Donovan ties MLS assist record as Galaxy blow away Chivas USA in ‘SuperClasico’

LandonDonovanLA (ISIPhotos.com)

Photo by ISIPhotos.com

By KAYLA KNAPP

CARSON, Calif. – The LA Galaxy bounced back from their 4-0 loss to the Seattle Sounders in a big way on Sunday night. LA scored four goals of their own against Chivas USA, with Landon Donovan assisting all of them, tying the MLS record for assists in a single game, as the Galaxy downed their Home Depot Center neighbors, 4-0.

Chivas USA goalkeeper Dan Kennedy made some jaw-dropping saves early in the match, but even he couldn't stop a Galaxy attack that was firing on all cylinders, with Donovan setting up all four goals. He set up a Robbie Keane goal before delivering assists on a pair of Juninho goals. Donovan capped his amazing evening with a corner kick assist on an Omar Gonzalez header goal.

That assist moved Donovan into 4th place all-time in MLS, with a total of 105, passing Jaime Moreno. It was also a single-game career high for the Galaxy captain, who has a league-leading 11 assists in 2012.

“In my opinion, he’s the best player that has played in this league,” Donovan said of Moreno. “I’m honored to be mentioned in that company and I’m just doing my job and if I can get more then that’s great.”

Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena was full of praise for Donovan’s performance on Sunday, placing him on the same level as Moreno, both on and off the field.

“Jaime was one of the great players in the history of this league,” Arena said. “And a great person and I’d say the same with Landon. Landon really was focused on playing well tonight, and when he wants, he’s as good as any player in this league.”

Sunday's win also marked the first time the Galaxy's starting back four from last season played together in 2012. The combination of Todd Dunivant, AJ DeLaGarza, Omar Gonzalez and Sean Franklin quickly found their chemistry, looking like the Galaxy defense that carried the reigning MLS Champions last season.

“It felt great to have the old back line and you could just tell that we all played with confidence,” Gonzalez said after the match. “Everyone was just on and it finally felt like last year, where everyone was playing from the goalkeeper up to the forward, everyone was on and it was just a great game for us.”

The blowout loss put a dent in Chivas USA's hopes of closing the gap on the playoff spots in the Western Conference, and the Galaxy's blowout victory raised some questions about the Goats and their chances of fighting their way back into the race.

“That’s embarrassing for the magnitude of this game to have the result fall the way it did is certainly not good enough,” Chivas USA head coach Robin Fraser said post-game.

The Galaxy must know turn their sights to Wednesday’s game against the Columbus Crew. They will have to do so without Donovan, who has been called up to play for the US men’s national team in a friendly against Mexico.

They will, however, have David Beckham back. He was absent from Sunday’s match because of duties overseas at the Olympic closing ceremonies.

Chivas have a week to figure things out, and find a way to get points on Saturday against the Colorado Rapids.

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17 Responses to Donovan ties MLS assist record as Galaxy blow away Chivas USA in ‘SuperClasico’

  1. Old School says:

    When Donovan is focused: this happens.

    Hope this carries over to Wednesday as I only see Alan Gordon scoring 4 goals. As it stands, I think we’ll need 5 total to pull out a victory in Smogico City.

  2. b says:

    I just saw the Mmexico roster and I can’t believe Donovan got called in again, doesn’t Klinsmann know that he’s finished…

  3. ET says:

    What?your an idiot.

  4. john says:

    What?your a guy who doesn’t understand sarcasm or how to spell “you’re”.

  5. Steve C says:

    “You’re a guy….”

    Fail.

  6. Nave says:

    “When Donovan is focused”

    That pretty much says it all. It wouldn’t be surprising at all if the Galaxy lost their next game 4-0 and Donovan was invisible.

  7. Nicole says:

    Oh, Donovan will be “invisible” all right.

    The Galaxy play Columbus on Wednesday.

  8. Gnarls says:

    Juninho needs more games like last night. He’s been a very good defensive mid, but when he attacks big things can happen.

  9. Gnarls says:

    What does that mean?

  10. Nik says:

    Really dissapointed with fan turnout. I went to a Chivas game earlier this year and could not have had a better time. My family was doing the Disney World trip and We decided to check out chivas vs impact. The staff and atmosphere was tremedous. Attendence, not so much, like 8000. I don’t know what Chivas has to do to increase their attendance numbers. If you have to close down sections of the stadium when you are playing your cross town rival, then it’s time to move.

  11. Ian says:

    Chivas lack an identity. That’s their biggest problem as it pertains to gaining and retaining a fanbase. They’re under-achieving newcomers in a city that already had a mostly-good team for 10 years. Add to that the fact they’re named after another (much better) team in Mexico and they’re really left adrift without a unique identity.

    Perhaps they’d draw more positive attention if they were rebranded with a unique team name, moved to their own stadium and actually strung together a few decent seasons. I know San Diego would welcome them with open arms. That way the Galaxy-Chivas “rivalry” wouldn’t disappear; hopefully it’d grow.

  12. beachbum says:

    backline looked way better for the Galaxy and Chivas’ defense lacked the intensity the Galaxy’s had, particularly in midfield; still had to scramble a couple of times to preserve the clean sheet but that group played better than what the Galaxy have been trotting out. we’ll see if they can back it up Wednesday evening with a similar effort and result

    Kennedy was downright spectacular though the 4-0 line appears to reveal otherwise. STUD

  13. Old School says:

    it means Donovan will be with the Nats on Wednesday and not the Galaxy.

    Therefore….invisible =P

  14. b says:

    Or a reference to the comment it’s making fun of, right down to not capitalizing the y?

  15. b says:

    SIMPLE:

    1. Build their own SSS in another part of the LA metropolitan area and don’t be cheap about it.

    2. Rebrand as Los Angeles Aztecs or Club Deportivo Los Angeles or anything else that has Los Angeles but NOT Chivas in the name, with a brand new logo.

  16. MDP says:

    Pretty simple actually. As Ian points out, CDCUSA has an identity problem. Most Guadalajara fans could care less about them.

    Other FMF fans wouldn’t go to their games since there is no way they would support anything Chivas.

    Many white people would be uncomfortable at a CDCUSA match since it is so heavily targeted at a Hispanic market.

    So, they’re not getting the Guadalajara fans, their not getting the other FMF fans, and they’re limited on the number of white folks due to cultural discomfort.

    That untapped Asian population is probably more interested in Beckham… so who’s left?

    They’re going to have to rebrand and move if they want to survive as a franchise.

  17. hogatroge says:

    He’s clearly pumped for the Mexico friendly.