Preview: LA, Chivas prep for SuperClasico grudge match

The Goats will look for second win of the season vs LA & three points to get closer to Playoffs

SuperClasico Preview

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CHIVAS USA vs LA GALAXY

THE HOME DEPOT CENTER, Carson, Calif.

August 12, 2012 (WEEK 23, MLS Game #222)

11 pm ET / 8 pm PT (ESPN2/Deportes; GolTV)

Chivas USA and the LA Galaxy will meet in the third SuperClásico of the 2012 season when the Home Depot Center-based clubs face off Sunday evening in front of an ESPN2 audience. The teams are separated by six points in the Western Conference standings coming into the week, with the Galaxy holding onto fifth place and the last playoff place ahead of their in-stadium rivals. Chivas return to action after a win in Portland two weeks ago, while the Galaxy are coming off a 4-0 loss in Seattle last weekend.

REFEREE: Jair Marrufo. AR1 (bench): Eric Boria; AR2 (opposite): Corey Rockwell; 4th: Jesus Cisneros

MLS Career: 138 games; FC/gm: 24.2; Y/gm: 3.2; R: 32; pens: 44

DOWNLOAD FULL GAME GUIDE HERE (PDF)

INJURY REPORT:

  • CHIVAS USA – OUT: MF Marvin Iraheta (L knee ACL); DOUBTFUL: MF Ryan Smith (R hamstring strain); QUESTIONABLE: MF Peter Vagenas (R hamstring strain); PROBABLE: MF Oswaldo Minda (L shoulder)
  • LA GALAXY – OUT: FW Edson Buddle (R knee surgery); DF Leonardo (R knee inflammation); QUESTIONABLE: MF Kyle Nakazawa (back spasms)

INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: none

SUSPENDED: none

WARNINGS:

  • SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: none
  • SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: CHV: Shalrie Joseph, Ryan Smith … LA: David Beckham, A.J. DeLaGarza, David Junior Lopes

HEAD-TO-HEAD

ALL-TIME (24 meetings): Chivas USA 4 wins, 20 goals … Galaxy 15 wins, 37 goals … Ties 5

AS CHIVAS HOME GAME (11 meetings): Chivas USA 2 wins, 9 goals … Galaxy 6 wins, 12 goals … Ties 3

2012 (MLS)

5/19: CHV 1, LA 0 (Correa 70)

7/21: LA 3, CHV 1 (Keane 14; Donovan 48, 78 – Cardozo 52)

• The teams are meeting for the second time in four weeks, after a pair of goals from Landon Donovan and one from Robbie Keane gave the Galaxy a 3-1 win on July 21.

• When Chivas USA defeated the Galaxy 1-0 on May 19, on a José Erick Correa goal, it snapped an 11-game winless run in SuperClásicos and was their first victory against the Galaxy since Aug. 23, 2007 (six games).

• With the trade of David Junior Lopes from Chivas USA to the Galaxy for Paolo Cardozo, two more players have the opportunity to play on both sides of the SuperClásico. Nine players have played in games for both clubs in the Home Depot Center rivalry: Juan Pablo Ángel (LA 2011; CHV 2011); Tristan Bowen (LA 2009-10; CHV 2011); Alecko Eskandarian (CHV 2008-09; LA 2009); Alan Gordon (LA 2004-10; CHV 2010-11); Ante Jazic (LA 2006-08; CHV 2009-11); Mike Munoz (CHV 2005; LA 2008); Paulo Nagamura (LA 2005-06; CHV 2007-11); Marcelo Saragosa (LA 2004-06; CHV 2009-10); Michael Umana (LA 2005; CHV 2010)

• Coaches record: Robin Fraser v LA: P4 W1 L3 D0 … Bruce Arena vs. CHV: P11 W7 L3 D1

LAST MEETING (MLS)

• The Galaxy took the lead in the 14th minute. Robbie Keane ran onto a through ball from David Beckham past the Chivas backline and slotted past goalkeeper Dan Kennedy.

• Three minutes into the second half, the Galaxy doubled their advantage. Landon Donovan took a pass from Keane, sped past the Chivas defense and fired past Kennedy from the left side of the area.

