Friday, April 13, 2007

FC Dallas 2-1 LA Galaxy - Recap

What a night for FC Dallas. They were outplayed for the majority of the 90-minutes yet they are still leaving LA with a full 3 points. If you are a Galaxy fan, you have to wonder if your team is about to repeat 2006 and dig themselves into an early hole.

So what happened? A simple question that can be answered with another question; where was Donovan? LA is only a threat against decent teams when Donovan is a threat and he was not a threat last night. After the first 15-minutes, he disappeared. He wasn't finding space, making passes or in anyway guiding the team. His only contribution was to waste set pieces with poor crosses. Others tried to cover but when the heart isn't working, there is trouble everywhere.

Okay, Landon did get one good cross in, which resulted in the Robbie Findley goal, but that really was his only decent cross of the night. When you take 11 corners and almost 10 free kicks and only have one good cross, you've got a problem.

But I can't just pick on one person because it was the entire Galaxy team that was failing to finish. They played a huge portion of the match in Dallas's final third but they only managed four shots out of 15 attempts on goal, that's just unacceptable. Shaka Hislop looked much better in goal for Dallas but he was still a little scattered. Had LA got a few more on target, they would have got another goal.

For Dallas, they continued to be very fluid in their attack. The quick counters and smart play by Carlos Ruiz had LA baffled. Throw in a little luck (Ty Harden's misplaced arm) and you have a team that was unstoppable.

As sweat as this victory is for Dallas, there is some bad to come out of it as midfielder Marcelo Saragosa went out with an injury in the 25'. Saragosa is an important part of their midfield as shown last night. Once he was out, LA had almost exclusive control of the center for the next 40-minutes. FCD got away with one last night but if they continued to lose it in the middle, they will have a difficult season ahead of them.

But enough about the game, let's talk about the broadcast. I've got to say that the images looked great. They were not washed out and the camera people did a wonderful job of following the action, but I thought we were going to see more replays. Time and time again there were no replays for things like offsides, missed shots and other such events.

I've got to hand it to O'Brien and Co. as they were actually talking about the action on the pitch whenever the ball got near goal that is except for the Kenny Cooper interview. Right after Cooper came out, they cut away to interview him, but were still showing the play on the field. Well the play that was happening was a horrible clearance by Hislop that ended up at the feet of Donovan inside the penalty box unmarked. A potentially very important moment in the match but what did we hear during this play? Cooper talking about Ruiz's leadership abilities.

Don't get me wrong, I like sideline interviews but someone has got to cut the sideline mics and go back to the announcers when these plays happen. Don't worry Cooper will still be there when it's over.

Finally, okay we get it David Beckham is coming to MLS. I started counting how many times the word 'Beckham' was used during the broadcast but stopped when I hit 26 by the 20th minute of play (I included pre-game in my little game). Yes, it is huge, so huge that MLS is trying to make it sound like first 11 years of the league were nothing, but enough already. There is such a thing as over hyping and with 3 more months till his first game, you are bound to hit that point soon.

As far as predictions, both the wife and I went with LA so we now stand at 1-6 for the season. Just pathetic.

FC Dallas 2-1 LA Galaxy
Goals: FCD: Carlos Ruiz (pk) 35', Kenny Cooper 43'
LA: Robbie Findley 86'

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Anonymous Laurie said...

Sigh. This was not LA's finest hour. Or hour-and-a-half. Although they actually put in a fantastic ten or so minutes after the Findley goal. If that team had shown up for the rest of the game, we woulda been in business.

And I agree completely with you about the constant Beckham commentary. This endless speculation, over and over, about how he'll affect the team is counterproductive and has to make the current players feel unsettled and undervalued.

And yes!yes!yes! about the during-the-game sideline interviews! I'm trying SO hard to overcome my Eurosnobbery, but seriously, you'd NEVER see this in a European game. (And for good reason.)

10:00 AM  
Blogger Mike H said...


The final 10-minutes were something. I was shocked that LA didn't find net again. By the way, I really like what I've seen out of Findley so far. He has quality written all over him.

If being a Eurosnob is wanting the announcers to call the major plays of the game, then count me in that camp.

11:58 AM  

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