by Charles Therrell (DISK DOKTOR), Oakland, CA, 8 April, 2015
Greetings, Faithful. There is no worse hatred felt than for those that repeatedly thwart you on your path to greatness. Los Angeles have thrice put Seattle out of the MLS Cup. The competition that Los Angeles have won five times, and that we have yet to win. They have won the League four times, and we have only won it once (last year). There can be no better description of the relationship between Seattle Sounders FC and Los Angeles Galaxy, than extreme contentiousness. In layman’s terms: They hate each other, passionately, and often without reserve. On 12 April, 2015, Seattle travel to Avalon Boulevard, Carson, California for a Sunday showdown fixture with the Los Angeles Galaxy. Saints preserve us all.
The Good News
There is actually not so much of this. Seattle are in the process of mending their form, having won three of their last six in the league (3-1-2). The Galaxy have indifferent form at 2-2-2, and have lost their last two matches. The return of Dempesy, Alonso, and Martins from injury have Sounders at full strength.
The Bad News
There is lots of this. In the last five meetings Seattle are 2-1-2 against L.A. In their entire history playing against L.A., Seattle are a mournful 3-5-6. That’s right, we only won three times in 14 matches played. We’ve scored 12 goals on L.A. whilst they have belted 21 past us. L.A. goalkeeper, Jaime Penedo has 100 caps for Panama, a side that seems more competitive (also see: prolific play acting and time wasting) in CONCACAF with each passing tournament cycle. Leo Gonzalez is purportedly out with a hip flexor, but his status is indeterminate for Sunday’s match. If the injury report is to be believed, and it usually isn’t, L.A. have five players on injury list. The reality is that only goalkeeper, Brian Perk is certainly out for the year with a fractured ankle. The others are squad players, except for Väyrynen whom I expect to see in the side on Sunday. Robbie Keane (Republic of Ireland and Los Angeles) has scored a total of four goals against Seattle (This includes the hat-trick that firmly fixed the hatred of the Faithful upon him). Juninho has hit three, and Omar Gonzalez (Not to be confused with our Leo) has hit two. Amongst our active players, our top scorers against L.A. are Dempsey and Pappa with two goals each, and Neagle with one goal. A 0:1 result against Houston last week was hardly a dominant performance for a team returned to full health.
I doubt there is one familiar face in the Galaxy squad that ever played for Seattle, and I’m totally fine with that. L.A. defender Todd Dunivant played his university football at Stanford, just down the road from dear Oakland. My favoritism for Cal round football is well known in this club, so this news doesn’t exactly thrill me either.
Although selections haven’t been revealed for the match (Typical), these are the selections for each club for the previous match:
Los Angeles: Penedo, DeLaGarza, Omar Gonzalez, Meyer, Dunivant, Ishizaki, Juninho, Väyrynen, Husidic, Zardes, Keane.
Seattle: Frei, Mears, Evans, Marshall, Remick, Rose, Alonso, Pineda, Neagle, Dempsey, Martins.
The Seattle/L.A. series might be the most heavily disciplined in all of MLS history. In 14 MLS league matches, Sounders players have been booked 29 times, and sent off four times. L.A. players have been booked 25 times, and sent off three times. In only 14 matches! Fasten that seatbelt, Grandpa! This is likely to be a wooly one.