CARSON, CALIFORNIA. LA Galaxy held on to a 1-1 draw with visiting Portland Timbers, as the injuries pile up worse than traffic on the 405 interstate during a light drizzle. Timbers forward Fernando Adi waited 52 minutes to break the scoresheet. Timbers Nat Borchers contributed an own goal to the Galaxy’s cause in the 84th minute to tie up the game.
Midfielder Rafael Garcia on his surprise stint as an outside back cameo, replacing injured Robbie Rogers stated, “You gotta step in and get the job done.” Rogers exited the game with a hip contusion.
Injuries have plagued the LA squad since the season debut. Manager Bruce Arena demonstrates slight concern about the current injuries in the squad, “It’s all part of the game. It happens every year. It’s a part of the game we don’t like, but it’s a part of the game.”
Giovani dos Santos returned to the starting lineup after leaving at halftime of the season debut injured. Arena satisfied with his return stated “he played OK. He’s only played 45 minutes this year coming into this game so to get 65 minutes out of him was good.”
Gio, as he is known to Mexico National Team fans, looked uncomfortable on the field as he was asked to take a creative facilitator role playing in the channel behind the sole striker Gyasi Zardes. No stranger to the role as his debut run for the league helped the Galaxy carry momentum into the playoffs with Gio contributing many assists and goals with very little time to gel.
Arena added on dos Santos, ” You could see he needs a little more time, but it’s good to get him back.” Mexico fans are hoping the MLS sports conditioning methods affect dos Santos similarly to Mexico legend Cuauhtémoc Blanco, who looked rejuvenated during his stint in the MLS, who returned to lead Mexico during the 2010 World Cup qualifiers. Only time will tell if can return to his previous performance heights.