BY DAN KARELL
Los Angeles Galaxy defeated Costa Rican side Herediano 4-1 (4-1 agg) on Wednesday evening at the Home Depot Center, advancing to the semi-finals of the CONCACAF Champions League where they’ll face defending champions Monterrey.
Four different players scored for the Galaxy, and there were many different bright stars for Los Angeles on the night. Robbie Keane’s incredible form has continued, helping set up teammates Jose Villarreal, Mike Magee, and Sean Franklin on many occations.
Los Angeles scored their first goal from the head of Omar Gonzales, finishing unmarked at the far post with a textbook header in the 19th minute. Following the halftime break, it was a moment of inspiration that gave the Galacticos an important second.
The 19-year-old Villarreal, who has been in fine form recently, took on his defender in the 69th minute, spun around his right shoulder, and finished with a curling left footed strike from 25 yards into the far post. Herediano goalkeeper Daniel Cambronero had no chance.
Keane added a third in the 83rd minute, again finding his way through the defense of Herediano, and finishing low and hard past Cambronero. A fourth goal, in the 93rd minute of the match, came from a quickly taken free kick by Michael Stephens, passing to substitute Jack McBean, whose curling strike found the far side-netting.
Herediano’s Elias Aguilar scored one back in the 85th minute following Keane’s goal, but it was too little too late for the Costa Rica squad, who had been outplayed by the hosts all night.
The Galaxy will play the first leg of their semi-final tie with Monterrey at the Home Depot Center, between April 2-4. Midfielder Landon Donovan is supposed to return by then, and could feature in either of the legs against the defending champions.
Here are the match highlights: