Landon Donovan played a hand in all four goals. He tallied one goal and had three assists beating a demoralized Seattle side.
The Sounders kept Edson Buddle, the league’s leading scorer, off the scoreboard. He did notch his second assist of the season on Landon Donovan’s goal. The LA captain was the player to watch today. He added three more assists to his tally and scored the final goal of the match.
Seattle forward Fredy Montero had the first scoring chance in the 18th minute of play. The Colombian received a lobbed pass in the box area without a defender between him and ‘keeper Donovan Ricketts. The lanky goalie extended his arms to send the shot back into the pitch before it was cleared by the Galaxy defense.
Three minutes later, LA took a 1-0 lead on forward Jovan Kirovski’s first strike of the year. He received a pass on the run from Donovan. Kirovski hit a screamer 25 yards out that deflected off ‘keeper Kasey Keller’s hands and into the net. The unexpected score quieted the stunned home crowd of 36,273, a new regular season attendance record for the Sounders.
The Rave Green responded in the 28th minute with a similar shot from midfielder Osvaldo Alonso. The Cuban native received a pass from his midfield counterpart Steve Zakuani. The former first round draft pick outmaneuvered Omar Gonzalez to drop a pass to Alonso. His shot from 23-yards streaked just over the crossbar and into the stands.
Eight minutes before the half, Alonso fell to the pitch and gingerly made his way to the bench to end his afternoon with a right quad strain. He was replaced by Nathan Sturgis.
The Galaxy nearly doubled their lead in the 50th minute of play. Donovan made a run towards the endline to the left of the Seattle net. He nimbly sent a pass back into the penalty area to Buddle. The league’s leader scorer made one touch then another. He lobbed it over Keller, but lifted it too high and into the top part of the net.
Two minutes later, Donovan’s out-swinger from the right corner flag found defender Omar Gonzalez in front of Seattle goal. The second year defender headed the ball underneath the crossbar. It bounced down and into the net to double the Galaxy’s lead. It was Gonzalez’s first of the year and Donovan’s second assist of the match.
In the 56th minute, LA increased their lead 3-0 on defender Todd Dunivant’s goal. The LA captain sent his free kick from 40 yards out into the box, where Dunivant used a diving header to again quiet the Seattle partisans.
The Galaxy continued their onslaught with Donovan this time on the receiving end. He was the recipient of some outstanding ball control from Buddle. From the right side of the box, Buddle used a side step and a deft pass to Donovan, who was positioned to Keller’s left. The veteran placed the ball into the goal for his first of the year and an insurmountable 4-0 score.
Seattle attempted to break up the shutout with six minutes remaining in regulation time. Freddie Ljungberg lobbed a ball to the far post to newly signed forward Miguel Montano. The Colombian native failed to control the ball. The ball bounced to the other post to a waiting Zakuani, who also could not handle it.
LA dominated on the scoreboard as well as on the stats sheet. They dominated on offense (13-9 shots and 7-4 on target) and saves (4-3).
Next Saturday, Seattle travels East to play the rejuvenated New York Red Bulls, while Toronto FC visits the Galaxy at the Home Depot Center.
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