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Should red cards be taken seriously in preseason games?

Aleksandar Katai’s ejection left the LA Galaxy flummoxed.

MLS: 2020 MLS Portraits USA TODAY Sports

The LA Galaxy had a pretty interesting preseason friendly on Saturday, hosting Toronto FC in an open-door game at Dignity Health Sports Park and falling 2-1.

Chicharito made his debut for the Galaxy and here’s his “all touches” video:

And Cristian Pavon took the headlines with this solo goal, slicing through TFC’s defense in the 37th minute to make it 1-0:

But the surprise was that Pavon’s goal came after LA went down to 10 men, with Aleksandar Katai getting his marching orders with a straight-red card following a tackle.

This raises an interesting question: Should red cards “count” in preseason? Typically in closed-door scrimmages, teams that get red cards usually ignore them and the teams continue full-strength, with the offending player exiting for the rest of the match. Sometimes there are exceptions — there have been MLS scrimmages that have ended in scuffle/brawls, the teams just abandoning the match midstream and taking the bad blood to the regular season.

The Galaxy were upset at having to play a man down for most of the match, but after the game, Guillermo Barros Schelotto spun it favorably, claiming his team played better down a player and that it was good practice for the season ahead.

So, should red cards be taken seriously in the preseason? Even with a paying crowd, should the standard be to play close to the book or should they be looking for teams to get ready for the preseason above all?

More news for your Tuesday:

  • Godfather reaches eMLS Series Two quarterfinals: The second event of the 2020 eMLS season took place over the weekend in Portland, and the Galaxy’s player, Guiseppe “Godfather” Guastella, reached the knockout rounds, falling on day two to LAFC’s player in a narrow 1-0 loss. Godfather is 6th in league standings through two events, heading into eMLS Cup in Austin next month, where he’s already qualified to play in the championship event.
  • Alan Franco rumor: John Rojas has been hard at work following the rumor that the Galaxy will be signing the Argentine defender. His last update, on Monday, claims Franco has pushed a deal through, although it sounds like he’ll join up late, staying with Independiente through Mar. 8.
  • Antuna struggling with Chivas: Uriel Antuna made a big move to Chivas this offseason, and so far, the grass is not very green in Guadalajara, with fans turning on the Mexican winger, particularly over the weekend. Given how pressure-packed Liga MX is, and add how much extra pressure Chivas gets, it’s likely been a rude awakening for Antuna as he has yet to score or assist in eight games played.
  • New Corner of the Galaxy episode: Josh and Kevin recap Saturday’s preseason loss and talk all things Galaxy, naturally. They’ve also got a meetup going down at the stadium this coming Saturday.

Today’s question: What would you do with red cards in preseason? Ignore them altogether, treat the games like the real thing, something in between? Let’s chat about it in the comments below!