Minnesota United and the Los Angeles Galaxy came into Wednesday’s game as two of the higher scoring teams in MLS.
Despite double digit shots for each club and 13 Loons corners, they played to a scoreless draw before an announced crowd of 19,779 in the first midweek and first night game at rainy Allianz Field.
The Loons now have two stalemates in two games at their new St. Paul stadium. The Loons fell to 3-3-2 and are winless in their last three matches, but Wednesday’s result comes against a hot Galaxy team that had won five straight, their best streak since 2014.
After giving up seven goals in the last two games, Minnesota’s persistently beleaguered defense will be satisfied with its second clean sheet this season, and their first since March 9.
Minnesota United midfielder Darwin Quintero attempts a corner kick in the first half against the Los Angeles Galaxy at Allianz Field in St. Paul on Wednesday, April 24, 2019. Courtesy of Minnesota United
Minnesota’s 17 goals this season were third-most in MLS, but they couldn’t finish with only one shot on goal. Meanwhile Los Angeles had 13 and had given up an MLS low seven goals this season. This combo had the Galaxy (6-1-1) near the top of the Western Conference and starting its winning run with a with 3-2 victory over Minnesota in California on March 16.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic came in second in MLS with seven goals, while the Loons have given up 15 goals this season, including seven in the last two games. Ibrahimovic had three shots and one on goal.
In a scoreless first half, the Galaxy had 60 percent possession and the only two shots on goal, but Minnesota had eight corner kicks and Ike Opara connected on two threatening headers.
Angelo Rodriguez put a shot off the side netting in the eight minute, and in the 11th, Abu Danladi’s heavy second touch doomed a breakaway.
In the second half, Rodriguez and Darwin Quintero had, after cutbacks, good looks that weren’t converted.
United coach Adrian Heath made three attacking substitutions in the second half, brining on Miguel Ibarra for Kevin Molino and Romario Ibarra for Rodriguez and Ethan Finlay for Kevin Molino. They still couldn’t crack the Galaxy.
The Loons made five changes to its starting lineup after their heated 4-3 loss to Toronto FC on Friday. Two changes were forced with the red-card suspensions of midfielder Jan Gregus and Francisco Calvo. They watched Wednesday’s game from a third-level suite.
Eric Miller came in at left back for Calvo, while Rasmus Schuller filled in for Gregus in central midfield.
Opara returns after needing seven stitches in a collision in the Allianz Field opener and missed Toronto game. He was inserted into the lineup, with Michael Boxall, who gave up the game-winning goal to the Reds, going to the bench.
The Loons also made two attaching changes with Molino making his first start since tearing his anterior cruciate ligament in March 2017. Danladi makes his second start of the season as the club has been cautious with his injury history.