Columbus Crew Vs. LA Galaxy, 2011 MLS: LA Wins It In 90th Minute

It was clear from the moment that the starting lineups were announced that the Los Angeles Galaxy weren't prioritizing their match against the Columbus Crew. With key CONCACAF Champions League matches before and after their trip to Columbus, LA made eight changes to their first choice starting lineup. They were risking dropped points in a battle of the Western Conference's best versus the Eastern Conference's best, but thanks to a 90th minute goal by Chad Barrett LA was able to snag three points at Crew Stadium and extend their lead atop MLS.

Columbus had a rare sellout for the match, but it isn't rare for the Galaxy and their array of stars to bring a crowd. The problem is that the stars were resting. Neither David Beckham nor Robbie Keane were in the team and Landon Donovan came off of the bench for the visitors, leaving the crowd a little disappointed, unless they showed up to see Adam Cristman and Bryan Jordan.

The entire match was pretty much an assault on the eyes. LA was playing all reserves and Columbus isn't a very good team. That doesn't make for attractive soccer and very rarely were either LA or Columbus attractive. It seemed destined for a dull 0-0 draw until the last 15 minutes when the match opened up some. Josh Saunders was called upon to make two good saves as Columbus grabbed control of the match in the final half hour.

Donovan made an appearance off of the bench and helped get the Galaxy their winner in the 90th minute when he ripped a good volley from the right side. It forced Will Hesmer into a fine save, but it left a juicy rebound that Barrett was only too happy to knock into the open net for the game-winner.

With the win, along with Real Salt Lake's loss, has the Galaxy on the verge of a Supporters Shield title. They have a 10 point lead over Seattle and Salt Lake with just a month left in the season. On the flip side is Columbus, who lost their spot atop the Eastern Conference today as Houston passed them up 

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