LA Galaxy Post Match Talking Points for May 20; Galaxy Fell Further Against D.C.

The LA Galaxy Fell Further Down the Western Conference Table With a 3-0 Loss vs. D.C. United on May 20, 2023. (Photo Credit: LA Galaxy)
The LA Galaxy fell further down the Western Conference table with a 3-0 loss vs. D.C. United on May 20, 2023. (Photo Credit: LA Galaxy)
Gaston Brugman and his Los Angeles Galaxy teammates kept D.C. United quiet for 70 minutes on the road until conceding three goals in nine minutes to fall to a 3-0 defeat on May 20, 2023. (Photo Credit: LA Galaxy)

Washington, D.C. – The Los Angeles Galaxy fell further down the Western Conference table with a demoralizing 3-0 away loss to D.C. United on May 20, 2023. After two matches won last week, LA fell to two road defeats in four days, which culminated in conceding three self-inflicted goals in nine minutes that sealed their fate. The Galaxy’s recent Cali Clásico win is ancient history as the team looked bereft of ideas during the recent two-game skid. With a Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup match against city rival LAFC on Tuesday, May 23, things might get worse before they get better.

LA Galaxy Post Match

The First 70

Anyone that watched this match would agree that neither team displayed the most scintillating soccer in the first half or the first 70 minutes. For a team that’s had problems conceding goals, however, the ability to withstand both the rain and an in-form Christian Benteke in the first half was a major win. “I think the game is relatively tight for 70 minutes. Not a whole lot really clear going on, on either side. Each team is getting into each other’s half a bit, but nothing extraordinarily dangerous,” Head Coach Greg Vanney said of the opening half and first 70 minutes of the match.

For as solid as the Galaxy were defensively, the offense continued to struggle. Captain Javier “Chicharito” Hernández continued to struggle, with the most dangerous chances falling to Tyler Boyd and Mark Delgado. Even these weren’t clear chances and Vanney will need to figure out how to get goals from a team whose highest scorer has only two goals.

READ MORE: 2023 LA Galaxy Season Preview: Riqui Shoots for MVP

Bond Blunder 

The thing about not scoring goals is, that you can’t make mistakes. Just one can kill a team’s good defensive work. With the Galaxy seemingly in control of the match, or at least in it, a simple ball was played back to Galaxy Goalkeeper Jonathan Bond. And then Bond gave Benteke a gift that will make the striker think it’s Christmastime.

After the ball was played to the Goalie, he got the ball tangled under his feet because of some good pressure from United Midfielder Lewis O’Brien. O’Brien was able to harry Bond into giving the ball directly to Benteke, who had only to pass the ball into the net for the 1-0 D.C. United lead. In an instant, all the Galaxy’s good work was undone.

“We actually played well, I thought, maybe without creating too much, but we defended really well. We dealt with [Christian] Benteke really well when the game was in the balance, and then it obviously comes down to not making mistakes. One hundred percent it was down to me that we ended up giving up that first goal up,” Bond said of his mistake that led to the first goal.

The Galaxy fell further.

Just two minutes later, D.C. United had another goal. This time, the domino effect of compounding mistakes reached Defender Martin Cáceres. Cáceres misplayed a long clearance by United and allowed Benteke and the ball to get behind him. The ball fell to Cristian Dajome, who held the ball up on Jalen Neal. Dajome would return the ball to Benteke, who was still a step ahead of Cáceres. Both defenders stayed with Benteke, which allowed the forward to slip a neat through ball in behind the Galaxy defense for Dajome. The striker had only to keep his cool to send his shot past Bond for the 2-0.

Away Agony

The Galaxy fell further seven minutes later. After building well from the back, United would send in a cross from the right wing that Bond did well to initially parry. D.C. United Attacker Mateusz Klich was the first to react to the rebound. He slammed his shot into the goal from close range for the 3-0 scoreline and to land the knockout blow on the Galaxy.

The defeat means the Galaxy has still not won on the road this year. They’ve only scored once and that was in their first road match of the MLS season. According to a Galaxy press release, they hold a “0-5-2 (1 GF, 13 GA) record in seven matches played on the road during the 2023 campaign.” It leaves LA toward the bottom of the table, where they and SKC have played the worst game of chicken ever to achieve MLS futility. Simply not good enough.

But the team hasn’t given up hope of saving their campaign. Raheem Edwards thinks the team can turn the season around.

“Definitely. Listen, by no stretch of the imagination are we happy or okay. Obviously, we’re in a difficult situation, but I think being in a difficult situation… The first thing is having belief. If you don’t have belief then we’re going to continue to stay in this stretch,” Edwards confessed of the difficult moment. But after a defeat in which the Galaxy fell further instead of rebounding from a midweek defeat, belief is hard to come by. Especially with the Galaxy’s next match looming.

Just three days after their D.C. defeat, things could get worse. The Galaxy travel to LAFC on Tuesday in the Open Cup. It will lead to the question, “How much further can the Galaxy fall?”