The LA Galaxy will enter the final Cali-Clasico of 2017 with absolutely nothing to lose — except another game.
The Galaxy (6-13-5) are in the midst of a nine-game winless streak (0-8-1) and haven’t won at home since April 7, 2017. Their last victory, in general, was earlier this year on June 21st when they beat the Colorado Rapids 3-1. But it’s been over two-months since their last win, and it’s been nearly five-moths since that lone victory at home.
Sunday is a chance to fix some of that, but they’ll need to do it by defeating the San Jose Earthquakes in the final meeting between the two this year. A year that has gone anything but the way the Galaxy and their front office has expected.
- GAME INFO: LA Galaxy vs. San Jose Earthquakes, Sunday, August 27, 2017, 4 PM
- TV INFO: FS1 and Fox Deportes
The Earthquakes (9-11-6) come into the match on a three-game winless streak and were just blown out of the water by Real Salt Lake, midweek, 4-0 on the road. And the road is where they’ve struggled the most. They’ve amassed a record of 2-10-1 away from the bay area this season, and have lost six games in a row on the road.
This will be the fourth competitive meeting between the two teams this year. The Galaxy won the first game, and the Earthquakes won the last two. But this is the only meeting this season in Southern California.
- February 11, 2017 (Preseason Friendly) Cashman Field (Las Vegas)
- May 27, 2017 (4-2) Galaxy Win (Avaya Stadium)
- July 1, 2017 (2-1) Galaxy Loss (Stanford Stadium)
- July 10, 2017 (3-2) Galaxy Loss Open Cup (Avaya Stadium)
The Earthquakes sit in seventh place in the Western Conference and are just two points out of a playoff position. But with eight games remaining they’ll need to secure a handful of points on their way to the finish line to ensure they’ll be above the red line at the end of all this.
They’ll be relying on Chris Wondolowski who is the club’s leading scorer. He’s scored ten times on the season including four goals against the Galaxy. He’ll be looking to extend that streak as he comes to StubHub Center.
The Galaxy’s season is pretty much over. But they still need to find some success at the end if anyone is going to feel good about the offseason. They sit in ninth place in the Western Conference and, with ten games remaining, have almost no chance of getting to the postseason.
Giovani dos Santos has missed the last two games with a hamstring injury and was seen at training on Friday to be running on the sideline. Jonathan dos Santos had an eye infection and sat out training along with Jermaine Jones who still hasn’t had the stitches removed from underneath his big toe.
Jones is out for the match on Sunday, as is Ashley Cole who received a dubious red card in the first half of the Galaxy’s most recent loss. But both Jonathan and Giovani dos Santos, as well as Romain Alessandrini, should be available for the match. But whether we’ll see them all start is another question altogether.
It’s been a long and difficult season for the Galaxy. They’ve been a complete failure this season on and off the field. They fired a coach, shipped off their captain, and failed to put a competitive team on the field. And if they don’t have a strong run to finish out this season, something that is almost impossible with the schedule they face, they’ll go down in history as the worst Galaxy team ever.
Careers and jobs are on the line. Losing to the Earthquakes, their most natural rival, would be like adding salt to the wound. When it comes to rivalry games, it’s more often about who wants it more and less about who’s in better form. And at this point, you’d have to think that the Galaxy wants it more — even if their form is something truly horrific at this point in the season.
The following is CoG’s predicted lineup. Subject to change.
Giovani dos Santos is likely to come off the bench after recovering from his hamstring injury. I wouldn’t expect him to start. Dave Romney will swing out to his preferred left back position to fill in for the suspended Ashley Cole. Bradley Diallo will play at his preferred position at Center Back and pair up with Dan Steres. Rafa Garcia will fill in for Jermaine Jones who sits out with a toe injury.