After playing in front of capacity crowds at Stanford Stadium and the StubHub Center, the LA Galaxy (13-7-7) and San Jose Earthquakes (14-9-3) bring the 60th regular season edition of the California Clásico to Avaya Stadium for the first time on Viernes de Futbol during MLS Heineken Rivalry Week II (11 p.m. ET, UniMás). LA Galaxy extended its winning streak to four games in Sunday’s 5-1 dispatching of New York City FC. Once again, newcomer Sebastian Lletget shined for a star-studded LA side. Lletget, who signed with the Galaxy from West Ham United in May, recorded a goal and assist, and now has seven goals and two assists in just 13 league appearances this season. His 0.70 goals per 90 minutes (among players with at least 900 minutes played) is fifth in MLS surrounded by the likes of David Villa, Sebastian Giovinco and Kei Kamara, and he’s beckoning for a U.S. national team call-up. Giovani dos Santos, who turned in a goal and assist in Sunday’s win, has proven virtually unstoppable with his new club. Since debuting for the Galaxy on August 6, the El Tri star has three goals and five assists in just 358 minutes across three league matches and two CONCACAF Champions League appearances.
401 Derby features most star-studded affair in rivalry history as Drogba & Giovinco square off
Toronto FC (10-10-4) hosts the Montreal Impact (8-10-4) at BMO Field at 4 p.m. ET (TSN) Saturday afternoon in the 10th regular season meeting in the famed 401 Derby during MLS Heineken Rivalry Week II. The Impact heads into the match looking for their first ever win at BMO Field and will be relying on new faces in the matchup against the Reds.
Newly signed Designated Player Didier Drogba made his debut last week for Montreal against the Philadelphia Union and joins a club with a recent influx of international talent. Last season, Montreal acquired Argentinian Ignacio Piatti, who currently leads the team with eight goals and four assists this season. In the offseason, the club acquired Cameroon international Ambroise Oyongo in a trade with the New York Red Bulls and Belgium international defender Laurent Ciman joined the club in the middle of its run to the CONCACAF Champions League, where they ultimately lost in the final to Mexican giants Club América. And just before the closing of the Secondary Transfer Window, Montreal acquired Costa Rican international Johan Venegas from Costa Rican side Alajuelense. The new signings have gelled together well and the Impact currently sit in sixth place in the Eastern Conference.
Toronto FC are in fourth place and are led by their offseason additions of Designated Players Sebastian Giovinco, Michael Bradley and Jozy Altidore. Toronto’s DPs had themselves a game last week in their 5-0 pummeling of Orlando City SC. Giovinco notched another assist and an AT&T Goal of the Week nominee with an incredible free kick goal (watch here). Jozy Altidore grabbed his third brace of the season coming off of the bench and Michael Bradley notched his first career three assist game. Marky Delgado, who was a part of this season’s U.S. U-20 World Cup squad in New Zealand, has featured prominently in the team since returning from World Cup duty also found his name on the score sheet and now has a career-high three goals. Toronto won the first regular season matchup against Toronto FC 3-1 back on June 24 and will look to clinch the 401 Derby series with a win, while Montreal will try to fend off teams outside the Eastern Conference playoff spots