In Los Angeles’ previous two road matches, they struggled to get anything going in the final third of the pitch. Both of those, resulted in points dropped: a defeat to the Colorado Rapids and a draw against a ten-man Vancouver Whitecaps side.
But tonight, with a fully fit Giovani dos Santos and Steven Gerrard, the Galaxy ran wild, blitzing the Houston Dynamo for four goals in a 4-1 victory at the BBVA Compass Stadium. The aforementioned dos Santos had a first half brace with Baggio Husidic and Gyasi Zardes rounding off the scoring.
Houston starts match fast
Things, though, were not always rosy as Houston got off to the perfect start, scoring on 59 seconds. They won a corner and took it short. The ball eventually made its way to Alex who whipped a cross towards the back post. Daniel Horst was waiting and nodded the ball into the back of the net.
Galaxy score four unanswered
That lead lasted all but 3 three minutes as Los Angeles found their first away goal of the season. Two Houston defenders did not communicate as a ball bounced right through them. On the end waiting was dos Santos. The Mexican international was in tons of space, and dispatched his left footed shot behind Joe Willis for his first goal of the season.
The first time Steven Gerrard and Giovani dos Santos connected was in the 20th minute. The former played an inch-perfect pass that found the feet of dos Santos. The latter tried to send it back towards the goal mouth where Willis clawed it away. His punch though, was poor as it fell to Baggio Husidic. Husidic showed excellent awareness by chesting the ball down before placing his shot behind the Houston goalkeeper for the lead.
Los Angeles scored a third goal, the best of the lot, just on the other side of the half hour mark. Steven Gerrard connected with dos Santos once more in the 31st minute, making it count this time. Gerrard played a perfect ball, barely missing Alex’s leaping clearance attempt, towards dos Santos. The former Barcelona product took a superb touch to get into a bit of space before firing a volley past the hapless Dynamo goalkeeper.
Chances kept coming for the visiting side, when in the 43rd minute, Mike Magee had an opportunity to make it 4-1. He took one touch inside the area to settle the ball down, but his second touch failed him as he blasted his attempt well over the bar.
Bruce Arena’s men though, ended the first 45 minutes, deservedly on top. They capitalized on most of their opportunities in the final third of the pitch. Los Angeles also could have had four or five goals before the referee blew for halftime, in what was a dominant performance.
As the second half was just beginning to take shape, the Galaxy scored their fourth goal in the 49th minute. dos Santos was galloping down the right and found the run of Sebastian Lletget. The Northern California native hit an exquisite low cross which Gyasi Zardes tucked in on the half-volley.
Gerrard forced Willis to go full-stretch in the 73rd minute. He hit a long range effort that was always sailing above the cross bar, but it did not miss the top right corner by much. Houston also continued to threat, but never really tested Brian Rowe late as the 27-year-old put in a superb shift. Giles Barnes and Alex had possibilities to score go by the wayside as they both missed the target by some distance.
The Galaxy return to the StubHub Center where they will welcome in Real Salt Lake on Saturday night with the kickoff scheduled for 10:30 PM Est. Meanwhile, the Houston Dynamo will head to Columbus to take on the Crew at 7:30 PM Est on Saturday night.