Re-Tooled Galaxy Defense Key vs RSL

Yes, it's finally March and it begins with a bang for LA. The Galaxy get a chance to redeem themselves from their post-season lost versus a Real Salt Lake team that will be finding themselves after Jason Kries left the team to head up NYC FC after their MLS Cup loss. Expect the Galaxy to be focused as this game is the final chance to fine-tune before the first of two games vs Xolos in the CONCACAF Champions League.  
Keane's starting partner is also a matter of contention. Will Arena go with the height and physicality of Rob Friend or Samuel's youth? Another possibility is seeing Landon Donovan up top again. Donovan is one goal away from breaking the all-time MLS goal scorer and would love to get that off his shoulders in front of the home crowd and focus on CCL action midweek. However, it's more likely he'll be in left midfield.
So what will LA need to do to come out with a win against RSL? Mostly that comes down to how the back line melts together. As mentioned in the season preview, this is not your tried-and-true LA defense. Todd Dunivant is fighting a hamstring injury and is still up in the air as far as his status. This could leave both flanks open for competition. Do not be surprised to see James Riley in place of Dunivant if he is injured.
Prediction – LA comes out 2-1 winners with Landon finally breaking the all time scoring record.
Points of note
• The Galaxy are 7-5-1 at home vs RSL and the overall series is even at 10-10-5. The Galaxy have also won 4 out of the last 5 home openers. Their only loss? 2012 vs Real Salt Lake.
• This is Jeff Cassar's first game vs. the Galaxy and first game as head coach since Jason Kries left for NYC FC after the 2013 season
• Landon Donovan has scored against RSL 9 times in his career. This bodes well in his quest to break the all-time scoring record. However, RSL's Nick Rimando is chasing a record of his own. He's four clean sheets away from breaking the all time record as well.

About Dustyn Richardson

Managing editor and Houston Dynamo writer for Total-MLS. Fan of all Houston sports teams and Manchester United supporter. Still angry at Bud Selig for moving the Astros to the American League.