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Dueling Heroics From Galaxy, Toronto, Leave No One Special

Arsenal fans will tell you, when the team you support scores a stoppage time go ahead goal, the expectation is that the win has been sealed. Liverpool fans can tell you, soccer is a funny game. In the 90+1' Juan Pablo Angel found himself with the ball at the top of the box, and smashed it in past Stefan Frei. Home Depot Center erupted, and 20,675 fans thought they were going home happy. Former Galaxian Alan Gordon had other plans. With his second goal of the night, Alan Gordon took two points away from the Los Angeles Galaxy, knocking in a pass from Malcon Santos. The game ended up 2-2, with Toronto FC splitting a point with the Galaxy. This was just the second point away from home for bottom of the league Toronto. While this may seem like just another Galaxy-Toronto match ending in a draw, it was certainly full of quirks.

For starters, the opening goal came in the 2'. Miguel Lopez and Chad Barrett found themselves in a two on two breakaway. Lopez held the ball long enough for Chris Birchall to make his run backing up the play, and finding himself with the ball all alone on the right corner of the box; Birchall easily put in his first goal since the 2005-06 season with Coventry City. The rest of the first half was marred by communication problems between Beckham and his other midfielders, as the Galaxy were trying out a new offensive scheme.

"We played a different system in the first half," said David Beckham. "We played a diamond formation. We were just getting in each other's way at times, and obviously it's the first time we played it so that was gonna happen. Sometimes that's gonna happen, it happened a little bit too much for our liking in the first half."

While the two goals is a much better effort than last week, it wasn't enough to get all three points thanks to Alan Gordon's brace. The LA Galaxy and Chivas USA castoff came on in the 43' for an injured Jacob Peterson. In the 68', Gordon got plenty of air to head in a Danleigh Borman cross. Then in the 90+4', Gordon drove a dagger into the hearts of the fans that used to cheer him. The Angel City Brigade may have chanted "LA reject", but it was Gordon who had the last laugh.

Without Landon Donovan and Juninho in the middle, and trying out this new diamond formation, much of the game fell to David Beckham. His four corners didn't produce much, and his crosses lacked sharpness, but not much can be said for his fellows in the middle. Michael Lopez, after his assist, had a brilliant chance in the 10' that bounced hard off the left post. While he played hard enough to be noticed, he and David Beckham seemed to be on separate planes in the first half, with several quarrels taking place between them. Michael Stephens also had a wide open chance, but his screamer went just wide left. The game could easily have been 3-0 Galaxy going into halftime with just a bit more sharpness from the middle.

Outside of his gift of a goal, Juan Pablo Angel was mostly absent, and Chad Barrett only had one shot and it was wide right. The Galaxy continue to get little from their forwards, which much like the national team, puts a lot of pressure on the center midfielders.

The next two matches for the Galaxy are on the road, the team won't play at home again until the July 4th fireworks extravaganza. Juninho will be available for the match against Colorado, but David Beckham will have to play carefully as his yellow card for a first half reckless tackle leaves him one yellow away from a suspension.