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Welcome to the first California Clasico of the 2021 MLS season.
Often dramatic and captivating, the West Coast-based rivalry between the LA Galaxy and the San Jose Earthquakes will easily be one of the games to watch this weekend.
Although the Galaxy are coming off a recent loss to the Portland Timbers, they still look to be in better shape than the Earthquakes who currently have three defeats in a row.
|There’s no doubt that San Jose are a bit of a wildcard under the leadership of manager Matias Almeyda, but against the Galaxy and star striker Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez, problems should persist.|
|LA Galaxy vs San Jose Earthquakes Information|
|Teams||LA Galaxy vs San Jose Earthquakes|
|Location||Dignity Health Sports Park (Los Angeles, California)|
|Time||Saturday, May 29th at 7:00 pm ET|
|How to Watch||TUDN, UniMas|
Like many other rivalries across the globe, there’s something intangible that inspires an endless amount of intensity and spirit in the California Clasico.
Whether it be through high-scoring clashes or late game-winners, there’s something unparalleled about the match-up that regularly stands out from many of MLS’s top rivalries.
That said, ahead of Saturday, the Earthquakes will still be left licking their wounds after losing three games in a row. They’re starting to slip up and have lost their early momentum from a few weeks back.
As for the Galaxy, in spite of a 3-0 loss to the Timbers last week, they’ll not only have home advantage this weekend but also an in-form striker who has so far looked like an MVP contender.
It was only a matter of time before Hernandez started to find the back of the net.
After a difficult 2020 that had several issues on and off the field, the former Manchester United forward has kicked off the new season with seven goals and an assist in just six appearances.
In the last few weeks, he has led the race in the conversation regarding who has already looked like an MVP for the 2021 tournament.
Hernandez has been unstoppable and has yet to go two games in a row this season without scoring a goal.
There’s a bit of inconsistency and unpredictability to San Jose.
Capable of both heavy wins and losses, it’s at times tough to truly tell how well they will do this season.
That said, there has been a common thread from their three defeats: Not being able to go toe-to-toe against MLS’ elite teams.
Up against the likes of the Seattle Sounders, Sporting Kansas City and the Timbers, their attack-minded progress has been shut down in their latest poor string of games.
And although the Galaxy wasn’t exactly an elite team last year, with Hernandez now firing on all cylinders, one could make the argument that they could be back in the upper echelon of the league.
The Galaxy’s turnaround at home is also worth noting.
With three wins and seven goals scored at Dignity Health Park Sports Park, the LA side have been perfect with their three consecutive wins.
In fact, since October 18th, the Galaxy have remained undefeated in their six matches at home.
Familiar turf seems to help Hernandez as well. Of his seven goals so far in 2021, five have arrived in Galaxy’s matches in Dignity Health.
Freelance writer Cesar Hernandez is a specialist in all things American and Mexican soccer. He has written for ESPN FC, The Athletic, The Guardian, FourFourTwo, VICE Sports and several other publications. Along with writing and previous radio appearances on the BBC, talkSPORT and SiriusXM FC, Cesar is also a member of the Mexican Soccer Show podcast. Email: [email protected]More info on Cesar Hernandez
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