Most games are about the final score. But preseason games for the LA Galaxy are about testing out just how well everyone is grasping some difficult concepts.
CARSON, Calif. — The LA Galaxy ended their undefeated preseason streak by falling to the New England Revolution in a closed-door scrimmage on Wednesday night in a game that ended their Southern California preseason preparations.
The Galaxy’s starting lineup was comprised of no probable starters and listed just Jonathan Klinsmann, and Nick DePuy as players that might make the 18-man roster on any given game day. In fact the lineup included two trialist, one MLS SuperDraft Pick, and one LA Galaxy II player.
But Galaxy coach Greg Vanney wasn’t interested in the final score. What he really wanted to see was how his group adapted to an opponent and how well the team was understanding the concept of how he wanted them to play. And in that vein, Vanney wasn’t disappointed.
The Galaxy’s new coach thought that the first half was a cleaner affair for the team. And agreed that Aguirre, an LA Galaxy II trialist, had a good game and a good night. Noting that his experience was the reason for seeing a more confident player during the game. Aguirre comes from UC Riverside having last played there in 2018.
But the Galaxy allowed goals in the sixth and 23-minute thanks to poor defending and some bad passing out of the back. And it wasn’t until Felix Barajas – another Galaxy II trialist – scored for the club in the 28th minute that the youngster-laden club really started to get their footing back. And while the Revs held possession for most of the night, the Galaxy’s first half lineup held their own against a quality MLS side.
But when things were switched up in the second-half, Both Vanney and the Galaxy may have over thought things. While the Galaxy got a starter in Jorge Villafaña into the defense, and got veteran Sasha Kljestan back into the midfield, the Galaxy were too slow and too plodding to really pressure New England. And that allowed two goals in three minutes to really open up the game for the final time.
Vanney noted that the Revolution first team played in that second half and also acknowledged that perhaps he really put the defense in a position to fail. And in trying to neutralize some things the Revs were doing well, he may have overburdened a young defense with trying to do too much. They’re learning a system and sometimes that system doesn’t allow them to play without overthinking.
So while the final score doesn’t flatter anyone, Vanney and the Galaxy got what they wanted out of the game. And in the preseason, that’s the main goal.
The Galaxy will travel to Tucson Arizona on Friday for 10 days where they will play three matches against MLS Opponents in the 2021 Visit Tucson Sun Cup.
NOTES FROM THE GAME
There’s a drop-off between the starters and those that might come off the bench! After Saturday’s victory highlighted some youthful performances, and some players to watch, Wednesday’s game highlighted the fact the Galaxy’s roster is incomplete and unlikely to be filled by many of the younger names on the roster or as trialists. As for Barajas and Aguirre, they may have earned themselves some more playing time. Especially as the bulk of the Galaxy II team was in Tucson ahead of the senior teams arrival
Victor Vazquez and Samuel Grandsir should both be with the Galaxy in Tucson, AZ by Friday. Vanney thought that Vazquez would arrive by Thursday evening and that Grandsir would be there by Friday. And if his quarantine math is correct, he should have both players training with the Galaxy, and possibly playing in a game, by Wednesday. Additionally, Sebastian Lletget and Julian Araujo are already in Tucson and the Galaxy expected Jonathan dos Santos and Efrain Alvarez to arrive by Thursday morning (possibly Wednesday night). The quarantine rules in Arizona are just 5 days with a negative Covid-19 test.
Vanney told reporters after the game that it would be difficult to get any more roster additions into this squad before the Galaxy’s opening match against Inter Miami on April 18. But he did seem confident that at least on roster addition could be made before the Galaxy’s home-opener on April 25. He mentioned that Visas and Quarantine are the two biggest hurdles.
Jonathan Klinsmann collided with a Revolution player in the early stages of the second half. It looked early on that he suffered another head injury – Klinsmann had to return from the US U23 Olympic Qualifying camp because of a concussion earlier this month. Klinsmann was cleared and played the remainder of the game.
Ethan Zubak wore the captain’s armband in tonight’s scrimmage.