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Stats: Does Baggio Husidic need to start for LA Galaxy?

Photo: Lincolnblues

The LA Galaxy got the 2015 MLS season off to a perfect start as they beat Chicago Fire 2-0 in the season opener last Friday but things might not have panned out so well had Baggio Husidic not entered the field on 62 minutes.

The departure of Marcelo Sarvas to the Colorado Rapids this offseason, coupled with the fact that Steven Gerrard won’t be joining the Galaxy until the summer means there is a central midfield role to be filled.

Husidic started the game on the bench as head coach Bruce Arena handed a surprise start to Kenney Walker in central midfield alongside Juninho.

But the 27-year-old took his chance with both hands as he hadn’t been on the field two minutes and his side had scored the first goal of the 2015 MLS season, with Jose Villarreal firing the reigning MLS Cup champions in front.

Husidic was the man who started that move and the Bosnian went on to grab the assist for the second goal of the game to seal all three points on 80 minutes.

His headed flick found Robbie Keane in the box and the Irishman fired home to make it 2-0. The Galaxy had lacked any real sting in their attacking play for much of the game but looked a much better side when Baggio Husidic was on the field.

A statistical comparison of LA Galaxy's three central midfielders from the game against the Chicago Fire (Stats via WhoScored.com)

A statistical comparison of LA Galaxy’s three central midfielders from the game against the Chicago Fire (Stats via WhoScored.com)

He may have only played 27 minutes but Husidic ended the game with three key passes (passes that led to a shot), and assist and 91% pass accuracy.

Walker failed to make a single key pass but did end the game with better passing accuracy. He also made more tackles than either Husidic or Juninho and his more defensive approach to the role is proven by the statistics.

That doesn’t mean Walker didn’t perform well but it was Husidic who sparked life into the Galaxy attack. In a successful partnership with Juninho, Husidic could roam further forwards as the Brazilian is more effective when defending. That is the combination Arena may look to start with against the Portland Timbers on Sunday night and beyond.

It is only one game and there are plenty more to come this season but until Gerrard arrives in Los Angeles, Baggio Husidic looks like he should be the man to sit alongside Juninho in midfield.

Do you think Baggio Husidic needs to start for LA Galaxy in midfield?

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About Louis East (1196 Articles)
Editor of MLSGB.com. Premier League and MLS reporter.

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