Landon Donovan tries to set the all-time MLS goal scoring record today as the LA Galaxy play their first road match of the season at Real Salt Lake. The Starting XI for LA has the first real changes of the season after Arena saw some flaws in Tijuana. It includes a formation change with a diamond in the midfield and five personnel changes :
LA Galaxy: Perk; Riley, Gonzalez, DLG, Dunivant; Ishizaki, Juninho, Husidic, Donovan; Keane, Friend
Penedo had to return to Panama to take care of some visa issues, and is in Los Angeles now. Leonardo is removed which was called for heavily amongst the commentariat. A.J. DeLaGarza takes his place next to Omar Gonzalez as Kofi Opare and Kyle Venter did not travel and are playing with LA Galaxy II. James Riley slots over to the right, and Todd Dunivant ultimately is the player coming in for Leo.
There are changes in the midfield and the forwards as well. After everyone recognized that the central midfield was an issue Paolo Mastroeni starts in place of Marcelo Sarvas. The lost boy, Gyasi Zardes, gets to step back a bit with Stefan Ishizaki starting in his place.
Up top Robbie Keane goes with Rob Friend, which at this point is six of one and half a dozen of the other. Friend's height means we should expect to see more crosses, which further explains Ishizaki over Zardes. Arena is going to try and go over RSL's back wall instead of through it.
The Galaxy and RSL have traded wins in their last nine regular season matches. Real Salt Lake have not lost a home opener in their MLS history.
RSL: Rimando; Beltran, Schuler, Borchers, Wingert; Beckerman, Gil, Grabavoy, Morales; Sabo, Plata
LA Galaxy bench: Rowe, Sarvas, Samuel, Zardes, Leonardo, Hoffman, Gargan
RSL bench: Attinella; Salcedo, Mansally, Grossman, Stertzer, Mulholland, Garcia