On Thursday night, the LA Galaxy play the Houston Dynamo with both teams looking for their first victory in the MLS is Back Tournament. Here are three things to watch for.
Prior to meeting one another on Thursday night, the Los Angeles Galaxy and Houston Dynamo have combined to earn one point through their two games. It’s been a disappointing tournament for both as they have been soundly outperformed by Los Angeles FC and the Portland Timbers in what many considered to the be the toughest group in the MLS is Back Tournament.
Both Tab Ramos and Guillermo Barros Schelotto are searching for answers on how to improve their teams, while qualification for the knockout stages is still possible but requires a victory for either.
With both still looking for their first win, here are three things to watch for.
3. Where do the LA Galaxy go from here?
The latest instalment of El Trafico was embarrassing, humbling, and a real eye-opener to the gulf in class between the two Los Angeles clubs. The typically wild affair was going fairly well for the LA Galaxy. They went into half-time tied at 2-2 and were extremely threatening when attacking. Then, disaster. Four second-half goals and a 6-2 beatdown.
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No Javier Hernandez hurts, but there is no excuse for things spiraling out of control in the way they did. Via the LA Times, head coach Guillermo Barros Schelotto said as much after the game:
“I question myself: Why we give up after 70 minutes? That is the first thing we need to ask. It can’t happen again. Every player has to be ready to go 90 minutes. When you give up, it’s bad for the team, for the result, for everything.”
The Galaxy have conceded the most goals in the tournament with eight, meaning they would have to win by a large margin to make up for their horrendous goal differential. Should they win, it would be their first of the season going back before the pandemic.