Avid followers of Major League Soccer won’t need persuading as this is going to be big. But for those less familiar with MLS, here are five reasons why you have to watch this one:
1. Landon Donovan is looking to end his career by lifting his sixth MLS CupEmbed from Getty Images
This is the finale for LA Galaxy’s Landon Donovan. The US Soccer legend has enjoyed an incredible career and could end it by lifting his sixth MLS Cup and fourth with the Galaxy in his final game before retirement. All eyes will be on Donovan and he will need to handle the pressure to help LA across the line in front of their own fans.
2. Lee Nguyen is looking to end a sensational year on a highEmbed from Getty Images
Without Lee Nguyen, New England Revolution would not be preparing to play in this game. The playmaker has been incredible all year, scoring 20 goals in 36 appearances so far and will want to end a memorable campaign by lifting the Revolution’s first ever MLS Cup trophy.
3. LA Galaxy have not lost at home since the opening day of the season in MarchEmbed from Getty Images
The Galaxy’s last home loss was nine months ago on March 9 in a 1-0 loss to Real Salt Lake. They have been incredible at StubHub Center and have kept a clean sheet in five of their last seven games there. The fact that the final will be played on home soil gives the Galaxy a major advantage but the Revs aren’t afraid of expressing themselves on the road. New England have netted 13 goals in their last five away from home and have won four of those games.
4. There have been at least three goals in eight of New England’s last nine gamesEmbed from Getty Images
The Revs like scoring – a lot. But they are also vulnerable at the back and that’s why their games usually deliver plenty of entertainment. There have been 17 goals in their four playoff games so far and they should go to Los Angeles looking to play their usual free-flowing football. There were six goals in the regular season meeting between these two at StubHub Center as the Galaxy won 5-1 and we could be set for a goalscoring feast on Sunday night too.
5. Major League Soccer is only getting betterEmbed from Getty Images
This has been the best MLS season to date in terms of playing quality across the league and every team that made the playoffs had a genuine case for a place in this season’s MLS Cup Final. But it’s LA Galaxy and New England Revolution who have earned the chance to lift the 2014 title. The league is improving year on year and the next campaign will see 20 teams playing, as New York City FC and Orlando City SC are the latest expansion franchises to get involved. If you don’t follow MLS already, you should be, and Sunday’s final will show you why.
Be sure to check out the MLSGB TV Show as the team preview the big game: