SEATTLE – It’s no secret the LA Galaxy have struggled defensively in 2018.
Following their 5-0 blowout loss to the Seattle Sounders at CenturyLink Field on Saturday, the Galaxy have now conceded 47 goals, tied with the Vancouver Whitecaps for the second-worst mark in the Western Conference. And they must now respond quickly respond from this defensive lowpoint — in which they tied a club record for worst margin of defeat — in time to face El Trafico rivals LAFC (10:30 pm ET | ESPN — Full TV & streaming info) for a third time Friday night as a part of Heineken Rivalry Week.
"It was just a game that we’ve got to put behind us," Galaxy coach Sigi Schmid said afterward. "It was embarrassing. I apologize to our fans because they had to watch it. I’ve got to watch it again and again so they only have to watch it once."
After a lopsided loss against the Sounders that saw his team leak goals from the get-go starting with a third-minute header from Chad Marshall, Schmid was asked if the match represented a low point for his beleaguered back line.
“Obviously it’s not a good point, but we’re all in this together,” Schmid said. “For me, we have to look at if we’re in the right places and right positions. Our ability to sometimes anticipate or to keep possession – it’s not just defending. When we give away some of the goals that we gave away today … it wasn’t like they put together great combination plays to beat us on the goals. It was pretty simple.”
The defensive meltdown overshadowed any sort of rationalization that could have been found for the Galaxy in the mix-and-match lineup they were forced to field for the contest.
Forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic didn’t travel. Romain Alessandrini, Michael Ciani and the sibling duo of Jonathan dos Santos and Giovani dos Santos were all also sidelined, but Schmid dismissed any notion that those absences could explain what turned into a dispiriting five-goal defeat.
“We play with the players who are here and we’re not going to talk about the other guys,” Schmid said.
The Galaxy are still very much in the playoff picture, but any hopes of a sustained run will likely hinge on shoring up those defensive issues. That will be one of the main focuses as the team heads back to the training ground, but after getting shut out in Saturday’s match as well, Schmid said anything and everything will need to be evaluated.
“There’s not much you can say. It was an embarrassing game for us,” Schmid said. “We gifted them three goals. I thought the first three goals were gifts from us and even the last one was another gift. You just can’t do that against a good team and expect to get a result. There’s nothing we’re not going to look at. We’ll look at everything. This is an emotional moment right after the game so we just have to let calmer heads prevail, sleep on it, think about it and then make decisions.”