MLS game preview

Galaxy versus Toronto preview

June 5, 2009

Last week, Landon Donovan helped the Los Angeles Galaxy extend their unbeaten streak to nine by assisting on a late tying goal.

The Galaxy will have to find a way to keep that run going without Donovan, their leading scorer, Saturday against a Toronto FC team that will also be missing its top offensive threat.

Donovan and Toronto midfielder Amado Guevara will face each other Saturday night, but that will be in Chicago as the United States takes on Honduras in a World Cup qualifying match.

With the Galaxy trailing by a goal last Saturday at home against Kansas City, Donovan fed Edson Buddle for a goal in the 87th minute that forged a 1-1 draw -- the fifth tie in a row for Los Angeles (1-1-9).

The Galaxy, one shy of the team's single-season record for ties, have not lost since April 4, but they haven't won since May 2. Five of Los Angeles' draws have come on the road.

The unbeaten run could be difficult to maintain with Donovan possibly missing the rest of this month due to national team commitments. With six goals and four assists, the Los Angeles forward has a hand in 10 of his team's 13 goals this season.

"We're not having a parade for Donovan when he leaves, nor are we having a funeral," Galaxy coach Bruce Arena told MLS' official Web site. "It's something we're well aware of, but we're prepared for it."

Donovan couldn't help the Galaxy record a point against Toronto in 2008. He scored two goals April 13 at home, but Jeff Cunningham's winner handed Los Angeles a 3-2 defeat. Donovan sat out a 2-0 loss at Toronto on May 31 because of a groin injury.

Toronto (4-4-4) is coming a poor effort in its most recent game. In last Saturday's 3-0 loss at Houston, it allowed the Dynamo to score all of their goals in a five-minute span.

"We had a really, really poor couple minutes where they scored goals," interim coach Chris Cummins said. "We are disappointed. We didn't play particularly well today."

Cummins' team plays its next three league games at BMO Field, where it's earned 11 of its 16 points this season. Toronto won't have its top scorer Saturday, however.

Guevara recorded two goals in Toronto's last home match, a 3-1 win over New England on May 23. With a team-leading five goals and four assists, he's surpassed his goal output from last season and matched his assist total in 10 fewer games.

Toronto will also be without defender Marvell Wynne, who plays for Team USA.

In addition to Donovan's absence, the Galaxy will be missing Gregg Berhalter after he received his second red card of the season last week. Buddle is probable despite nagging tightness in his left quad.


Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press