The LA Galaxy are setting out to have a party on Saturday, but they also have a tricky game to kick off the summer portion of their 2021 season.
The Galaxy will host the Seattle Sounders in the teams’ return to action following a three-week break from MLS play, and the rematch is a bit bigger with Seattle handing LA their biggest loss of the Greg Vanney era, the Sounders previously winning 3-0 up in Seattle.
While the Galaxy were perhaps understandably cagey about their tactical plans against the Sounders when talking to reporters on Wednesday, everybody was excited to talk about the potential for a full house at Dignity Health Sports Park for the game, for the first time since March 2020.
“I think it’s gonna be awesome. I totally forgot about that, it’s gonna be full capacity,” midfielder Sebastian Lletget told reporters. “Having everybody in there, I think it’s gonna be a sellout crowd, I’m sure everybody’s excited just to be all together again and and feel that energy, it’s gonna be contagious. I think as soon as we step out on the field, warm-ups where we’re definitely gonna feel it. And yeah, it’s just an exciting time. Everybody’s had a really struggling year and a half as far as COVID. So kind of getting over that hump, you know, and hopefully we can give our fans a win.”
LA didn’t want to dwell on the pros or cons of having the long break with the team off to a good start to the season, and Vanney said the conditions will be the same for both teams coming in.
“Both teams are kind of dealing with similar issues in a way through the course of our build up to this,” Vanney said. “We tried to add in some 11-v-11, some competitive moments just to try to keep the rhythm of things, but nothing is like playing with your stadium being close to full again which we haven’t seen in a long time. So, my estimation here is that the guys are going to be very excited to be back in front of the energy that’s going to be in the stadium and that’s going to have them kind of amped up. So it’s just important again that we play smart at the beginning, we don’t get too many numbers going high we don’t get too drawn into the game that we have to play with discipline and we have to play a smart game against a very good team.”
The entire squad is in training right now aside from Augustine Williams and Carlos Harvey, who are both on their way back from international duty. Vanney said that captain Jonathan dos Santos is still working his way back from a calf strain and may or may not be ready to feature against the Sounders, eventually listing dos Santos’ status as questionable.
Chicharito had a simple message for the fans when asked what he would tell them ahead of Saturday’s clash.
“The only message is we are so happy to find that you can finally come back and support us,” the striker said. “It’s the only thing that is in my mind, in my feelings. I think I speak from the team that we are so happy to finally we are gonna have that environment, even though in the other games that we went they felt like already soccer with the crowd, with fans, but now hopefully we can be at full capacity. It’s going to be amazing, that you all fans are going to be back with us.”
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