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Rocky Night: LA Galaxy 0, Colorado Rapids 2

Galaxy lose first game of local return to play phase.

MLS: Colorado Rapids at LA Galaxy Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

The LA Galaxy lost their first game since the local return to play of the 2020 MLS season Saturday, falling 2-0 to the Colorado Rapids at Dignity Health Sports Park.

The game had considerable echoes of a March match against the Vancouver Whitecaps, going down to a team they had expected to dominate, a Galaxy player picking up a red card in the final 15 minutes, and the attack too dulled to trouble their opponent on the night.

Guillermo Barros Schelotto went with a familiar group on the night to start, with Efrain Alvarez in the XI, Julian Araujo at right back again with Rolf Feltscher hurt, and Chicharito and Jonathan dos Santos on the bench to begin the match.

The first half was sleepy, with both teams getting time on the ball but Colorado getting plenty of run. In the 40th minute, they found a breakthrough, as Cole Bassett redirected Sam Vines’ cross in to give the Rapids the lead.

The teams went to halftime with Colorado leading 1-0 and perhaps just edging their control the game through the first 45.

Ethan Zubak almost scored in the 52nd minute, as his nifty redirect off a low cross was goalbound, but Colorado goalkeeper William Yarbrough made a reaction save to keep the Galaxy off the board.

Dos Santos and Chicharito entered the game at the same time, in the 54th minute.

It looked like the Rapids were going to score in the 65th minute, Jonathan Lewis’ shot clanging off the crossbar, and after it was recirculated it looked like Andre Shinyashiki was about to score with a tap-in around the corner, but David Bingham made a huge save to keep the Galaxy in the match, his stop coming almost out of nowhere.

Araujo picked up two yellow cards in three minutes, and was sent off in the 75th minute, to make the Galaxy’s climb for a result even more uphill.

The Rapids sealed the result with a goal bundled over the line in the 78th minute by Lewis, after a solid buildup. The goal was initially waved off due to offside, but after a VAR review, it was reversed and the goal counted.

For it being one loss in six games, it’s not the end of the world in context for LA, but this performance and the lackluster 0-0 against the San Jose Earthquakes last time out is concerning. Were the Galaxy flying because they were playing favorable opposition? Because they were fresh and they aren’t anymore? Is this just a blip and nothing to worry about? All big questions that we’ll only learn the answers to with time.

The Galaxy take to the road for their next match, Wednesday against Real Salt Lake, for the teams’ first meeting of 2020. How will another fresh side to face go for LA? We’ll find out midweek.

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