LA Galaxy “disappointing” in 1-0 loss at RSL

After a surly, slow performance from Los Angeles Galaxy, Dejan Joveljić thought he had saved LA for the second straight week with a 91-minute equalizer for a 1-1 equalizer against Real Salt Lake in Utah on Saturday. However, VAR would have other ideas as Derrick Williams was ruled offside and the Galaxy were set to suffer their first loss in five games. Although it was a bitter pill to swallow, Galaxy head coach Greg Vanney was over it right after the game Galaxy ‘disappointing’ in 1-0 loss.

LA Galaxy ‘disappointing’ in 1-0 loss at RSL

“I thought it was a pretty disappointing day for the most part. From an energy level, game speed level, things like that. I thought it was just a little slow. In the first half we played a bit underwater. The ball wasn’t moving fast enough,” Vanney explained of his team’s performance in the opening frame.

problems in the first half

Vanney would also blame the team’s poor start on a bus that was late to pick up the Galaxy, allowing for little warm-up time.

But as poor as they were or the late bus made them, the Galaxy improved in the second frame and showed much more intensity in the opening minutes. When they were at their best and seemed to have the most control over the game, they conceded.

Real Salt Lake defender Marcelo Silva headed in from a Pablo Ruiz corner kick in the 49th minute between Galaxy keeper Jonathan Bond and Julian Araujo. It would be one of RSL’s only opportunities as Silva took full advantage of Bond’s miss on the cross to score.

The Galaxy would regain control of the game but couldn’t find the equalizer. As mentioned about Galaxy’s game so far this season, lots of possession went nowhere. The final third called for a killer final ball that no Galaxy player has ever been able to deliver on a regular basis.

Joveljić and Grandsir ignite the galaxy

Vanney would try to change the offense in the 61st minute, bringing on Sacha Kljestan, Samuel Grandsir and Joveljić.

The latter two players immediately made the Galaxy look dangerous. The way Grandsir and Joveljić transformed the dynamic will have Galaxy fans clamoring to get started.

A beautiful pass from Joveljić to Grandsir forced a good save from RSL keeper Zac MacMath and should have leveled the score.

Moments later, in the middle of injury time, the Galaxy thought they had finally equalized through Joveljić.

Raheem Edwards found Joveljić with a perfectly weighted ball in the middle of the box, who brought the ball down gracefully with his chest, bounced it once and hit it with a half-volley into the left corner of MacMath’s goal.

VAR becomes VAR

And just as LA. thought they had escaped a dry game in the desert by a point, VAR canceled it because William was flagged for offside. The fact that Joveljić’s goal didn’t last will matter little to G’s supporters, who will keep asking for Joveljić to be included in the starting XI. The Serb finished the game in a draw, creating three chances in just 29 minutes.

Joveljić’s no-goal will have Galaxy on edge with a controversial but probably right call.

Like Vanney, midfielder Sacha Kljestan pointed to problems in the first half as the culprit for the defeat.

“I think we didn’t play the way we should play in the first half and I think sometimes we try to get the last pass too early and too often,” admitted Kljestan.

Kljestan made no attempt to defend the poor performance either. For him, a delayed bus could neither be equated nor justified.

“These are excuses when we talk about the height or being late to the game and I don’t like to look for excuses. Maybe we had a slow start today but ultimately I think we did enough in the second half to get back into the game and unfortunately we couldn’t score.

Galaxy fans won’t want excuses either, and based on today’s performance, they’ll keep asking Joveljić to start alongside Javier “Chicharito” Hernández.

Vanney and Los Angeles have a week to figure out what went wrong in Utah before heading to Texas on Sunday to take on first-seeded Austin FC.

Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Galaxy.

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