LA Galaxy eliminated from CONCACAF with loss to Monterrey

Robbie Keane goes for the ball

MONTERREY, MEXICO (BDCi) — The LA Galaxy put up a good fight but it was not enough as Monterrey defeated them 1-0 on Wednesday night at hostile Estadio Tecnologico in the second leg of the CONCACAF semifinals.

The Galaxy were eliminated from the CONCACAF Champions League with a 3-1 aggregate scoreline.

The Galaxy looked strong defensively and confident pushing forward in the first half, only to have it fall apart in the second. They were undone nine minutes from the final whistle when winger Cesar Delgado broke down the right-hand side and found a wide open Aldo de Nigris, who put the ball between Carlo Cudicini’s legs for the only goal of the game.

Both teams were able to create good looks at goal for themselves in the first half. The Galaxy had a huge advantage when they earned five corner kicks to Monterrey’s two and came close to scoring on one of them.

Omar Gonzalez found a loose ball near his feet after challenging for a corner in the 30th minute and toe-picked it from close range forcing a great save from Monterrey keeper Juan de Dios Ibarra.

Monterrey had the better looks from open play though, with De Nigris the prime beneficiary of the chances his team created. He sent a 27-minute breakaway shot high and wide under strong pressure from Gonzalez and finally put Monterrey’s first shot on target with halftime approaching, though his flick was wisely anticipated by Cudicini.

The home side capitalized on their momentum from the first half and looked to go for the kill in the second half. Only a pair of goal-saving challenges from Gonzalez and another from Juninho kept the Rayados from finding the net early on.

Though the Galaxy did have some promising chances in the second half, their inability to score came back to haunt them as De Nigris’ late strike all but put the series to bed.

Monterrey will now face U.S. international Herculez Gomez and his Santos Laguna side later this month in the finals, a rematch of the 2011-12 finals, in what could be los Rayados’ best chance at silverware as their playoff hopes in the Liga MX dwindle.

The Galaxy will be back in the CONCACAF Champions League this summer, as their MLS Cup 2012 title puts them back in the tournament for the 2013-14 edition.  Their next match is Saturday against FC Dallas in Dallas.




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