CARSON, CA (August 10, 2016) – The LA Galaxy lost Wednesday night at the StubHub Center 2-1 to FC Dallas in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Semifinals. The Galaxy had a 1-0 lead in extra time, but two Dallas set piece goals doomed them. Dallas will host the New England Revolution in the final on September 21.
Galaxy Blow Extra Time Lead To Lose USOC Semifinal 2-1
Head coach Bruce Arena started mostly a reserve roster with his squad on just three days rest. Leonardo and Dave Romney started at center back. The front midfield consisted of Mike Magee, Raul Mendiola, and Emmanuel Boateng. Alan Gordon started up top.
FC Dallas were off from league play this past week, allowing head coach Oscar Pareja to start a true first team. Mauro Diaz started in the No. 10 role. The midfield was also highlighted by Kellyn Acosta and Michael Barrios. Walker Zimmerman and Matt Hedges started at center back.
The Galaxy came out the more aggressive team, possessing the ball and creating chances. On multiple occasions, Mendiola and Magee found Gordon in good spots, but the No, 9 couldn’t convert. Poor finishing by the Galaxy appeared to carry over from Sunday’s match. Dallas countered for much of the first half through Diaz and Barrios.
The first half ended 0-0.
Dallas came out of their shell gradually in the second half. They continue to use their speed and play through Diaz to create chances. Their best opportunities came on set pieces. With the Galaxy’s primary aerial defenders unavailable, Zimmerman and Hedges were able to get a few open looks, but could not convert.
The game got stretched as Arena brought in reinforcements in the 74th minute, bringing on Gyasi Zardes and Giovani dos Santos.
LA nearly won the game in the second minute of stoppage time. The Galaxy had good build up along the wing. Jeff Larentowicz was able to flick the ball onto Baggio Husidic. Husidic struck the ball well, but it went over the bar.
Regulation time ended 0-0.
Dallas got a few good chances to start extra time, but it was the Galaxy who drew first blood. Zardes led a counter attack and found Dos Santos with a through pass. Dos Santos slip the center backs, but couldn’t control the ball. Dallas goalkeeper Chris Seitz came off his line, tripping Dos Santos. The official called a penalty.
Magee converted, forcing Seitz to the wrong side and slotting the ball far corner with ease. The Galaxy possessed the ball through the end of the half, but could not find a second goal.
The two teams traded chances at the start of the second half, with stars from both sides missing opportunities.
Hedges tied the game up on a header off a corner in the 116th minute. Hedges got between Larentowicz and Zardes; he didn’t appear to be marked by anyone. Dallas won another corner in the first minute of stoppage time. Diaz found a late running Victor Ulloa who found the back of the next to take the lead.
The match ended 2-1.
Much like the game on Sunday, the Galaxy’s poor finishing in the first half left the door open for the opponent. A reserve squad was unable to defend on critical set pieces late. The Galaxy host the Colorado Rapids this Saturday at 7:30 pm PST>