KANSAS CITY, KS - SEPTEMBER 05: Midfielder David Beckham (C) of the Los Angeles Galaxy pushes the ball up field against pressure from defenders Graham Zusi (R) and Julio Cesar (L) of Sporting Kansas City during the second half on September 5, 2011 at LiveStrong Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kansas. (Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images)
The Los Angeles Galaxy will attempt to clinch a spot in the playoffs today against reigning MLS Cup Champions the Colorado Rapids.
When the two teams met earlier this season, on June 18th, LA defeated the Rapids 3-1 with goals from Juninho and Chad Barrett, along with an own goal. Conor Casey scored the lone goal for the Rapids, but the Galaxy won't have to worry about him this time around. Casey suffered a season-ending Achilles injury back in July, and will be out for an estimated eight to ten months.
In the Rapids most recent match, their six-game undefeated streak ended as they fell 2-0 to the Chicago Fire. That was back on August 27th; Colorado has gone almost two weeks without playing a game. This means the Rapids will probably start off a little slow, needing time to get back into their rhythm. LA will try to capitalize on this and snag an early goal.
The Galaxy also recently came off of a long stretch between games, when they had 11 days off because their match with the New York Red Bulls was postponed because of Hurricane Irene. They took on Sporting Kansas City on Monday, and came away with a 2-2 tie, gaining a point on the road. Sean Franklin scored twice for the Galaxy, bringing his season total to four goals. David Beckham recorded another assist, his fourth in the last three games, bringing his season total to 12.
The Galaxy will also welcome back their new star Robbie Keane from his Ireland national team duty. Keane scored in his debut for the Galaxy, and will be looking to add to that tally against the Rapids.
There is more bad news for Colorado coming into Friday's match, as defender Drew Moor's streak of 69 consecutive league games of playing every minute will end. He will miss the match against the Galaxy because of yellow card accumulation. Up until this game, Moor has played a total of 6,210 consecutive minutes; every single minute of every single league game since August 6th, 2009. He holds the MLS record among field players.
The LA Galaxy has lost just once in its last 18 MLS games, and aim to keep it at one loss and clinch a playoff spot on Friday against the Rapids at the Home Depot Center.