Competition: Major League Soccer – LA Galaxy vs. Philadelphia Union
Venue: StubHub Center – Saturday, June 20 – 22:30 ET (03:30 BST – Sunday, June 21)
Match Odds: LA Galaxy 4/7 – Draw 3/1 – Philadelphia Union 9/2
The Galaxy come into this game looking to end a run of three games without a win (D2, L1), although they picked up a valuable point in a 1-1 draw away at the Columbus Crew last time out.
Bruce Arena’s side have struggled to get going in 2015 so far as 22 points from their opening 17 games currently leaves them sixth in the Western Conference and clinging on to a playoff spot.
LA have only won two of their last ten matches (D5, L3) and also lost their 23-game unbeaten streak in MLS regular season home matches when they lost 1-0 to Vancouver Whitecaps in their last match on home soil.
Philadelphia Union arrive in Los Angeles off the back of a two-week break from MLS action. Their most recent league fixture was a disappointing 2-1 defeat at home to New York City.
Before that defeat, the Union had been on an impressive run of form that had seen them secure wins over DC United, New York Red Bulls and Columbus Crew.
Jim Curtin will be urging his side to try and replicate the performances from those games in order to try and get something out of a game that he knows will be tough despite the Galaxy’s stuttering start to the 2015 campaign.
Both sides successfully secured their place in the fifth round of the US Open Cup in midweek, but attentions will now turn back to MLS as LA and Philadelphia continue the fight for playoff places in their respective conferences.
The last meeting between these two saw the LA Galaxy run out as convincing 4-1 winners over Philadelphia. The Union have only ever beaten the Galaxy once in seven attempts (D1, L5), which came via a 2-1 success on the same ground back in July 2012.
LA Galaxy goalkeeper Brian Perk (ankle) remains out, while Todd Dunivant (leg) and Edson Buddle (groin) are both doubts. Bradford Jamieson IV will be tested before the game to see if he’s recovered from concussion.
Philadelphia Union will be without Steven Vitoria and Antoine Hoppenot (both hamstring), while there’s also doubts over the fitness of Sebastien Le Toux (knee), Michael Lahoud (leg), Fernando Aristeguieta (leg) and Conor Casey (leg).
LA Galaxy’s last five in MLS: W/W/D/L/D
Philadelphia Union’s last five in MLS: W/W/L/W/L
Key Stat: Philadelphia Union have failed to win nine of their last 10 away matches in MLS.
Key Player: C. J. Sapong – He’s been excellent recently, netting three times in his last four matches. The Union will be looking to him for inspiration if they’re to get anything out of this one.
LA Galaxy 2-1 Philadelphia Union – The Galaxy should just edge this because of their home advantage. The Union don’t tend to travel particularly well and that could be their downfall.