When you're not fit, you're not fit. And when the other team is scoring off deflections, what can you do?
The LA Galaxy, lacking match fitness and chemistry, were blown out by Liga MX club Santos Laguna 4-0 in the 2nd leg of the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal series Tuesday night in Torreon, losing the series by a considerable margin following a 0-0 draw last week in LA.
Right away the Galaxy were under immediate pressure. Off an early corner kick, a short pass found a Santos attacking in the box but the ball bobbled at the point of contact and he slammed it over.
The Galaxy countered with Robbie Rogers winning a free kick on the right touchline, and with the crowd lustfully booing dos Santos as he stood over the ball, the Mexican international played a sharp cross in that Gerrard headed directly at the keeper.
Santos were unlucky not to score when Nestor Aruajo got on the end of another corner kick, but as the ball slowly bounced out of the reach of Dan Kennedy, dos Santos was at the goalpost and leaped to head the ball off the line and out of danger.
A few minutes later, Gyazi Zardes layed off the ball for Robbie Keane at the top of the 18 but he sliced his shot wide as the Galaxy began to get into the game.
However, the dam would soon break. Taking their fourth corner of the match in the 19th minute, a weak clearance by Jelle Van Damme was rocketed across the box and Martin Bravo was first to the ball, re-directing the ball into the left corner.
Uli Davila would double Santos' advantage four minutes later, accepting the ball inside the right corner of the box, and with Dan Kennedy slightly off his line, his shot deflected off the head of Van Damme and kissed the left post before snuggling into the net.
The dagger blow came in the 36th minute on another set piece as Djaniny expertly headed a corner kick into the left corner to bury any chance of LA making a comeback.
And yet the second half started positive for LA, as Steven Gerrard scuffed a shot from inside the box over the bar. LA attempted to pressure the Santos defense, but match fitness played a toll and eventually the Mexican side was in cruise control.
Martin Bravo secured his brace in the 61st minute, doing well to finish a perfectly weighted through ball from Djaniny past the rushing Kennedy and into the left side netting to complete the rout for Santos.
LA will travel back home to play D.C. United for the opening weekend of MLS play.