• In the 52nd minute, Paolo Cardozo punished his former team when he rifled a shot from the top of the box and past LA 'keeper Josh Saunders.

• But the Galaxy restored the final margin in the 78th minute when Donovan turned and home from very close range after a corner kick was headed on in the goalmouth scramble.

• LA GALAXY (4-4-2): Josh Saunders - Sean Franklin, David Junior Lopes, A.J. DeLaGarza, Bryan Gaul - Hector Jimenez (Omar Gonzalez  68), Juninho, David Beckham, Marcelo Sarvas (Michael Stephens 81) - Landon Donovan, Robbie Keane.

• CHIVAS USA (4-2-3-1): Dan Kennedy - James Riley, Rauwshan McKenzie, Danny Califf, Ante Jazic - Ben Zemanski, Nick LaBrocca - Blair Gavin (Paolo Cardozo 46), Miller Bolanos, Ryan Smith (Juan Pablo Angel 57) - Jose Correa.

CHIVAS USA

Chivas USA return to league play following a weekend off, their last match a 1-0 victory against the Portland Timbers on July 28 at JELD-WEN Field. Chivas USA are in sixth place in the Western Conference with 26 points from 20 games.

LAST MATCH

HIGHLIGHTS: POR 0, CHV 1

• The game's only goal came in the 68th minute. Chivas USA's Ben Zemanski flighted in a free kick from out on the left, and Danny Califf reached it first to head it past Portland goalkeeper Troy Perkins for the eventual winner.

• Danny Califf scored his first goal of the season, playing in his 10th consecutive match with the club after he was acquired from Philadelphia Union.

• “It’s fantastic," said Califf. "The couple times I’ve been here before have not turned out very well at all for me, so it was great to come out tonight and get on the score sheet. It’s been a while, the first game [I have scored in] since last year, so it feels great to come in, in a really difficult place to play and be able to get three points.”

• Chivas USA head coach Robin Fraser made four changes to the team that fell 3-1 to the LA Galaxy at The Home Depot Center. John Valencia came into the back four for Rauwshan McKenzie, Paolo Cardozo and Cesar Romero started in midfield for Ryan Smith and the departed Blair Gavin, and Juan Pablo Angel came in up top for Jose Correa.

• CHIVAS USA (4-2-3-1): Dan Kennedy - James Riley, John Valencia, Danny Califf, Ante Jazic - Ben Zemanski, Nick LaBrocca - Miller Bolanos, Paolo Cardozo (Alejandro Moreno 76), Cesar Romero (Juan Agudelo 61) - Juan Pablo Angel (Casey Townsend 79).

TEAM NEWS

• The victory was the first away from The Home Depot Center since a 1-0 win at Toronto FC on April 14. Chivas USA had drawn three of their previous five away matches in their winless run.

• “I think you always have to or want to play a certain style and play in a certain manner,” said head coach Robin Fraser. “We had moments where we did OK, but for the most part we didn’t connect as well as we needed to, we didn’t keep the ball in certain areas of the field where we needed to, and at the end it just became a bit of a street fight for us. To the players’ credit, they really hung in there and fought.”

• It was a fourth shutout in the last five games for Chivas USA – after keeping a clean sheet just three times in the first 15 league games this season.

WATCH: SuperClasico press conference

• “Dan [Kennedy] has been very good all year,” Fraser said. “Obviously he made the All-Star team because of it. He’s playing with a lot of confidence, and I’ve been saying this all year. As you’re building your team you need to make sure you stay in games, and as you’re building your style of play, you need to make sure you stay in games, and certainly Dan’s done a great job of allowing us to do that.”

• Since the last match, Chivas USA made a stunning acquisition, picking up Shalrie Joseph in a trade with the New England Revolution in exchange for midfielder Blair Gavin.

• “It's a work in progress to build a team,” Fraser said. “As you grow and you maybe accomplish this, [there are things that] could maybe be tweaked to make us a little sharper and a little better. I just think in terms of putting together a complete team, [acquiring] a player like Shalrie [Joseph] is something that will move us closer in that direction.”

• “Once I know that, then I can go in there and do my job,” Joseph said, “which is playing, working hard, being a leader, making sure everyone comes into practice ready to work hard every day and be ready to play on the weekend.”

