Besides the absence of Omar Gonzalez and Josh Saunders, there really isn’t much separating last year’s MLS Cup Champions from their current on-field product. Watching Saturday’s encounter, you can also derive that the problem, in this match at least, wasn’t on the backline.
So what is going on in LA LA Land? Surely, this is not the same team that dominated the league mere months ago. Landon Donovan, who can single-handedly carry a team on his back, was rendered a ghost by a rookie from St. Johns University. Robbie Keane was a non-factor in the box. Edson Buddle reverted to his almost-dangerous form as he was simply unable to connect on a chance. Mike Magee? Invisible. Juninho? Out of sorts.
Reverting to our previous point, this is an outstanding combination of talent – on paper. The on-field product has been as weak as it was in their short lived CONCACAF Champions League run.
Something has gone awry in LA, and Bruce Arena needs to find the proper catalyst to right the ship.