MLS: Earthquakes take road woes into clash vs. Galaxy

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Two California rivals at opposite ends of the MLS standings square off when the San Jose Earthquakes visit the Los Angeles Galaxy in the latest edition of the Cali Clasico on Sunday.

The Earthquakes (5-3-3, 18 points) went into the weekend among the top teams in the Western Conference. They are unbeaten in two straight and on a 3-1-3 run, with the only loss coming in a 3-1 setback to Real Salt Lake on April 22.

But while it has been a successful run of late, it’s been a struggle for the club away from home. The Earthquakes are 0-3-2 in away games this season and have managed just one road win the past two seasons, going 1-15-7 in that span. The only win was 3-2 triumph against the Galaxy on July 13, 2022.

While feeling good after handing Los Angeles FC its first loss of the season in a surprise 2-1 result a week ago, San Jose has more to prove.

“We have a team that can compete with anyone. We still have a lot of work to do,” Earthquakes coach Luchi Gonzalez said after the win. “I want to see us progress and try to get better every day with each game. … We’re going to try to have another good performance against another LA rival.”

Forward Jeremy Ebobisse has scored eight goals in 10 career games against the Galaxy. A goal Sunday would make him the first player in MLS history to score in six straight road contests against a single opponent.

The Galaxy (1-6-3, 6 points) find themselves one spot out of last place. Their six points through 10 games is the fewest in franchise history. The task at hand for the Galaxy is to become just the second team since 2000 to make the playoffs with six or fewer points through 10 games.

Los Angeles has dropped each of its past two games, and during a 3-1 home loss to the Colorado Rapids on May 6, disenchanted fans chanted, “We want better” during the contest.

“The fans were right because I think this organization deserves better. That’s everything that I want to say. We all deserve better. We need to gain that betterness,” captain Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez said. “… Being almost last in the conference, nah, that’s not something that Galaxy deserves.

“You know, we could be three or four more spots higher having a bad season, at least. I don’t know.”

Hernandez is one of the Galaxy’s eight goal scorers so far this season, all of whom have scored just once.

–Field Level Media

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