Wizards versus Galaxy preview
Since winning three of their first six matches, the Kansas City Wizards have come away with three points only once in their last five games.
The Los Angeles Galaxy have made sure almost none of their opponents escape with a victory -- but they can't seem to get one themselves.
The Galaxy will put their eight-game unbeaten streak on the line Saturday night at The Home Depot Center against the Wizards, but they'd prefer to extend it with only their second win in that stretch.
Los Angeles (1-1-8) has only lost once this season, yet finds itself tied for fifth in the Western Conference. The problem for the Galaxy is an inability to come away with more than one point in a match. Since losing their second game of the season, they have drawn seven of eight and four straight.
Coach Bruce Arena's club had a 20-9 shots advantage -- putting a season-high nine on goal -- in its matchup with FC Dallas last Saturday, but settled for a third consecutive 1-all tie.
"We didn't capitalize on our opportunities, didn't finish off plays," Arena said. "We have to play a little bit quicker and a little bit cleaner."
Landon Donovan scored his sixth goal -- tying him with Chicago's Brian McBride and Kansas City's Josh Wolff for the league lead -- but was upset the Galaxy couldn't pick up three points despite their heavy shot advantage.
"We're disappointed in the result," he said. "We're not disappointed necessarily in the way we played, but I think technically, if we were a little better, we win the game. I think that was a little frustrating."
Donovan will have a good chance to take sole possession of the goal-scoring lead on Saturday. Wolff will serve a one-game suspension after being sent off against Chivas USA last Saturday.
Wolff was issued a red card for lowering his head into the head of Chivas defender Mariano Trujillo after Trujillo gave him a hard foul from behind. In all, eight cards were issued -- six to the Wizards (4-4-3), including another red to midfielder Santiago Hirsig -- in their 1-all draw with the league leaders.
Wolff wasn't pleased with the ejection, sarcastically calling it "another outstanding job by the officials." A peeved coach Curt Onalfo stopped short of laying into the referees, and was pleased his team earned a draw.
"We had a whole bunch of chances, and then obviously the game changed with the two red cards," Onalfo said. "... You have to find a way to scrap and get out of there with a point. So, credit to our guys in getting a point against what everybody says is the league's best team."
Kansas City has scored five goals in its last three games, and may have an advantage in this match considering the absence of Galaxy defender Sean Franklin. Last year's MLS rookie of the year was injured May 17 in a 1-all draw with Columbus and will miss 4-6 months to repair a torn right upper hamstring tendon.
The Wizards haven't won at Los Angeles since 2004. The teams split two meetings last season.