hardworking foreign talent. Using the vets like Lewis, Kirovski,Klein, Beckham, Donovan, McGee and especially Berhalter, the vets have mentored the kids, molding them into some great players. Arena brought in THREE young Brazilians on loan and they have been hardworking. They are not spectacular show boaters but they are young and talented and appreciated the opportunity given to them. Should Donovan depart to Europe, like many pundits expect, and the LA also loses Buddle to Europe, which is totally unexpected, the Galaxy will weather the loss. It’s been rumored that the Galaxy will sign another big name designated player should Donovan go. With a great and solid team it will be easier for LA to sign another “big name”!

    I think the MLS wants at least one Marquee team, a team that can stand up to any team in CONCACAF, South America and Europe and the world and give as much as they take, who fear no one, and have the best players afforded.

    That team may be the LA Galaxy!!

  10. beamish says:

    You know, three of your best players are gone.

  11. A Guest says:

    “The 34-year-old pair of goals”

    Whoa. Those are some historical goals.

  12. jake says:

    How doo you write an entire article about a game, mentioning youth players specifically, and not include mention of the rookie who had 3 assists and is now tied for like 3rd in the leauge in that category…?

  13. Charles says:

    You are correct.

    This sucks.

    ps. why do I see the perfect season followed by playoff loss in the first round, with all the playoff haters whining….

  14. Dave Gracie says:

    Excellent point!

  15. BAJ says:

    Lets not forget we also have Cobi Jones on the staff.

  16. TomM says:

    Pretty amazing what Arena and the Galaxy have done. I remember when Kirovski played for our Rapids a number of years ago, and we referred to him as the human traffic cone.

  17. dudeinho says:

    kirovski evil twin!!!!!

  18. wildchild says:

    yeah, he scored 34 years ago, and they’ve just finally registered on the score board!

  19. ThaDeuce says:

    The fans who heckle brian ching for not making the US squad are classless, Like little school children who make fun of the fat girl for being fat.Often in reality, they themselves just have nothing to cheer for, so they make others feel as bad as themselves. However galaxy fans have tons to cheer for, why kick a player who has given so much to his country while he is down? pure slime.

    If he played dirty he would deserve it, but he is actually one of the few players in the sports world who never dive and always gives 100% for club and country…. pure slime.

    I saw some of this when our fans harrassed the czech team in hartford, but brian is one of our own. this is just the bottom of the barrel.

  20. You realize that not all Galaxy fans cheer for the USA, right?