This Saturday (7 PT, live stream on LAGalaxy.com) is the Galaxy’s last chance to fine tune the squad before 2018 opening day next weekend vs. the Timbers.
They need to make it count. There have been plenty of positives in attack, but the Galaxy are leaking goals and the coaching staff has got to figure out how to get Gio more involved.
2018 roster changes:
Out: Bradley Diallo, Clement Diop, Rafael Garcia, Jermaine Jones, Jon Kempin, Jack McBean, Jack McInerney, Raul Mendiola, Robbie Rogers, Brian Rowe, Nathan Smith, Pele Van Anholt, Jose Villarreal, Jamie Villarreal, Gyasi Zardes
In: David Bingham, Servando Carrasco, Rolf Feltscher, Tomas Hilliard-Arce, Ola Kamara, Perry Kitchen, Emrah Klimenta, Chris Pontius, Jorgen Skjelvik, Brian Sylvestre
Trialists: Cordell Cato, Julian Buescher
What to watch:
How will the defense perform? With six goals conceded in back-to-back preseason defeats to MLS clubs, obviously the back four needs solidifying. Of particular concern is the gap between Perry Kitchen and the pairing of Jorgen Skjelvik and Daniel Steres. Both center backs have struggled with stepping up to the ball and LA have been torched repeatedly as a result.
Also expect right back Rolf Feltscher to be under the microscope. Described as a “lockdown defender” by Schmid, the Venezuluan international struggled mightily vs. the Quakes, though the defender confessed to exhaustion from training afterwards.
It’s a valid point, but this Saturday the right back could be lining up against Whitecaps teen phenom Alphonso Davies, who’s got speed to burn.
Feltscher cannot afford to have another off-day.
Is Gio fit? There were times during last Saturday’s friendly when it appeared the Galaxy attack worked around dos Santos, which has some pundits wondering: Is Giovani dos Santos suffering from a lack of fitness? The El Tri attacker needs to play well to earn a spot in Mexico’s World Cup squad this summer, so clearly motivation is not the problem. For both his sake and the Galaxy’s, he had better figure it out quickly.
Predicted starting 11:
How to Watch:
Date/Time: Saturday Feb 24, 7 p.m.
Venue: StubHub Center