The Galaxy gave up a 1-0 lead in the last 15 minutes of the game to lose to NASL side, Carolina Railhawks.
Pat Noonan was wearing the captain’s armband and put the visiting Galaxy on the board in the 38th minute, but the Galaxy could not slow down Ty Shippalane who scored in the 75th minute and assisted on the game winning goal scored by Brian Shriver in the 88th minute.
The loss knocks the Galaxy out of the US Open Cup in the third round. To make matters worse, the Carolina Railhawks have not exactly been flying in the NASL; Carolina is 0-5-4 in NASL play this year. In other words, they have not won a game this season until the defending MLS Cup champions came visiting. The Carolina Railhawks will host Chivas USA in the next round of the cup.
The Galaxy sent out a side with very few regulars. The starting lineup was Bill Gaudette, David Lopes, Tommy Meyer, Bryan Gaul, Leonardo, Hector Jimenez, Michael Stephens, Marcelo Sarvas, Kyle Nakazawa, Pat Noonan, and Chad Barrett.
To compound matters for the Galaxy, Hector Jimenez injured his left knee. He was not the only one to leave the game due to injury as Bryan Gaul and Chad Barrett were also forced off the pitch. Gaul has been playing great recently and staking a claim to a starting center back role, and both goals were scored after he left the pitch.
This is the third consecutive come from ahead loss for the Galaxy. They suffered similar problems against San Jose and Houston earlier this week.
The one bright spot for the Galaxy was that Leonardo was able to play the entire game. The Brazilian center back is returning from a horrific knee injury that has kept him out for over one year. So it has to be considered a positive that he was able to play the entire match.
Bruce Arena has to be considered on the hot seat at this point of the season. The team has had an epically bad string of results. They have not won in eight matches in all competitions, six of those are losses. There have only been whispers of Arena’s job status to this point due to the respect for Arena throughout the Galaxy and most of US Soccer. He also turned the Galaxy from a terrible defensive team into a defensive juggernaut that rolled through the league last season. However, the Galaxy team now will have a break until their next league match against Portland on June 17. If there was a time to consider a change at the managerial spot, this would be the time. The new manager would have a couple weeks to implement his system and get to know the players before forced to play a game.
However, I do not expect the Galaxy ownership to pull the trigger. They have too much respect for what Arena has done for the franchise. They will ride this out for now, and hope that the form Landon Donovan showed with the US National team returns with him to Los Angeles. Donovan has two goals and two assists on the season, and he had three goals, one assist, and one secondary assist in one game in a US A jersey.