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LA Galaxy vs. Portland Timbers: In Search Of Production Against The Champs

Sebastian Lletget #17 of Los Angeles Galaxy battles Rodney Wallace #22 of Portland Timbers during Los Angeles Galaxy's MLS match against Portland Timbers at the StubHub Center on October 18, 2015 in Carson, California. The Portland Timbers won the match 5-2 October 18, 2015| Credit: Shaun Clark

To be the best, you have to beat the best, and for Bruce Arena’s Los Angeles Galaxy, a statement victory over Caleb Porter’s Portland Timbers may be what the doctor ordered. The Galaxy and Timbers clash is on Apr. 10 at StubHub Center, and Portland will look to rebound from a tough defeat away to Orlando City to the tune of 4-1 at the Citrus Bowl.

“I thought overall we played well,” Arena said of their scoreless draw with the Vancouver Whitecaps. “We were deficient in our ability to create a few more chances. Technically we could’ve been better in the last third of the field. Obviously, we’re playing on turf and maybe we’re not that comfortable on it, but that isn’t an excuse. On the other side, give Vancouver a lot of credit. They were very disciplined, they dropped their team back and got in good positions and did the job defensively.

“We could’ve been a little bit better, we have to play a little bit quicker. We were very poor on our crossing, we’ve got to do a better job getting players in front of the goal and in dangerous positions. Games like tonight where a team is dropped back and playing with numbers, it’s not going to be a perfect play. You know, we’re looking for the last pass, to walk the ball in the goal, but we need to shoot more from distance, we’ve got to deliver balls in front of the goal a lot earlier and just be better. But give our opponent credit; they did a good job defensively.”

“We definitely have to take our chances,” said forward Mike Magee. “When we do get crosses, they just weren’t on tonight, for whatever reason. In the grand scheme of things a point on the road is good, but I think we missed an opportunity to get three points tonight.

“I try to take the positives out of it, which we started well. We started pressing and getting after them, pre-red card, which is good. I don’t think they did that much last year and we definitely didn’t do that against Colorado. We’ll try to focus on that. The glaring problem is in the final third. I’ll try to blame it on the turf, but we’ve just got to get sharp.”

“Our goal was to press and we wanted to come away with three points, but anytime you can get a draw on the road it’s a good result,” said goalkeeper Brian Rowe. “I think as you start to get more and more games in a row it gets you into a good rhythm and you know how to prepare yourself best for the game, mentally and physically.

“I think the more games I string together, the more confidence I feel. I’ve been in the league for a couple of years now, I’ve played in a number of games. I think I’ve got my feet wet and it’s gotten past that point of having those nerves before games. I feel good out there.”

Kickoff is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. PT/9:30 p.m. ET. Our live blog begins at 4 p.m. PT/7 p.m. ET. Here are 10 Bold Predictions for the match between the LA Galaxy and Portland Timbers.

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  • Adam Kwarasey will make at least four saves.
  • Brian Rowe will make at least five saves.
  • No goals will be scored in the first 10 minutes.
  • A goal will be scored in the last 10 minutes and stoppage time.
  • At least 35 fouls will be whistled.
  • At least four cards will be issued.
  • Sebastian Lletget will score for LA Galaxy.
  • Gyasi Zardes will score for LA Galaxy.
  • Diego Valeri will score for Portland Timbers.
  • Fanendo Adi will score for Portland Timbers.

LA Galaxy 2, Portland Timbers 2

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