Greg Vanney has called on his LA Galaxy players to show more of a “killer mentality” against California Clasico rivals San Jose Earthquakes if they are to take the next step in their development.
The Galaxy’s run of three wins and a draw in the space of four matches was ended in a 2-1 loss to Colorado Rapids in midweek.
Vanney’s side had 65 percent of possession and registered 20 shots, six of those on target, but failed to score more than once for the fourth game running.
With his side third in the Western Conference and now four points behind leaders Seattle Sounders, Vanney believes there is room for improvement at both ends of the field.
“Goals change games and the timing of goals change the emotion sometimes,” Vanney said. “We have to develop this killer mentality, this winning mentality.
“We also have to eliminate the little mistakes that are super costly to us in giving up goals, but goals at bad times and goals in bad ways.
“Those are two big growing areas that I think we need to get to.”
San Jose make the trip to Dignity Health Sports Park on Friday unbeaten in nine matches, albeit seven of those games finishing all square.
The Quakes played out a 1-1 draw with Minnesota United in their last match – a positive result after having defender Nathan sent off with less than a quarter of the game played.
Head coach Matias Almeyda had no complaints about that decision, but he once again felt some big decisions went against his side in the game.
“I bust my head every day with the coaching staff on how to coach the team,” he said. “It can’t be that every decision is mistaken against us. We want to be equal to the rest.”
PLAYERS TO WATCH
LA Galaxy – Rayan Raveloson
The Madagascar international has made an incredible impact since arriving at the Galaxy in May, scoring five goals in 10 appearances for Vanney’s side.
Raveloson’s latest goal was a well-taken strike in the loss to the Rapids, though he will be hoping for a different outcome should he register again on Friday.
San Jose Earthquakes – Marcos Lopez
The Quakes produced a great defensive effort to hold on for the majority of the match with 10 men in their draw with Minnesota.
Not only did full-back Lopez help to keep the opposition attackers quiet, he also led the way for possession gained (nine times), touches (57) and successful passes (24).
KEY OPTA FACTS
– LA Galaxy won their first two matches against San Jose this season. The Galaxy’s consecutive wins this season came after winning just two of their previous 10 MLS meetings with the Earthquakes (D2 L6) dating back to July 2017.
– Only three of the last 41 MLS matches the Galaxy have played at Dignity Health Sports Park dating back to September 2018 have ended in a draw (W24 L14).
– San Jose are unbeaten in five straight away matches (W1 D4), their longest run since going six straight (W4 D2, including playoffs) without a road loss from September 2012 to March 2013.
– Raveloson’s goal against Colorado on Tuesday was the first time the Galaxy scored from outside the box since October 7, 2020 (Julian Araujo vs Por). The Galaxy had scored 38 straight goals from inside the box (including own goals) before Raveloson’s strike.
– San Jose attempted four shots against Minnesota on Tuesday after playing the final 69 minutes with 10 men. The draw marked the first time the Quakes have avoided defeat while attempting four shots or fewer since a 2-2 draw at LA Galaxy in August 2014 (three shots).