It wasn't that long ago LA were legitimate Supporters Shield contenders, but with the Galaxy failing to win in October and suffering consecutive losses to Portland and Sporting Kansas City, LA limp into the Audi MLS Cup playoffs hoping to pull off a victory in a one-game knockout match in Seattle Wednesday night. (7 pm, UniMas)
Can Gio work magic on the carpet? Not the figurative red carpet of course, but the slippery, rubber garnished CenturyLink Field turf. As dangerous as dos Santos can be on the counter-attack, Gio clearly struggled to adapt to the playing conditions in Seattle a few weeks ago. Luckily, dos Santos will know what to expect in a game the Galaxy must win to keep the season alive.
Seattle on fire? After the Sounders roared to a three goal lead inside 20 minutes en route to a blowout victory over Real Salt Lake, it can be tempting to declare Seattle ready to go heading into the playoffs.
However, it's worth noting the Sounders haven't exactly been world beaters lately, and two of the three goals Seattle scored vs. a RSL side with nothing to lose were easily preventable. (And remember, it took a last gasp Chad Barrett equalizer just for the Sounders to draw LA at home a few weeks ago)
The Galaxy are capable of leaving Seattle with a win.
Who will show up for LA? Right now, its interesting how the Galaxy both individually and as a team have singled out Robbie Keane as the one consistent performer for LA.
The question is, who else will show up? After failing to capitalize on several dangerous opportunities vs. Sporting Kansas City including a glorious 44th minute breakaway attempt, Gerrard himself admitted losing sleep that night. Fitness concerns or not, no one can deny Gerrard's competitive spirit. Is Wednesday night the time for Stevie G to nab a clutch goal? Same goes for Gyasi Zardes, who's been underwhelming of late. With just two road wins all season, the Galaxy will obviously need a strong team performance, but now is the time for individuals to step up.
Finally, with LA one game away from going home, will the Galaxy back four finally be galvanized enough to put in a strong shift? We shall see.