The Seattle Sounders and LA Galaxy will square off in the 2015 MLS Playoffs Knockout Round on Wednesday, October 28th. This will be the fourth time in seven seasons that Seattle and LA will face each other in playoffs. The Sounders are looking to get past the Galaxy in the playoffs for the very first time.
The first time these two teams squared off in the playoffs was way back on October 31, 2010 at Qwest Field (now known as CenturyLink Field). It was a rather even affair until Edson Buddle scored a beautifully well placed goal in the 38th minute. That would be all of the scoring in the first leg of the Conference semifinals.
In the second leg, the Galaxy quickly dispatched the Sounders with two goals in the first 27 minutes of the match from Buddle and Omar Gonzalez respectively. The Sounders were able to pull one back in the 85th minute when the Steve Zakuani scored the Sounders first ever playoff goal in their fourth playoff game.
The second time these two faced off was back in the 2012 Western Conference Finals. The winner would move on to MLS Cup Final. The first match was played in Carson, CA and the Galaxy jumped all over the Sounders. Robbie Keane got the Galaxy on the board first in the 46th minute. Mike Magee made it 2-0 in the 64th minute and Keane completed his brace just three minutes later in the 67th minute. This was the second straight year that the Sounders gave up three goals in the first leg.
Leg two was placed in Seattle on November 18, 2012. The Sounders got on the board first in the 12th minute when Eddie Johnson found the back of the net. It appeared that the Sounders had struck again early in the first half, but Johnson was ruled to be offside. Replays showed that he may not have been. In the 57th minute, the Sounders got on the board again when Zach Scott found the back of the net. It appeared that the Sounders were close to pulling off an incredible, but Adam Johansson was whistled for a hand ball in the box and Keane calmly converted to put the Galaxy up 4-2 on aggregate.
In 2014, the Galaxy and Sounders were clearly the two best teams in MLS. They battled on the final day of the regular season for the Supporters’ Shield that Seattle eventually won. Everyone picked these two to meet in the Conference finals and neither team disappointed. The Sounders advanced to the conference finals by the newly implemented away goals rule. The Sounders and FC Dallas played to a 1-1 draw in Frisco and a 0-0 draw at home. Ironically enough, the new rule that sent them through eventually sent them home as well.
The first leg of the conference finals was played in Carson, CA on November 23rd. They only goal that was scored in the first leg came in the 52nd minute from Marcelo Sarvas. The Sounders had their chances in Carson, but were unable to get that one goal back.
During the second leg, the Sounders jumped out to an early 1-0 in the 26th minute after Brad Evans scored the opening goal. Just six minutes later, Clint Dempsey extended the lead to 2-0 in the 32nd minute. The Sounders looked to be on their way to their first ever MLS Cup, but Juninho broke the Sounders and their fans hearts with a goal in the 54th minute. It would be the final goal of the match and the Sounders were sent home again by the Galaxy.
If there is ever a time for the Sounders to face the Galaxy in the playoffs, the time is now. LA is coming off a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Sporting KC. They have to travel midweek for a playoff game and have only won two games on the road so far in all of 2015. The Sounders seem to finally have a fully healthy squad. It appears that LA can’t score except for Keane.
If LA cannot get their ducks in row, the Seattle Sounders will finally be able to exorcise their playoff demon in the LA Galaxy.