SANDY, UT - JUNE 20: Landon Donovan #10 of Los Angeles Galaxy takes the ball past of Real Salt Lake's goalie Nick Rimando #18 and scores a goal during the first half of an MLS soccer game June 20, 2012 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah. (Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)
SANDY, UT -- The LA Galaxy were able to come from two goals down to defeat Real Salt Lake at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy Utah, winning 3-2 on the strength of a Landon Donovan brace. Things looked bleak down 2-0 early, but the Galaxy were able to get one back before halftime. A series of Real Salt Lake defensive missteps let the Galaxy back into a match many had written off a half hour into the match.
The game winner came in the 68', when Mike Magee was able to hook up with Landon Donovan. On a counter, Magee laid out a through ball from the left side of the pitch. Donovan was able to time his run to stay onside, then control the ball past Nick Rimando and a quick flip toward the back of the net.
The game up to that point had been defined by defensive mishaps. On RSL's second goal, Alvaro Saborio was able to get to a Fabian Espindola cross before David Junior Lopes could, and Saborio's chip went over the head of Josh Saunders. On the Galaxy's first goal, Landon Donovan was able to collect a back pass the died at about the eighteen yard line and finish it past Rimando.
The Galaxy's second goal came just after halftime, again with a defensive mistake. Jamison Olave played a ball to no one, and Landon Donovan picked it up. He laid it up for Mike Magee, who was able to finish like he was putting on a clinic.
The lessons learned from this match are quite simple. Landon Donovan and Mike Magee work very well on the ground together. Marcelo Sarvas keeps things pushing forward in the middle, allow David Beckham to track back and throw up some crosses. David Junior Lopes is not that great at center back, and should be quickly replaced.
Real Salt Lake might also have some issues at the back to work out as well. This game could easily be an anomaly, but RSL made some awful mental mistakes once they got up 2-0. Despite all their claims that they wouldn't take the Galaxy lightly, Salt Lake lost their concentration after going up early.
The Galaxy will gladly take the three points, after a point on the road seemed like the perfect result. They'll have to turn it around quickly, with the Vancouver Whitecaps coming in to play on Saturday. David Beckham and Landon Donovan have both gone a full 90 over the last two matches, will Bruce Arena play them a third match in seven days? That fatigue causing lineup making was blamed for the Galaxy's poor start to begin the year.
Perhaps that wasn't it. Perhaps whatever cobwebs the Galaxy have been fighting have been knocked out. Three points on the road is huge, and hopefully can be the shape of things to come.