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3 things we learned from LA Galaxy's 3-1 win over Real Salt Lake

This was too easy for the Galaxy.

Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

The LA Galaxy appear to be hitting their stride at the perfect point in the MLS season. They were dominant from start to finish against Real Salt Lake in their first-round playoff game, and they'll move on to face the Colorado Rapids after a convincing 3-1 victory.

Alan Gordon got LA on the scoreboard just 14 minutes into the match on the end of a pretty move involving all of the team's attackers. Landon Donovan set up the goal with a cross that was flicked to the back post by Giovani dos Santos, leaving Gordon with a simple finish.

The Galaxy looked completely in control until the 20th minute, when RSL was given a gift in the form of a soft penalty for a foul by Emmanuel Boateng on Javier Morales. Joao Plata stepped up to the spot and scored, tying the match, but LA took back control quickly.

Perhaps motivated by the call that went against him, Boateng proceeded to take over the rest of the first half, scoring two goals by the 34th minute. The first was one of the best individual efforts scored by anyone this season. After picking the ball up from Gordon, he went on a slalom run through the entire RSL defense before beating Nick Rimando from eight yards. A few minutes later, LA got Boateng isolated out wide against Demar Phillips, whom he torched with a straight-ahead run before finding the far corner with a shot.

Up two goals, LA set out to kill the game off with possession in the second half, and they succeeded, finishing with 60 percent possession and 85 percent passing accuracy. RSL's best chance to get back into the game came in the 85th minute, when Luke Mulholland had a shot blocked, Kyle Beckerman hit the crossbar, and Yura Movsisyan had a shot cleared by Robbie Rogers all in a short sequence. Ultimately, LA's defense held on without a problem after that.

Three things

Emmanuel Boateng's winner was amazing -- Four defenders were in a position to make a play on this goal. None of them did. Boateng just torched all of them.

There aren't many guys who can keep the ball at their feet while moving that quickly, then apply the finish at the end too. This was a special goal, and deflating for RSL.

Only a bad call prevented a blowout -- Maybe Boateng went nuts because he was mad about getting wronged by referee Alan Kelly. Javier Morales basically created the RSL penalty by tripping himself with Boateng's body. It wasn't a penalty at all. And who knows what the score would have been without that call. RSL didn't create much.

Time for RSL to hit the reset button? -- Kyle Beckerman is 34. Chris Wingert is 34. Javier Morales is 36. Nick Rimando is 37. Head coach Jeff Cassar is unpopular with fans. It might be time for RSL to ditch their coach, half their roster, and start over with some new ideas. The 2009-13 RSL squad isn't coming back.