Galaxy tie Real Madrid 'B' team 1-1
LAS ROZAS, Spain - The Los Angeles Galaxy earned a well deserved 1-1 draw against the "B" side of world powerhouse Real Madrid on Thursday at the Spanish Futbol Federation's Ciudad de Futbol in Las Rozas, Spain. Real Madrid's Barral scored their lone goal with a 17th minute penalty kick, but it was Galaxy forward Alan Gordon who scored the tying goal in the 82nd minute with assists from forward Michael Enfield and midfielder Guillermo Ramirez.
With the tie, the Galaxy completed their Iberian adventure playing three games in three days to finish the trip with a solid 1-1-1 record. The club will return to Los Angeles on Friday and resume training at The Home Depot Center on Monday, March 14.
"There are times a coach is very proud of his team, today is one of them," said Galaxy head coach Steve Sampson. "You went out and played your third game in as many days. I know you were very tired, but you still put out your best effort over that time. For that I am very proud of you."
Real Madrid produced the first scoring chance of the match in the 7th minute as Barral's attempt looked to sneak inside the right post, but was easily collected by Galaxy goalkeeper Steve Cronin, the first of five saves on the day in an impressive performance.
However, the Galaxy would respond with their first scoring chance of the match in the 9th minute, which began with midfielder Ned Grabavoy feeding Gordon down the right wing. Running onto the pass, Gordon collected it just before the endline, fired a low shot but had his near post shot go just wide.
In the 17th minute, Galaxy defender Ben Benditson was defending Real Madrid's Barral as he dribbled into the 18-yard box, but the rookie defender was whistled for a foul as he attempted to strip the ball loose. On the ensuing penalty kick, Barral stepped up and blasted a hard shot straight up the middle as the Galaxy's Cronin dove to his right.
Just before the half, Los Angeles' Josh Gardner sent a curving cross into the box for forward Joseph Ngwenya, who, battling a defender, barely missed the header as his defender got a piece of it clearing the ball to the top of the box. However, Grabavoy wound up and fired a low shot only to see it deflected wide at the last minute by a Real Madrid defender.
In the second half, the two sides came out strong as the Galaxy looked to score the equalizer and Real Madrid sought to extend their lead. In the 71st minute, Benditson found space down the right side, working his way into the offensive third of the field, and sent a cross into the box for Gordon. However, a Real Madrid defender beat Gordon to the ball clearing it over the endline for a Galaxy cornerkick. Galaxy forward Naldo broke free in the box powering a header that went just over the cross bar.
Los Angeles' Guillermo Ramirez came on as a substitute in the 64th minute, replacing teammate Paulo Nagamura, who until that point was the best player on the field. Not to be out done, Ramirez played to his strengths and impressed by contributing to the club's late equalizer.
In the 82nd minute, Ramirez started the sequence playing a sharp through ball up the left wing for Michael Enfield, who cut into the box, switched the ball from his right foot to his left, before laying a pass behind Real Madrid's defense. Losing his marker, Gordon ran onto the pass and hit a first time shot into the lower right corner of the goal, bringing L.A. even at one goal a piece.
LA - Gordon (Enfield, Ramirez) '82
RM - Barral (penalty kick) '17
Los Angeles Galaxy - Steve Cronin, Michael Umaña (Tyrone Marshall '64), Ugo Ihemelu, Troy Roberts, Ben Benditson, Herculez Gomez (Naldo '67), Paulo Nagamura (Guillermo Ramirez '64), Ned Grabavoy (Emerson Hartkopp '59), Josh Gardner, Joseph Ngwenya (Michael Enfield '57), Alan Gordon.
Real Madrid "B" - Not Available.