The Los Angeles Galaxy have been afforded a unique opportunity to play the two teams that eliminated them from both domestic cup competitions last year in the same week. The Galaxy have already accomplished half of the task when they dispatched the Minnesota Thunder on Wednesday night in the U.S. Open Cup semifinals.
This Saturday, the Galaxy travel to Kansas City to take on the Wizards for the first time this season. The last time the two teams met was in the Western Conference Championship, a game the Wizards won 2-0, ending L.A.'s 2004 season.
This year, Kansas City was moved to the Eastern Conference, so the Galaxy will get their first chance at redemption with only five games left on their schedule. Despite having just less than a year to mull over last season's loss, Galaxy newcomer Landon Donovan says the word revenge hasn't crept into the locker room just yet.
"I haven't heard it yet," said Donovan. "I'm sure in the next couple of days we'll think about it. The problem is we have so many games you really can't think about it."
Saturday's game will be the second game of the week for the Green and Gold. After clinching a spot in the Open Cup Final, the Galaxy must now switch their focus to the league standings. Right now, revenge plays second fiddle to picking up points, regardless of who the opponent is.
"The three points is very important to maintain at the very least second place and to try and gain some ground against San Jose," said head coach Steve Sampson. "We know we have a lot of ground to make up. But the most important thing is that we continue to play well as a team heading into the playoffs."
One area that has looked up for the Galaxy is the offense. The Green and Gold have scored nine goals in their last two games -- after taking the previous six matches to hit for the same total.
Hercules Gomez is responsible for four of the Galaxy goals in the last two games -- and joked around after Wednesday night's Open Cup win about having any goals left in his legs.
"I hope so," said Gomez, laughing almost in disbelief at his recent goal-scoring run.
But, he added: "Kansas City is a really tough team. They just came off a loss so they're going to be looking to redeem themselves. It's another road game for us and we have to look to redeem ourselves even more, and our road record."
Greg Daurio is a contributor to MLSnet.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.