MLS Cup 2011: The Home Depot Center Is Ready

It's been a crazy week in Carson, starting last Monday when the MLS Cup sold out before noon the Monday after the Galaxy qualified. Resale ticket prices have skyrocketed, and when the Galaxy released a few hundred more tickets, they were sold out within ten minutes. The Sports Business Journal is reporting that all 23 of it's corporate partners are going to be involved with Sunday's Cup Championship, as compared to last year when 18 of 23 partners participated. 

What about the game itself. The Home Depot Center will be hosting it's fourth MLS Cup final, with the Rose Bowl also hosting a Cup final in 1998. The three previous finals at the Home Depot Center have averaged five goals per game according to Opta Sports. This will be the first time the Los Angeles Galaxy play in a Cup Final they are hosting, though it has happened before in MLS. Two of the three previous MLS Cups at Home Depot Center sold out, but this will be the first over capacity game. 

The other statistic to be aware of is the fact that only two of the last six MLS Cup finals have been won in regular time. The other four saw two go to penalty kicks and two go into extra time. That includes the 2009 MLS Cup Final, with the LA Galaxy lost to Real Salt Lake on penalty kicks. 

Going back 15 years, ten MLS Cups have been won by the team coming out of the West, with the Eastern Conference champ only winning five. Because of MLS's playoff format, that doesn't mean that those ten West teams played in the Western conference, just came out of that bracket. 

Twelve different teams have played in the MLS Cup final, out of 18 current MLS teams. The LA Galaxy are making their record breaking seventh appearance this year. The Galaxy have only won two so far in six tries. 

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