That, my friends, is rust, leg-locked, bumbling rust. No nice way to say this, the Los Angeles Galaxy looks like crap. Surrendering possession like the French surrendered half their country, miscuing one pass after the next like a drunk on the tenth round, and defending like….holy shit, the right words elude me.
Osaka has outplayed LA in every facet of the game – quicker brains, smarter movement, better touches, and sharper passing. If LA ‘keeper, Steve Cronin, hadn’t readjusted his gloves, the half-time score would read something closer to 3-0…and that’s giving Cronin more credit than he deserves. LA has too few answers for Osaka’s two Brazilians – Bare, especially. Against that, the Japanese team keeps pouring forward over an LA defense that looks painfully like they met for the first time tonight.
OK. I think I’ve stretched plenty of metaphors and expressed due horror. Now, some general thoughts…
– All is not lost for LA. Alvaro looks pretty good – as in, sign him. Josh Tudela has his moments, as does um…um…David Beckwell? Seriously, Beckham has provided good service, but his energy and short passing haven’t been the best. Alvaro – the dude wearing the “Pires” jersey – looks sharp as anyone for LA. I haven’t seen Kelly Gray do too many things wrong, either, but only a doting, drunken mother could applaud the collective effort.
– The turf sucks. Even if Osaka has coped pretty well, that turf looks hard as it does ugly. But LA’s guys look flustered and overwhelmed at every touch.
– Cronin has the tools, his basic shot-stopping looked sound (enough), but does he need the confidence to command his penalty area. An early headed near-miss said it all: Cronin has to come out and he hesitated.
– You want a horrifying thought? Edson Buddle looks the likeliest offensive threat. Ely Allen, who probably came closest for LA, seemed choked up and hesitant on his one clear chance…too much time around Buddle, perhaps?
OK, all for now. I’m going to go wash out my eyes and pray they don’t get defiled again in the second half.