So you might have heard that earlier tonight, the Los Angeles Galaxy played the New York Red Bulls at Giants Stadium, in front of 23,000+ mostly interested fans.
Some argued that the Beckham Buzz was gone. It’s a valid question. But how else would 23,000 people come out to see a Red Bulls game this season, unless they were giving away free houses?
As one might have been able to imagine, Los Angeles steamrolled New York, getting a goal from Alecko Eskandarian early, then another from Landon Donovan, before Eddie Lewis added the obligatory just-before-halftime goal to finish off New York.
After an Angel penalty late on cut the final margin to 3-1, the Galaxy were whistled for yet another one, and in one last moment of comedy for New York, Angel’s spot kick hit keeper Donovan Ricketts, hit the post, and bounced right back into Ricketts’ waiting arms.
The second half was a throwaway for the Galaxy. They didn’t attack nearly with the ferocity they did in the first, and the game had none of the pace that was featured in the opening 45 minutes. Beckham left about halfway through to cheers and boos, both of which he seemed to welcome with applause toward the fans.
Certainly, with Beckham, Donovan, Edson Buddle, etc., the Galaxy did prove they could be dangerous in the attack. And that’s probably not a surprise to anyone. For all that Beckham has taken since his little diversion to Milan, he does still have skills and he will have an effect on the team. That, combined with strong form from Donovan, gives Los Angeles a chance to be, well, maybe, decent.
What we can’t judge tonight is anything regarding Los Angeles’ playoff chances. Their defense is still a question mark to me, and you can’t take anything away from tonight, where New York got nothing from the run of play except two handballs. The Galaxy will face far more firepower against other teams and then we will have a better answer about what the future holds.
I’m sure the offense LA showed in the first half tonight will be taken by some as a sign of grand things to come. And who knows, maybe they’ll end up being right. But due to the poor nature of the opposition, it’s probably unwise to take much out of tonight’s result other than what we already knew, Beckham or no Beckham … the Galaxy are better than the Red Bulls.
Everybody in the league is better than the Red Bulls. At 2-14-4, the club has managed to win just 10% of its matches this season, having compiled just 10 points in the standings. They are on pace for just 15 points for the season, and I’m really at this point just waiting for their players to get into a brawl with themselves during a game and for the club to start signing players from the California Penal First Division.
Let me ask ya this … If you were only successful in your job 10% of the time, would you still be employed?
That’s what the Galaxy and Beckham were facing tonight. The truth is, they could have put Beckham, Donovan and Lewis out there with seven blind king crabs and still won 2-1. More of the body of work needs still to be seen before knowing for sure if the Galaxy are back to being a Western contender, and if Beckham’s latest stint with the club will be a successful one.