Competition: Major League Soccer – LA Galaxy vs. Montreal Impact
Venue: StubHub Center – Friday, April 7 – 22:30 ET (03:30 BST)
Match Odds: LA Galaxy 4/6 – Draw 11/4 – Montreal 15/4
LA Galaxy welcome Montreal Impact to StubHub Center on Friday night as Week 6 kicks off with a battle between two sides that have combined for just one win in eight games so far this season.
The Galaxy started with back-to-back home defeats but looked to be back on track after a 2-1 win at RSL. However, last weekend’s 4-2 defeat at Vancouver worsened their problems and they come into the game in 10th place in the West.
Head coach Curt Onalfo needs to start getting the Galaxy firing. They may have lost some key players over the offseason but the squad is much better than results suggest so far. A first home win of the season is undoubtedly needed on Friday.
Montreal are also desperate for a win. They’ve not picked up a victory yet through four games and are likely to struggle without Ignacio Piatti once again, with the playmaker sidelined with a groin problem.
The Impact have drawn three-straight games but are 10th themselves over in the East and must start climbing the table to prevent the need for a late-season surge if they are to be playing postseason football again.
Montreal have not won away at Western Conference opposition since the opening day of last season and face an uphill task if they are to take anything away from their long journey to California on Friday, even if the Galaxy are underperforming.
This will be the sixth MLS meeting between the two sides since Montreal entered the league five years ago. Both sides have won win each, with the Impact winning last season’s lone meeting 3-2 in an entertaining shootout at Stade Saputo.
LA Galaxy remain without Robbie Rogers and Sebastian Lletget but should have everyone else available for their third home game of the campaign. Giovani Dos Santos, Ashley Cole and Gyasi Zardes all returned at Vancouver last week and should start on Friday night.
Montreal will be without Victor Cabrera after the centre-back was sent off in last week’s draw in Chicago. Ignacio Piatti is set to miss out again with a groin injury, while Andres Romero and Shamit Shome are also sidelined. Laurent Ciman is listed as ‘questionable’ but is expected to be passed fit in time to return to the side here.
LA Galaxy’s form: L/L/W/L
Montreal Impact’s form: L/D/D/D
Key Stat: Montreal Impact have yet to score an away goal at LA Galaxy in MLS, although they’ve only ever conceded one at StubHub Center in two previous trips.
Key Player: Giovani Dos Santos – The Mexican star scored the Galaxy’s first goal of the season but hasn’t had a consistent run in the team yet because of injuries. He will be hoping to get his head down now and start firing LA up the Western Conference.
LA Galaxy 2-1 Montreal Impact – This is certain to be a cagey game between two out-of-form sides that know they must go for all three points in Friday night’s clash. LA have the pressure of being at home and must deliver for their own fans, while Montreal are not going to be at full strength because of injuries and suspensions, which could cost them as they look set to remain without a win this term.