Columbus defeated the Galaxy on Saturday 2-0 thanks to a good bit of strategy and some nice play from some unusual suspects. The Crew were missing 5 regulars and yet they still came away with a victory.
“But the Galaxy were missing Beckham!” some will say. I know, but the Crew were missing more key cogs and yet they shut out a team they’re supposed to shut out (if everyone is healthy.) When all the chips are down the Crew can find a way to win and that was proven on Saturday.
When I said that strategy was everything I didn’t think I was would be speaking this prophetically. In an effort to tip-toe around their lack of usual starters the Crew sent out a much different looking team (and I think) shocked L.A. The Galaxy (as expressed by the astonished look on Donovan Ricketts face) had no idea what to do with Columbus and the Crew took advantage of the surprise that rippled through the Galaxy.
This is one of those times when I have to ask again “Where’s Landon? Where’s Sean Franklin? Where’s the leadership?” I know I keep harping on this point, but you have to have strong leaders in place if you are going to overcome getting kamikazed by a team that looked REALLY depleted.
It’s kind of a shame that the game wasn’t more competitive because it looked to be quite a clash leading in. Now that the clash wasn’t so, we are left to wonder how this effects the MLS playoff chase.
Chicago plays L.A. on Friday. If Chicago wins they swap spots with the Galaxy and now the Galaxy are teetering on the edge. If Colorado wins on Saturday then they will be tied with the loser of the Chicago/L.A. match from Friday. Haha….I think we have a race boiling here. We know that homefield really helps in the playoffs, but even more important is getting in.
Try playing "Shell Game" with these 4 clubs and see which one is left standing...
Closer to the bottom you have New England, D.C., Toronto, and Salt Lake all feeling the push from the top. Imagine the scenario: If you have D.C. win today and New England loses tomorrow then you have D.C. leapfrogging New England. Take it a step further: If that happens again on Saturday then you see that New England is getting desperately behind D.C., and fast!
This is the time of year when people start speculating “Who will squeak into the playoffs!?” Honestly, I have no idea, but I know one thing: If I’m even remotely correct then some combo of N.E., D.C., Toronto, and Salt Lake will be vying for that final playoff spot all the way until October 24th & 25th.
The better question is this: Who will still be standing in the Royal Cage Match at the bottom of the playoff standings come the end of October? If you know better than me I’d like to hear, because right now anybody could be there and anybody could be gone…just like that.