The race for the 2016 MLS Cup continues as Bruce Arena’s LA Galaxy and Pablo Mastroeni’s Colorado Rapids do battle at the StubHub Center in Carson, Calif. in the first leg of the 2016 MLS Western Conference Semifinals on Sunday, Oct. 30. One player that is due to show up for a strong afternoon is Emmanuel Boateng, who featured in the Galaxy’s 3-1 win over Real Salt Lake in the knockout round.
“He’s a young player. 22-years-old.,” said Arena.“You have your ups and downs during the season, but he’s got such a great attitude, a very likeable and personable guy. He’s competed throughout the season. He’s a good professional. We think obviously over time, he’s going to become a real good player. There’s obviously things he can do still to improve, but he’s got the right kind of attitude to get better. He’s worked real hard this year to position himself where he is today.”
“Every sport has a different collection of players that make a team better. If I can use my NBA analogies, there’s the right pieces around LeBron James with Cleveland. It’s like that in every sport. You can’t have 11 Robbie Keane’s on the field and you can’t have 11 Emmanuel Boateng’s on the field so you have to have the right balance. When there are other young players like Ema, committed to work and complimenting the other players, I think it really helps the team. Today, he was a complimentary player. He took the game into his hands for a while in that first half and scored two great goals.”
“I think guys have trusted me a little bit more and given me the confidence to take the defense on and make the game simple for me,” said Boateng. “Everyone is trying to help me with my runs and hearing a little bit from everybody.”
Kickoff is scheduled for 2 p.m. PT/5 p.m. ET. The Live Blog begins at 12 p.m. PT/3 p.m. ET. Keep it right here on The Stoppage Time, powered by Azteca Soccer, for more world football news. Stay connected on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.