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It’s a slump: LA Galaxy 1, Seattle Sounders 3

Galaxy play like the road team at home in third consecutive loss.

MLS: Seattle Sounders FC at LA Galaxy Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

The LA Galaxy lost their third straight game and dropped to second-to-last in the Western Conference, after losing 3-1 to the Seattle Sounders Sunday at Dignity Health Sports Park.

In a game that played like a Sounders home game, Seattle controlled the run of play and demonstrated why they are likely the class of the Western Conference so far this season, while LA were second-best until they were in a deep hole and by that time, they couldn’t get out of it.

The Galaxy started with a now-familiar XI, effectively the first-choice group at the current moment.

Seattle grabbed the lead in the 12th minute, with Jordan Morris sending a low cross along the grass into the box, LA defender Nick DePuy getting a little touch on the ball that helped it reach Cristian Pavon, who tapped it in at the far post. DePuy was trying to clear the cross and didn’t get good contact while diving, but it backfired this time.

The visitors doubled their lead in the 38th minute, when Morris scored this time, taking a cross-field pass from Nicolas Lodeiro and beating Rolf Feltscher one-v-one on the break before a successful shot.

Just after the goal, Araujo picked up a yellow card, which means he’ll be suspended for the next match. But right after that, Chicharito made a good run and got a shot on target, but Seattle goalkeeper Stefan Frei was on the spot to block it.

Guillermo Barros Schelotto brought in Efrain Alvarez early in the second half, replacing the defensive-minded Araujo, as the Galaxy pushed for a goal to get back into the game. And they did push for goals, moving into Seattle’s box far more than in the first half and testing the Sounders, albeit without high-quality shots.

But the Sounders got a third goal just after the hour mark, with Cristian Roldan getting a ball over the top from Joao Paulo, then chipping Bingham on the counter to make it 3-0.

The only consolation of the night came late, as Sebastian Lletget headed in a cross in the 88th minute to make it 3-1 with the Galaxy on the board, finally.

I really think the Galaxy look tired as a group, as they played slow and could not get the job done on either side of the ball against a tough team. Yes, the Sounders are good, but if the Galaxy think they should be in the mix to be contenders, this measuring stick game showed they are way off that level and have a lot of work to do in a short amount of time. We’ll see if this is their form the rest of the way or if they can return to the refreshed, high-energy style that suited them well in the initial games in the local return to play phase this season.

The Galaxy get almost a week of rest before they are back in action, Saturday against the San Jose Earthquakes in Northern California. LA are struggling mightily, but some time to rest and train, and facing a still-winless Quakes side in the current phase of the season makes it certainly a winnable game for the Galaxy. Should be another fascinating California Clasico.

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