We are down to the last game of the regular season. The LA Galaxy host top of the league FC Dallas at StubHub Center on Sunday.
Let’s break things down for the Galaxy. Bruce Arena’s men are already qualified to the MLS playoffs. They’ve also clinched third place in the Western Conference, meaning the Galaxy will play their first playoff game at home. Who the Galaxy face remains a mystery but we know it will be between Real Salt Lake, Seattle Sounders, Sporting KC, or Portland Timbers.
So what exactly is on the line in this game? Nothing, at least for the Galaxy. Coach Bruce Arena has already mentioned he will likely rotate and rest his players for this match, which might be seen as a good idea considering the Galaxy open their playoff campaign a few days after.
However, the Galaxy can still play a big role in the Supporters’ Shield race. FC Dallas currently leads in the standings, but a defeat could mean the Colorado Rapids can overtake Oscar Pareja’s side at the top. Pareja might be more inclined to rest several of his starters, too, after Mauro Díaz picked up a season-ending injury against the Sounders last week.
All things considered, it wouldn’t be surprising to see both of these teams face off again in a few weeks. Naturally, FC Dallas are favorites to come out on top in the West, but the Galaxy are no strangers to making a run in the playoffs.
FC Dallas 1-0 LA Galaxy - October 2, 2016 - MLS
A lone Walker Zimmerman goal was enough to hand FC Dallas a 1-0 win at home against the Galaxy.
LA Galaxy (4-2-3-1): Rowe; Rogers, Steres, Van Damme, Cole; Husidic, Larentowicz; Boateng, dos Santos, Lletget; Keane
FC Dallas (4-2-3-1): Seitz; Harris, Zimmerman, Hedges, Hollingshead; Acosta, Gruezo; Barrios, Rosales, Akindele; Urruti