Galaxy-Dynamo, the unlikely MLS Cup rematch

[MLS CUP PLAYOFFS: Seattle-Los Angeles] For the second year in a row, the Los Angeles Galaxy will host the Houston Dynamo in the MLS Cup, prevailing over the Seattle Sounders 4-2 on aggregate after a 2-1 loss in Seattle. A disputed penalty kick that Robbie Keane converted in the 68th minute sealed the series victory for the Galaxy, while the Sounders were left to ponder what might have been ...

-- For the second year in a row, the Sounders dug themselves out of which they could not get out. Last year, a 2-0 win at home was not enough to overcome a 3-0 loss at Real Salt Lake in the first leg of the conference semifinals. Seattle clawed back from 3-0 down on goals by Eddie Johnson and Zach Scott early in both halves. But Adam Johansson was called for a handball in the area, setting up Keane's fifth goal of the playoffs.

-- "I thought it was a harsh call," said Seattle coach Sigi Schmid, "because there was nobody in the box, he wasn't passing it to anybody, all Keane was looking to do was maybe draw a penalty and hit it into his hand. He's a clever player, and he did well, but on the same token it's like an intentional hand ball is taking away an opportunity, what opportunity was there? There was no opportunity, he just purposely, clever move on his part." Schmid said the call was particularly harsh because Seattle thought it should have had a penalty in the first leg for a Sean Franklin handball.

-- The Sounders also felt aggrieved by referee Mark Geiger's decision to not allow a goal scored by Johnson a minute before he opened the scoring. The Seattle forward was called for offside, though replays showed he was onside.

-- Cuban midfielder Osvaldo Alonso was issued his second yellow card by Geiger after the game for dissent and red carded.

--  Galaxy star Landon Donovan, who has been plagued by injuries all season and left the first leg with tightness in his hamstring, did not dress for Sunday's game. He had not trained all week.

-- MLS Cup 2012 on Dec. 1 will be the first final that is not played at a predetermined site. The only chance of chance of the Galaxy hosting MLS Cup 2012 as the No. 4 seed with 54 points was that Houston, the No. 5 seed with only 53 points, win the Eastern Conference.

-- The verdict in the Los Angeles-Seattle series meant that the home teams in the second leg of all six two-game series lost.

-- Sunday's crowd of 44,575 in Seattle was the largest attendance for a non-final postseason match, and the sixth largest postseason attendance in MLS history.

Nov. 18 in Seattle
Seattle 2 Los Angeles 1. Goals: Johnson (Scott) 12, Scott (Tiffert) 57; Keane (pen.) 68.
Seattle -- Gspurning, Scott, Hurtado, Johansson (Martinez, 74), Parke, Evans, Tiffert, Alonso, Zakuani (Rosales, 82), Johnson, Montero (Estrada, 73).
Los Angeles -- Saunders, Franklin, Gonzalez, Meyer, Dunivant, Beckham, Magee, Wilhelmsson (Juninho, 62), Sarvas, Buddle (Stephens, 84), Keane.
Red Card: Seattle -- Alonso 94+.
Referee: Mark Geiger.
Att.: 44,375.

16 comments about "Galaxy-Dynamo, the unlikely MLS Cup rematch".
  1. tom brown, November 19, 2012 at 5:16 a.m.

    There is no need to play the games - just give aeg the trophy & cancel it. Same difference. The pk was horrible. The most bogus I've seen. It makes mls look so cheap. They are cheap.

  2. beautiful game, November 19, 2012 at 10:45 a.m.

    "Unlikely rematch"...not quite. Dynamo coach Kinnear has done wonders with a squad that has limited expectations...his players put out every game and that alone carried them to the final.

  3. Doug Broadie, November 19, 2012 at 11:13 a.m.

    If it was a pk according to the rules and advice to refs, then I'll eat my sweaty fishing hat.

  4. Kerry Ogden, November 19, 2012 at 11:47 a.m.

    This is one of those times you wonder if the Ref's took a bribe from LA. Terrible calls consistantly throughout the match against Seattle when it looked like Seattle could prevail from the 3 goal deficit. Sigi made the correct assessment on Robbie K. intention to draw a hand ball to try and squash Seattles attacks, in the end it was the ref who gave LA the the chance to move on not LA's Ability. Pathetic!!!!! LA played great in the first match and Stunk in the second and yes the handball by Franklin should have warranted a PK for Seattle, another bad call by the ref.

  5. Bret Newman, November 19, 2012 at 12:01 p.m.

    I'm getting tired of playing my violin for Seattle fans. Just face the facts, that the Galaxy are the better team. Better luck next year!

