The SuperClasico is back!
Chivas USA by Manny Carrera: Sal Zizzo made his first start of the season at right wing against Philadelphia and put in a relatively uneventful 54 minutes. While this may seem to be of little consolation to a squad that has struggled with their midfield play all season, Zizzo can bring a dimension to the midfield when healthy. The former U-21 standout boasts world class speed, a shift from a midfield that seemingly has a surplus of defensive minded players.
Los Angeles Galaxy by Jonathan Vera: With superstars like Landon Donovan, David Beckham, Edson Buddle, and company one would assume everything is peaches and cream. However, that is not the case. The only thing that can be said about the LA club is that they’re in first place… still. Actually, it’s quite amazing they’re still on top. Real Salt Lake has had many opportunities to usurp the throne, but somehow the Galaxy repeatedly thwarted RSL’s idea. I guess that’s commendable.
Chivas: The Goats went into Philadelphia not yet having been mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, yet they put forth a very limp performance. The squad displayed the same symptoms that have haunted the squad since the beginning of the season. Their midfield fails to create for the forwards and poor service leads to counterattacks on a porous defense. The squad has relapsed into the types of performances that have kept the Goats at or near the cellar for most of the season.
Galaxy: The Galaxy are playing like a bunch of mimes on the pitch – no one is talking to one another. At least that’s what it seems like. The passing and building up of the play look promising, but the final decisions are sloppy. The Red Bull defense basically shut-down the Galaxy’s offense, but when you bare the MLS leading goal scorer and playmaker – that is not supposed to happen.
Chivas: 4-4-2: With nothing left to play for, expect the Goats to give Sal Zizzo another start, Alan Gordon to feature up front against his former squad and Jonathan Bornstein his final taste of the SuperClasico. The Goat’s performance in this match will speak volumes about the type of impact that the Martin Vasquez has had on the squad.
Galaxy: The defense needs to get sharper. Gregg Berhalter on the DL has left a weak point in the Galaxy defense, and Omar Gonzalez’s attraction to yellow cards and suspensions has got to stop. Leonardo’s accumulating botches will land him on the bench and maybe even a trip back to Brazil. Therefore, it would be wise of Coach Bruce Arena to start the game with a 4-5-1 formation, establish dominance, and push Donovan up to make the magic happen. Every time the Galaxy have been chasing, Arena always pushes Donovan up. Sometimes it seems to work, so why not have him there all the time?
Chivas: A derby may be just what both squads need to break out of the slumps that they currently find themselves in. A long season is nearing its end, and both squads more or less have their futures determined. A playoff like atmosphere at the Home Depot Center can swing the match either way.
Galaxy: it’s the home stretch of the MLS regular season. The Galaxy will be fighting for the Supporter Shield and home pitch advantage in the post season, meanwhile the Goats, who are out of the playoff run, will just look to even up this year’s Superclasico.
Chivas: Alan Gordon’s work rate will put the Goats up early, but the Galaxy are at a crossroads late in the season and will look to use this match as a launching pad for the postseason. Juninho can have a big game if he avoids getting taken out of the match by Paulo Nagamura.
Galaxy: The LA derby is a special event for the Galaxy as they will look to affirm their dominance over the Chivas. I think it’s appropriate the Angel City Brigade start a new chant asking, “Who’s your daddy? LA fleeces the Goats 1-0.For more on Major League Soccer, visit Goal.com's MLS page and join Goal.com USA's Facebook fan page!