CARSON, Calif. -- Fatigue was a story for the LA Galaxy after their 3-1 loss to Real Salt Lake. A story that RSL’s Javier Morales read like it was a fairy tale.
The creative midfielder, still recovering from a recent quadriceps injury, checked into match in the 66th minute and immediately exploited the weakness he saw in the Galaxy.
“They started to get tired,” Morales told MLSsoccer.com after the match. “[David] Beckham and [Landon] Donovan, they played in a game on Wednesday. So I tried to play behind Beckham. I think we had a little space there, and we had to take it.”
Take it they did. Morales operated often unmarked and with plenty of green around him to maneuver the ball through the midfield to the strikers, Fabian Espindola and Alvaro Saborio.
Less than 15 minutes after checking in, Morales was left alone on the left flank. He played a simple ball down the line to Espindola, then made a long, late run into the box, where he eventually put away the winning goal after Espindola’s cross ricocheted around. It was Morales’s first goal since returning from the devastating ankle injury that saw him miss most of the 2011 season.
“It was a great feeling to score,” Morales said. “Because it’s in the first game of the season and it helped to win the game against the Galaxy. The MLS champions. I’m very happy for scoring my goal.”
As are all the RSL players. After all, they’re the ones who ended up with the storybook ending on the night.
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