Los Angeles Galaxy vs. San Jose Earthquakes: 6 Things We Learned

Jo-Ryan SalazarSenior Analyst IMay 24, 2012

Los Angeles Galaxy vs. San Jose Earthquakes: 6 Things We Learned

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    Finding creative ways to lose games is an important facet of gong show football. It doesn't matter if you're leading or not or if you're playing a style contrary to gong show football; if you are on the losing end by the full-time whistle, you have mastered it.

    There are countless methods to displaying gong show football. On Wednesday at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., Bruce Arena's Los Angeles Galaxy discovered the ultra-rare "Surrender Three Goals In 20 Minutes While Up Two and Down One Player" method in their 3-2 defeat to the San Jose Earthquakes in the first round of the California Clasico.

    Here are six things we learned from Wednesday's midweek encounter.

1. Alan Gordon Continues His Hot Streak Against the Galaxy

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    Alan Gordon scoring on Los Angeles is nothing new. Last year, in essentially the last minute of stoppage time in Toronto FC's 2-2 draw with the Galaxy at the HDC, Gordon scored on an equalizer, forcing LA to split points.

    This was a similar situation in the fourth minute of stoppage time. A.J. DeLaGarza failed to mark Gordon, and Brian Perk showed why he is not ready for prime time by being schooled by Gordon on a 1-v-1.

    Where was Bill Gaudette when LA needed him? Or rather, Josh Saunders? (Don't get me started on him, either...)

2. Decent Football from LA...for Only 74 Minutes

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    For the most part, Los Angeles played an up-tempo style of football, and they were able to get goals from Hector Jimenez early in the first half and Mike Magee in the second half.

    But they were only able to actually play the game right for 74 minutes. Afterwards, LA decided, bugger this, we're off to discover a new way to play gong show football.

    And they paid dearly for it...in deserving fashion. Well done, boys.

3. Hector Jimenez: From Hero to Goat in the Space of an Hour

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    It's amazing how a hero can turn into a goat within the span of an hour. But such is the case of poor Hector Jimenez. After scoring in the third minute of play, he delivered a two-footed tackle on San Jose's Steven Beitashour.

    Even though Mike Magee would score minutes later, this was where the match would be lost for Los Angeles. It wouldn't be long before San Jose took advantage of the handicap and turned zero points into three.

4. Marvin Chavez...the Revelation for San Jose

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    Who really needs Chris Wondolowski anyway? With Los Angeles fielding an understrength side, the addition of Marvin Chavez made all the difference.

    Here is someone who was able to school David Beckham into converting set piece opportunities, with Steven Lenhart being the beneficiary.

    The Lenhart goal in the 76th minute sparked the comeback for San Jose, and they wouldn't look back. Chavez's substitution was a clear game-changer for the Earthquakes. That's what we call a super sub.

5. Man Advantage Leads to Stat Domination for the Quakes

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    When you are a man up, chances are you will win the contest. San Jose had superior ball possession (52.2 percent to 47.8 percent) and passing accuracy (76 percent to 73 percent). Furthermore, the Quakes had more open play crosses (18 to 17) and shots on goal (15 to 10).

    Jimenez's red card changed the dynamics of the contest, along with Chavez's substitution, leading to the comeback victory for a team that is flying in the MLS Western Conference.

6. Houston Dynamo Smell Blood in the Water

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    And this season is not going to get any easier for Los Angeles. A rematch of the 2011 MLS Cup is on tap, and you can bet, after seeing the Galaxy throw this match away thanks to some gong show football, Dominic Kinnear's Houston Dynamo smell blood in the water.

    Kickoff at BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. PT/2:30 p.m. ET and will be televised by NBC Sports. A preview of that contest will come later this week.

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