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Seattle Sounders vs. LA Galaxy, 2016 MLS: Match Preview

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MLS: LA Galaxy at Seattle Sounders FC Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports

Back to where everything seems so rosy. The LA Galaxy go into their match against the Seattle Sounders on the back of four straight wins and an unbeaten run that extends through their last six matches. The mood at the Galaxy has definitely changed. No longer a team gives up late goals, Bruce Arena’s men have found a ways to escape late-game situations with all three points.

But the narrative of this game perhaps has less to do with the red-hot Galaxy, and more about the current state of the Sounders. Earlier in the week, the Sounders decided to part ways with coach Sigi Schmid after seven long years at the club. Schmid is a legend in his own right, and to give him his due, he deserves all the credit in the world for turning the Sounders into one of the best teams in the Western Conference.

Needles to say, however, this Sounders’ season has been anything but optimistic. That is no fault of the Galaxy, of course, who have already defeated the Sounders twice this season. In that regard, the Galaxy will once again look at their northern rivals at one of their more vulnerable stages in years. Add to that the good form they are in, and you get the Galaxy licking their chops.

Speaking of good forms, the Galaxy owe a lot of this unbeaten run Robbie Keane. Up to now, the Galaxy have won every game this season in which Robbie Keane has scored. That is seven goals for the captain in six wins. He is also no stranger to scoring at CenturyLink Field, having netted the winner in the Galaxy’s 1-0 win over the Sounders from three weeks ago.

As rivalries go, this is still a big game in both team’s calendars. While the teams are living opposite realities at the moment, this is still a game you don’t want to lose. In that sense, Bruce Arena will be sure to treat this game like any other game, and if it means another close win over the struggling Sounders, there surely won’t be too many Galaxy fans complaining.

LAST MEETING

LA Galaxy 4-2 Seattle Sounders - July 20, 2016 - US Open Cup

The Galaxy twice came from behind as Sebastian Lletget scored a brace to lead Bruce Arena’s side to the semifinals of the US Open Cup.

LIKELY LINE-UPS

LA Galaxy (4-2-3-1): Rowe; DeLaGarza, Steres, Van Damme, Cole; De Jong, Larentowicz; Zardes, Gerrard, dos Santos; Keane

Seattle Sounders (4-3-3): Frei; Mears, Evans, Marshall, Jones; Roldan, Friburg, Ivanshitz; Gomez, Morris, Dempsey