The goal always seemed to be coming for the LA Galaxy, and unlikely figure Jack McBean did indeed find net in the 83rd minute as the champs finally overcame a heroic defensive stand from 10-man Chivas USA.
But who saw the Goats’ goal coming?
Carlos Alvarez got onto Carlos Borja’s well-placed ball at the back post in the 89th minute as Jose Luis ‘Chelis’ Sanchez Sola saw his club make memories during his first spin in the LA Derby, a 1-1 draw at the Home Depot Center.
Chivas USA had held on brilliantly a man down for 40 minutes and change. With Robbie Keane demonstrating some outstanding hold-up play to make the Galaxy offense go, balls flashed repeatedly in front of Chivas USA goal. And still the Goats held. It did until McBean’s header just eluded Chivas ‘keeper Dan Kennedy, seeming to settle the final contest of MLS rivalry weekend.
But Eric Avila sprung Borja wonderfully down the right side a few minutes later to start the dramatic, game-tying sequence.
Alvarez (pictured), a rookie who grew up in East L.A., was the club’s first-round draft pick this year.
Of course, the original moment that mattered in this one was Joaquin Velázquez’s 40th minute ejection.
The official report says referee Ricardo Salazar tossed the Chivas USA center back on two yellow cards, one for a foul on Galaxy midfielder Colin Clark and a second yellow for dissent.
Still, it look like a tough call on the Goats, who saw one Galaxy header beat Kennedy and ping off the crossbar but had otherwise kept the match fairly even to that point.
And whatever Velazquez did to earn the red, could it have been as bad as Sean Franklin’s ridiculously high boot in the first half? Remember just a few days back when Manchester United’s Nani was thrown out of one seriously high profile match for, well, probably for less?
(That’s apples to oranges in so very many ways, obviously, but if we’re talking about high feet, yellows and reds, that’s the one that will come up now, along with Nigel de Jong’s bit of brutality in the 2010 World Cup final.)
Until the full highlight pack is available, here are the two moments mentioned; first the red card:
And then Franklin’s foul, which happened earlier, and for which the Galaxy right back was booked by Salazar: