Ostensibly in a 4-4-2 formation, with Donovan and Beckham moving and floating as they saw fit with
Gordon as Donovan's forward partner, the Galaxy flummoxed San Jose with its movement, pace, and crisp interplay.
"I think what changed is our positional play," said Beckham. "In the first game, we was all over the place, from right to back to midfield to up front, we was all out of position. It's something we've worked on the last two or three days. Tactically, we've worked on a lot of things, from set pieces to the way we've been playing to our positional play, and it showed tonight. It showed that we worked on it, and it pays off when you take that into a game."
What also changed was attitude and commitment and workrate, which were the elements Coach Ruud Gullit most bemoaned by their absence in Colorado.
"If you play any kind of system," said Gullit, "if you play like we played last week, you're going to lose."
San Jose coach Frank Yallop used his preferred 4-4-2, with a central defensive pairing of Cochrane and Nick Garcia, and Ned Grabavoy and Ramiro Corrales in central midfield. The failure of this quartet to hold the ball and establish tempo threw the Quakes out of sync nearly every time they tried to launch an attack or stop one of the Galaxy's forays.
Rookie Sean Salinas made no impression up front, but replacement Gavin Glinton - one of four ex-Galaxy players signed by Yallop - couldn't mesh with Kei Kamara, either. A very unpolished game by Ronnie O'Brien on the right flank wasted the rare situations when San Jose got him the ball with space.
Cannon may have raced off his line too early to confront Donovan on the second Galaxy goal but poor decisions ran rampant through the Quakes, who after falling behind simply were a step slow and second-best all over the field despite expending the effort and sweat typical of the San Jose teams Yallop twice led to MLS titles during his first Northern California stint in 2001 and 2003.
"I [was] bummed out for Joe," said Donovan, "but stay on his line next time."
Before the match, Yallop emphasized that, the team's debut match, though significant, was just one game.
So it is too for the Galaxy, which after two games is 1-1, having been blown apart by a Rapids team far short of full strength before overrunning an
expansion team that may be competitive soon but isn't just yet.