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Robbie Keane hat-trick propels Galaxy over RSL

Robbie Keane (7)


A Robbie Keane hat-trick helped the Los Angeles Galaxy battle back from a goal down to beat Real Salt Lake, 4-2, at the Stub Hub center on Saturday night.

With the Galaxy (11-9-4, 37pts.) enjoying the majority of possession in the first-half of the game, it looked like only a matter of time before Los Angeles was able to find a way through Salt Lake’s defense. But the Royals (12-8-5, 41 pts.) were first to open the scoring with a nice combination play through the middle and a Joao Plata strike that went between Galaxy┬ágoalkeeper Jaime Penedo’s legs.

Plata found space just outside the Galaxy penalty area in the 53rd minute after Ned Grabavoy flicked a Nat Borchers pass to the quick forward. The RSL forward took a touch and then latched onto a shot found a way through Penedo’s legs, giving Salt Lake the lead against the run of play.

Los Angeles quickly responded, though, and leveled the score just three minutes later when Keane was able to curl a shot just past Salt Lake goalkeeper Nick Rimando. The Galaxy never looked back from that point on, putting three more goals behind one of Major League Soccer’s top-goalkeepers.

Keane added his second goal of the night in the 67th minute when he was able to turn an early cross from Sean Franklin, who came on in the second half, past Rimando. Keane was able to get the tap-in as the veteran strike knew to run to the near-post and got on the wrong side of the Real defense so he could latch onto Franklin’s early ball into the box.

LA’s newest Designated Player, Omar Gonzalaez, added the game-winning goal in the 75th minute and Keane put the game out of reach for Salt Lake in 86th minute with his third and final goal of the night.

RSL forward Robbie Findley came on in the second half and added a late consolation goal in the fifth minute of stoppage time, but time had run out on Salt Lake and the MLS’s top-team dropped three valuable road points to a close competitor in the Western Conference.

The win for the Galaxy put them four points behind RSL with a game in hand. It also gave the Galaxy some breathing in the Western Conference with the Vancouver Whitecaps and Seattle Sounders breathing down their necks fighting for a playoff spot.


  1. The LAG season is going to come down to WC qualifiers. RK will probably be out for all of them but maybe if the USA clinches it in September LD and OG will be free in October. If the LAG are still in it after the October WC dates I think they will win MLS cup.

    • Oh and one more thing. The fact that Mike McGee would have been available for the WC dates and probably been able to be kept fresh before them shows the total idiocy of the Galaxy trading him away.

      • Mike Magee for Robbie Rogers is MLS most lopsided trade in the leagues short history. That trade and Omar’s dp contract are the best news for the rest of the western conference.

        Of course ld might leave LA next year opening up a new dp alot for la

  2. L.A. clearly wanted this one more. RSL’s passing at times was passable and at others was downright awful. Javi and Sabo both looked gassed…..

  3. Suggest Bruce runs some corner kick drills in practice this week, the Galaxy had so many corners with so little effect (yes I know one goal came off a corner) but seriously let’s do something different, keep the defense on thier heels.

    • yea its ridiculous. LA would probably be in first with a lot of space in between them and the rest of the league if these last minute gaffes didn’t occur…

    • I think they tried something new on corners last night. In first half, they ran Omar to near post but Landon sent the ball to Leonardo on the back post using Omar as the decoy a couple times. In the second half, Landon sent the ball to Omar at the near post and it worked to perfection.

  4. Nice comment about Keane and Donovan. Big fish in a little pond. I was right about Penedo getting the call in net and that is where he played. I remember seeing Beckham and thought he does not belong here..the other players are not playing fast enough for him. Beck’s was another big fish in a little pond.

    • Increase the salary cap a little bit, maybe a 2 to 3 million increase. It will help get / retain better mid-level players. Give each team 1 more DP for a total of 3 DP’s. Then allow teams to trade DP slots if they wish and allow teams to add 2 more DP’s through trades to have a maximum of 5 DP’s.

      You’ll start to see some top end teams that can and will spend money like Galaxy, Seattle, and New York … and you’ll see teams build with strong mid-level plus players with not so pricey DP’s like RSL and Houston.

      As the league expands to more teams, they’ll need this to help bring in / retain quality players, otherwise, the product will get thinned out and be uneasy on the eyes.

      • yea im not looking forward to these expansion drafts coming up, this league is starting to feel a bit diluted and those are going to hurt it. you cant build serious depth, allowing a few players to go, with such a ridiculous salary cap.

      • How can it feel diluted when each conference has three wins (9 pts)between first place and 9th place?
        This is the most equitable year as far as talent goes in the past 10 years. The competition is steep.

  5. Keane and Donovan are just not even playing the same sport as everyone else in the league, even guys like Henry. It’s some Matrix-level s#!t…


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