  6. Karl Schreiber, November 19, 2012 at 12:30 p.m.

    Icredible! Amateur-level officiating for a professionally staged conference final, professionally played by both teams (at approximately a second or third division level by international standards), in front of over 40,000 knowledgeable fans. – Offside called on Seattle for clearly no offside in first half. Penalty awarded L.A. for clearly no intentional hands in second half [Is a player allowed to spread arms in order to keep balance? Absolutely. Is it “hands” if the ball strikes arms? Absolutely NOT. See Law 12.]
    Was Seattle robbed the conference championship by incompetent officiating? – This is NOT the point IMHO. With MLS trying to become a top quality sports league, they better assure top-level officiating in top-level games.

  7. beautiful game, November 19, 2012 at 12:48 p.m.

    Ref Geiger usually let's his 'rugby' style the game; this time too many soft for the PK, it was too harsh, the defenders body movement to block the cross appeared natural with no other intent.

  8. R.a. Vizcarra, November 19, 2012 at 2:03 p.m.

    I love how Seattle fans demean the league because they didn't win. If the tables were turned, would you cry out as loudly? Of course not. Sounders dug a hole in the first game, that was when you lost the series. Accept that fact and all else is secondary. Twice in a row sounders blow it in the first leg, and as for your star DP, Montero, did he reach the 5th post season without scoring 1 single time? You guys need to look in the mirror before blaming refs, the league, conspiracy theories and UFO's for losing. As the largest group of paying supporters in the league, maybe you should ask your FO to spend a little more on quality players, you guys deserve it.

  9. Allan Lindh, November 19, 2012 at 3:08 p.m.

    So what else is new? Houston has the best coach in the league, and LA has the most money. Wonder if Dom will ever get shot at coaching the US National team?

  10. Jim Wilson, November 19, 2012 at 3:18 p.m.

    The "hand ball" simply missed the basics of the FIFA rules. The question is not: did it hit his hand? Of course it did. The rule is actually about HANDLING the ball: "Handling the ball involves the DELIBERATE act of a player making contact with the ball with his hand or arm. The referee shall take into consideration: 1) the movement of the hand towards the ball (not the ball towards the hand), 2) the distance betwee the opponent and the ball (unexpected ball), 3) position of the hand does not necessarily mean infringement. Johansson's hand was about 12 inches from where Keane kicked the ball. There was zero reaction/movement. Not even close to being "deliberate" handling. TERRIBLE call.

  11. Glenn Maddock, November 19, 2012 at 5:14 p.m.

    The hand ball call was irrelevant. LA won by 2 goals, not one. Stop whining and get a DP who can score goals when it counts.

  12. Jim Williams, November 19, 2012 at 6:07 p.m.

    Bret Newman is a perfect example of looking the other way if it means his team wins. I wonder if his attitude would be the same had the Sounders gotten the calls they deserved and moved on to the MLS Cup?? After the kind of support thier fans gave it's a shame they didn't. It has nothing to do with a violin and everything to do with fair play. Good officiating lends credibility to a sport. Bad officiating takes it away.

  13. Stephen Johnson, November 19, 2012 at 7:05 p.m.

    This makes me sick all the fricken wining from the Sounders fans. Maybe we should offer them a little cheese with their wine. Why do you always look for executes for a lost. Let's blame this one on the officals. Remember, both teams played the game in front of the same referee, under the same rules.

    Law 5 – The Referee
    One of the most thankless jobs out there, a referee is required for all soccer matches. The referee's job is to enforce the laws of the game while maintaining order and ensuring fair play.

    Enough said, better luck next year Sounders.

  14. Margaret Manning, November 20, 2012 at 1:04 a.m.

    -- The Sounders also felt aggrieved by referee Mark Geiger's decision to not allow a goal scored by Johnson a minute before he opened the scoring. The Seattle forward was called for offside, though replays showed he was onside.--Gee, how could the Sounders be upset about the Johnson GOAL wrongly disallowed or the bogus PK? Oh, perhaps because you remove those gifts from the referee and the series is tied, maybe? Not to mention the uncalled PK at the other end. The dufus lineman who called offside every time Magee raised his arm--which Magee did every time the ball was passed to a Sounder anywhere near the box. The six handballs that occurred right in front of us at the centerline, none called. Calling fouls on the fouled player rather than the foul-committer. The chant was "We want Salazar!" Honestly, can we take the money spent on Beckham (who was completely shut down by Alonso) and use it to hire decent officials? And have them train a generation of professionals? How many games have been decided by the referees this season?

  15. tom brown, November 20, 2012 at 5:20 a.m.

    Generation Z predicted this over a year ago. Among many other things was told he had a tin foil hat. Guess the hat works!

  16. Amos Annan, November 20, 2012 at 7:52 a.m.

    referees make this same mistake all the time in soccer and few complain.

    MOST "handballs" in youth soccer are NOT
    really handballs.

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