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Fire Vs. Galaxy: LA Stars Hope To Keep Fire From Open Galaxy

The LA Galaxy are in Chicago this weekend to do battle against the Chicago Fire at Toyota Park on Sunday afternoon. The match, kicking off at noon on ESPN, comes after the Galaxy lost their midweek match against the Philadelphia Union; their second straight loss. At halftime of the broadcast, MLS will announce the Starting XI for the MLS All Star Game in Philadelphia.

Landon Donovan has a been a shooting star as of late, with four goals and two assists over the last four matches. His three goals and two assists in week 16 earned him Player of the Week honors, then he followed in week 17 with a goal against San Jose. Against the Philadelphia Union midweek, Donovan was initially credited with an assist on Chad Barrett's goal, but when Robbie Keane was ruled to have touched the ball on Todd Dunivant's pass to Chad Barrett the assist was taken away as there can only be two assists on a goal.

Donovan has been especially hot against the Fire, registering a goal or an assist in nine of his last eleven matches against Chicago. Since August 13, 2005, Donovan has collected eight goals and three assists when lining up against the Fire.

Trends haven't favored the Galaxy this season. The New England Revolution and Chivas USA were able to reverse their winless streaks while facing the Galaxy earlier this year, and now the Philadelphia Union has earned their first ever victory over LA.

Still, it's worth noting that the Galaxy have come away with points on their last three visits to Toyota Park, including a 2-1 victory last April 17th and a 2-0 victory in 2009. The Fire have won just one of the last six meetings between the clubs.

The Galaxy have been defined this year by an openness, a back four full of space to be exploited. LA has surrendered 29 goals in 18 MLS games, now over the halfway point of the season. Last year the Galaxy have up 28 goals over their whole champaign.