The LA Galaxy (13-10-4, 43 pts) did little right in their 0-1 defeat at the hands of the Colorado Rapids (11-8-9, 42 pts), but that doesn't mean Colorado did a whole lot right either. On a night when a 0-0 draw would have been a fair result, old friend Edson Buddle managed to put a rocket past Brian Rowe.
With every team having to push through with absences due to the international window, the Galaxy were especially hurt. It's been months since the Galaxy got a goal Robbie Keane or Landon Donovan wasn't involved in, and that streak continued Saturday night.
"We just didn't play well enough tonight," said Bruce Arena. "Not well enough to win anyway."
With the battery of Juninho and Marcelo Sarvas in the middle of the pitch, LA were still able to control possession and create a high number of chances. Colorado had to get by on steals and long shots, but just such a situation was enough for Edson Buddle to knock home the lone goal of the match.
That possession led to seven shots from the centre of the penalty area, three of which were on target. The problem is those on target where softly hit right at the keeper. Two were blocked, and two were headed high by Galaxy defenders on set piece plays.
Forwards Villarreal and McBean combining for three attempts in the middle of the penalty area and none of them trying Clint Irwin shows how far the young strikers have to go. The best shot of the night came from Marcelo Sarvas who hit the underside of the crossbar from the right side of the penalty area.
In the grand scheme of the final match days in MLS, the loss hurts LA. Seattle was able to get a win against Chicago giving them six points on the weak, and Portland showed no mercy to Toronto. LA are holding onto third, and with RSL sitting this weekend out it just means the Supporters' Shield race is getting tighter.
LA gets it's last long road trip out of the way next, taking on league worst DC United. Three points there are a must, as they try to get their playoff run back on track.