A second-half thriller between the LA Galaxy and the San Jose Earthquakes saw the visitors begin Heineken Rivalry Week with a 2-1 victory at Dignity Health Sports Park in Friday evening’s California Clasico.
The Earthquakes now have three wins in their past six games, while also moving to 10 matches unbeaten. For the Galaxy, it’s two straight losses at home within a four-day span, which could push them out of the Western Conference’s top three spots by the end of Week 21.
First-half heroics from Jonathan Bond stole the show early on, with the Galaxy goalkeeper making a pair of immaculate saves to deny Jeremy Ebobisse right before the halftime whistle to keep things scoreless. Bond’s show-stopping plays continued into the second half, producing another stunning double-save on Ebobisse and then San Jose defender Tanner Beason.
Then Ebobisse’s header in the 52nd minute marked the opener and his first with the club since being acquired via a trade with the Portland Timbers. And the game-winner arrived through Javier “Chofis” Lopez in the 71st minute after some nifty dribbling along the endline. Galaxy left back Niko Hamalainen was at fault for an own goal after Lopez danced in the box, only for his cross to ricochet past Bond.
The Galaxy clawed back into the match in the 65th minute, leveling at 1-1 through Victor Vazquez. The second-half substitute scored an Olimpico straight from the corner flag, evading San Jose defenders at the near post and scrambling past goalkeeper JT Marcinkowski.
All three goals came after the halftime whistle, and despite having home-field advantage, the Galaxy fell victim to the Earthquakes’ attacking press.
- 52′ – SJ – Jeremy Ebobisse |
- 65′ – LA – Victor Vazquez |
- 71′ – SJ – Niko Hamalainen (OG) |
- THE BIG PICTURE: This was an ideal result for San Jose, who avoided being swept by the Galaxy in this season’s Cali Clasico series, winning the third match between the rivals. With three points, they jump into playoff position in the Western Conference and occupy the No. 7 spot. For the Galaxy, it’s the first time they’ve lost two in a row this season – and both defeats came at home, including Wednesday’s 2-1 setback against Colorado. Not quite how Greg Vanney’s team drew this week up.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: This stunning double-save from Jonathan Bond right before the halftime break. Bond denied Ebobisse not once, but twice, in quick succession to keep things scoreless.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Jeremy Ebobisse. The newly acquired striker scored the opening goal and easily could have tallied two or three total were it not for Bond’s great goalkeeping.
- LA: Heineken Rivalry Week match | Saturday, August 28 at LAFC | 7:00 pm ET (FOX, FOX Deportes)
- SJ: Saturday, September 4 vs. Colorado Rapids | 10:00 pm ET (UniMas, TUDN, Twitter)
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