First leg against LA ends with fisticuffs, 1:0 deficit
October 30, 2011

New York Los Angeles

10.30.11 · Playoff

On a day after New Jersey was covered by an unexpected snowstorm, the Galaxy descended on Red Bull Arena and beat New York, 1:0, on a goal from former Metro Mike Magee. Metro now heads to Los Angeles knowing that only a two-goal win guarantees advancement. The game ended with a melee at midfield, caused by Rafa Marquez.

The lone goal of the match came in the 15 minute. David Beckham dropped a free kick below the Metro defense. Hands were thrown in the air as if to signal offside. The referee did not whistle, and Magee placed a shot past a partly-frozen Frank Rost. The jotunn did well the rest of the way, stopping a Landon Donovan breakaway.

Metro had their chances, especially in the second half. Joel Lindpere barely missed equalizing from close range after being setup by Dane Richards, thwarted by the arm of Josh Saunders. Carlos Mendes, of all people, sent a header barely over the bar. And in stoppage time, a Marquez shot was saved by Saunders.

And that will be all for Marquez, for as the final whistle blew, he stupidly threw a ball at the ever-whining Donovan. A fight broke out, with Juninho punching Stephen Keel. The Brazilian was sent off, together with Marquez, who decided to fall to the ground, faking an injury. Both will miss the away leg.

The season is not over; far from it. A one-goal deficit going into Los Angeles is not the end of the world, far from it, yet... yet...

Lineup: Rost, Miller, Ream, Keel, Mendes, Tainio, Marquez, Lindpere, Richards, Rodgers, Henry. Subs: Ballouchy.

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