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Los Angeles Galaxy Back Online After 2-1 Win Against D.C. United

Jo-Ryan SalazarSenior Analyst IJuly 19, 2010

WASHINGTON - JULY 18: Landon Donovan #10 of the Los Angeles Galaxy shoots the ball against Devon McTavish #18 of D.C. United at RFK Stadium on July 18, 2010 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Ned Dishman/Getty Images)
Ned Dishman/Getty Images

Los Angeles Galaxy fans, allow me to give you some therapy. Take a deep breath, as deep as you can, and say "Ahhh." One more time, "Ahhh." In the world of sports, we call that a sigh of relief.

That's because after three straight dismal outings on the road, Bruce Arena's Galaxy finally broke through with goals by Landon Donovan and Edson Buddle in their 2-1 victory over D.C. United at RFK Stadium.

I'll have to tell you this: my prediction for a draw nearly came true. A poor clearance in the 90th minute saw D.C. United almost succeed on the counterattack, but an easy header from Pablo Hernandez missed and hit the top netted instead of the goal.

And believe me when I say this: that was the easiest chance for D.C. yet. Goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts was beat. He was beat to the punch by the black shirts of Curt Onalfo pushing forward. I can't believe that the Argentine international could not succeed in preventing the Galaxy from earning their first win at RFK since 2006.

It was criminal to miss that close. But giving credit where it's due is what I like to do after a match, and Edson Buddle—my goodness—he did his part in persevering for that first goal. Dejan Jakovic did all he could to make a stop, but to no avail.

Troy Perkins was jammed in the box and the only thing he could do was watch the American Pele make his mark on the game with his 11th of the season in the 38th minute.

D.C. did show up offensively to make this a tad bit interesting. Andy Najar is a player to watch out for, and a fixture for the future. He equalized in the 54th minute, energizing the crowd on a header.

However, football changes with the emotions. No need to tell the Barra Brava, La Norte, or the Screaming Eagles that as Julius James earned the role of the goal with a handball, resulting in an easy penalty for Donovan to take.

Omar Gonzalez's return seemed to be a breath of fresh air. His presence on the back line proved crucial, and as I suspected, they sure were missing him last week.

I was not pleased with the lack of finish from Alan Gordon. As far as I'm concerned, he had a horrible outing tonight. You have to be able to connect on the chance you are given. He was rusty on Saturday.

Of course, Donovan was not as much as factor in this game either, but because of Gordon's inability to tine his finishing correctly, the match was closer that it should have been. Sean Franklin did not do himself any favors with his missed opportunities to put the game on ice, either.

With Chris Wondolowski and the San Jose Earthquakes rolling in for the home leg of the California Clasico on Thursday, one can only hope that this finishing issue is addressed.

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