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The LA Galaxy have pulled off an incredible run during the last 20 matches. Who is responsible for the Galaxy's turnaround which has secured a playoff berth?
When May ended, the LA Galaxy were winless in seven matches and in last place in the Western Conference at 3-8-2 overall. Now, the Galaxy are sitting in second place in the Western Conference with 49 points and a record of 15-11-4. The Galaxy's incredible turnaround began in June when the goals started going in the net in bunches while the defense began to round into shape.
The Galaxy have scored 0.7 more goals per match in their last 20 matches than during the first 10 games of the MLS season. The Galaxy have also shaved nearly 0.4 goals per match from what they have conceded in the last 17 matches.
The reunited Galaxy championship backline (A.J. DeLaGarza, Todd Dunivant, Omar Gonzalez and Sean Franklin) has had plenty to do with the defensive end of things. The Galaxy have posted eight shutouts (including three of their last four matches) since the start of June. On offense, Robbie Keane has started to produced goals like Galaxy fans hoped he would. Keane had a goal or an assists in five out of six matches (5 goals, 4 assists) in July when he was named MLS Player of the Month. David Beckham caught fire after being snubbed by Team GB for the Olympics and has scored an MLS career-high 7 goals. Landon Donovan has 9 goals and is striking distance of his career-high in assists (16, in 2010) with 14.
Here's the top Galaxy players in Match Impact Rating* since the beginning of June:
Landon Donovan, 69.3
Robbie Keane, 53.9
David Beckham, 48.5
Mike Magee, 42.3
Since the start of June, the Galaxy's Designated Player trio have all posted double-digits in points: Donovan has 19 points (7 goals, 12 assists), Keane has 17 points (11 goals, 6 assists), Beckham has 10 points (5 goals, 5 assists). Two role players have also stepped up of late. Magee has six points (3 goals, 3 assists) and Juninho has six goals. Juninho's MIR is 49 over his last six matches due to six goals during that stretch. All five players have averaged at least 0.54 points per 90 minutes.
*For a introduction to the Offensive Match Impact Rating, see our post on it here.