• After four games out of the lineup after suffering an injury in training in mid-July, Ecuadorian midfielder Oswaldo Minda could be ready to return to the team.

• “I’ve recovered all of my mobility in my arm, my shoulder and I feel strong because I’ve worked on regaining the strength there over the last three weeks,” Minda said. “Hopefully by Thursday, I will be able to train and then we’ll see how I feel, to see if I’m ready to play or if I still need some more time to recover.

LA GALAXY

The LA Galaxy saw their five-game undefeated streak come to an end, falling 4-0 to Seattle Sounders FC on Sunday evening at CenturyLink Field. The Galaxy are in fifth place in the Western Conference with 33 points from 24 games.

LAST MATCH

HIGHLIGHTS: SEA 4, LA 0

• Sounders FC opened the scoring in the sixth minute. Once again, Mauro Rosales was the one providing service for Eddie Johnson, sending in a cross from about 30 yards that allowed Johnson to hit a glancing header that went just inside the far post.

• The lead was doubled in the 51st minute when Fredy Montero powered home a side-footed volley off a rebound from an Alex Caskey shot.

• Caskey then got one of his own when he was able to catch Saunders far off his line from about 35 yards out, after the Galaxy goalkeeper made a hurried clearance near the edge of the penalty area under pressure from Johnson.

• The rout was complete in the 88th minute. After Marc Burch was freed with a through ball from Rosales, he slid a pass to rookie Andy Rose, who slotted it inside the near post.

• Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena made two changes to the team that recorded a 1-0 win against FC Dallas in Frisco. David Beckham and Landon Donovan returned to the lineup in place of Hector Jimenez andMike Magee.

• LA GALAXY (4-4-2): Josh Saunders - A.J. DeLaGarza, Omar Gonzalez, David Junior Lopes (Jose Villarreal 80), Bryan Gaul - Sean Franklin (Mike Magee 57), Juninho (Hector Jimenez 70), David Beckham, Marcelo Sarvas - Landon Donovan, Robbie Keane.

TEAM NEWS

• The 4-0 loss was the largest margin of defeat suffered by the Galaxy since Bruce Arena took over as head coach in August 2008.

• “Off the post the ball moves in funny ways and we got caught off balance a few times. We didn't have trash today, it took us 84 minutes to get a shot on goal,” said Arena. “We had a bunch of possessions and we were very poor on executing in the final third of the field. Couldn't get a good cross in, didn't have guys in front of the goal. We didn't do a lot of things right.”

• Said A.J. DeLaGarza: “Anything good [to take out of it]? Absolutely not. Sometimes there are [losses] you take something out of it, but to lose, 4-0 – on goals where we're not marked in, not all together on the same page – that's troublesome.”

• It was the second time this season the Galaxy have allowed four goals, also conceding that many in a 4-3 loss at San Jose on June 30.

• “I think a lot of us got tired after the second goal. Mentally and physically, we hit a wall,” said DeLaGarza. “We weren't making five-yard passes that we should be able to make because of our legs, whatever it was, or our minds. We never want to finish a game like that, giving up four goals.”

• The Galaxy were also shutout in a game for the first time since May 19 – the first SuperClásico of the season – the fourth of 11 offensive shutouts at the start of the league campaign.

• “We didn't play well. We didn't put in the right crosses, we didn't get into positions where we could score goals,” said David Beckham. “We passed the ball well, we kept the ball well at times but we just didn't put enough together to create enough chances.”

• With the return of Landon Donovan and Beckham to the team, the Galaxy returned to the group that recorded the 3-1 win against Chivas in the second SuperClásico, with the exception of Omar Gonzalez maintaining his place instead of Hector Jimenez.

• “It's hard to pick apart what went wrong but we were just a little flat all over the field, a little slow,” said Donovan. “Our thought process wasn't quick enough, and we didn't react well enough defensively so it was just an all-around bad performance.”

• A year ago, the Galaxy lost 3-0 in Portland on August 3 – and reeled off six wins and a draw in their next seven matches.

• “We turned things around last year after [Portland and] it lit a fire under us,” DeLaGarza said. “We need the same response. Last year, we were in first place. This year, we're in fifth. If this doesn't [light] a fire under us, I don't know what will.”