The LA Galaxy look to roll to 2-0 against a rebuilding Colorado side. Colorado, despite being pretty terrible the last couple of years, shouldn’t be totally ignored. For one, they’re at home and play at a severe altitude. More on that below. Secondly, the Rapids are trying to scrounge up a squad of young talents and older vets and barely lost to the ‘Quakes last week. First, the details:
LA Galaxy at Colorado Rapids
March 12, 7:00pm EST (4:00pm PST)
Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, Commerce, Colorado
Everyone in LA has asthma
The Galaxy coach Bruce Arena and quite a few players expressed their displeasure in the TERRIBLE natural conditions of air in Colorado this week. Granted, playing in altitude is more difficult than playing at sea level, but so is breathing through your nose when you’ve been doing it through your mouth for 30 years. Arena gave some reporters a bit of sass about the whole situation:
“What would your suggestion be?…Put them in a chamber or something? I’m sure that works. We could move to Denver and not have to worry about it. Just travel here for games; we would be fine…We’re going to think about relocating.”
Someone’s cranky. Supposedly this was all good natured ribbing but I’m not buying it. Arena, who somewhat has the general look of a potato in a wig, would definitely rather not be worrying about this.
“ppppppotato” – spit out the spud, Arena
Arena wasn’t the only one to complain apparently, and I like the directness of Mike F’n Magee’s quote: “Colorado kind of sucks playing there.” For his part though, he’s Mike Magee so he can say whatever he wants after last week’s performance. Nigel de Jong searched for a while but couldn’t find any f*cks to give about it at all and Ashley Cole was like “I’m late for tea” so at least the internationals aren’t giving any premeditated excuses. Either way, doesn’t seem like the Galaxy are taking it too seriously.
Rapids trying so hard it’s adorable
We’ve talked about it several times already, but the only chance Colorado had of turning around this season was to make some moves. Well they’re trying their best, OK? Their two highest profile pickups were Shkelzen Gashi from FC Basel and Jermaine Jones from that messy situation in New England. They also snagged Eric Miller, defender, from the Montreal Impact.
Shkelzen is a goal machine who led the league in scoring the last two years in Switzerland. He’s expected to do big things on the left wing and is looked at as a longer term solution. This is a move I like. Miller is 23, a former first round pick, and is a solid left defender. This is a move I can shimmy to.
Jones, who is getting up there in years, has a lot to prove and his fiery attitude and creativity in midfield could be a help to the struggling Rapids. But he’ll help probably only in the short term if at all. Again, he’s aging, he’s kind of all over the place usually so you need guys on the pitch who understand him, and he’s serving a six game suspension. Sound like the kind of guy you’d give up a first round 2017 Super draft pick and some General Allocation Money? The guy likes to talk, and I won’t get too into it, but he really wants to prove that he’s not old. Granted, he’s only 34 which in human years is only half-way to rolling around Wal-Mart in a Jazzy motorized wheel chair with your ding-a-ling out and you don’t even know it, but this is professional sports. Regardless, Jones does not think he’s in the jazzy yet. He’s still bad-girl JeJo.
On if he plans on taking a leadership role with the young Rapids team …
Yeah, I do this on almost every team that I go. I always like to take the role of the bad guy on the field.
What to watch for
Gashi vs Robbie Rogers: Rogers, who has played left back for basically his entire career, was moved to right back to accomodate the incoming Ashley Cole. Apparently, it hasn’t been that easy for him, and with Gashi wanting to make a mark he’s going to have his hands full. The help from the center will be crucial.
The trio of De Jong, Cole, and Van Damme: These guys sound like a Dutch Folk band and all of their hit songs are about kicking things. Th band is back together and it will be interesting to see how they work together now that the regular season is underway. Van Damme, who prefers the left side, should be getting the start which will move Steres to the bench and DeLaGarza to the right. Too bad for Steres though, because he looked sharp against DC.
Brian Rowe in net for Dan Kennedy: Kennedy, the starter and MLS vet, came out injured last week and Rowe came in and did a fine job. He’s young but has a bit of match experience and should be OK but it’ll be interesting to see how he handles communicating to all these vets in front of him. Side note, this is the worst headline I’ve ever read: Rowe-dy To Go: Brian Rowe ready to step up in place of the injured Dan Kennedy. Thanks, MLS.
Mike F’n Magee vs Eric Miller: Magee had an unbelievable game last week, scoring 2 goals, assisting another, and drawing a penalty for another which Keane burried. He did this all in the second half. With Dos Santos injured I can’t fathom Magee, who is an MLS former MVP, not getting the start. If he’s out there I expect big things against the young Miller.
HotFooty prediction: Rapids 1-3 Galaxy
I expect a Galaxy win but I don’t think it will be all easy peasy with some shakeups in the back four for LAG. I’m calling a Gashi goal beating Rogers off the dribble and burying one.