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MLS First Kick: Seattle Sounders host LA Galaxy

It has been 128 days since the Los Angeles Galaxy eliminated the Seattle Sounders from the 2010 MLS Cup playoffs. The Galaxy had Seattle’s number last year, winning all four MLS matches between the teams. The first meeting was a 4-0 victory at Quest Field, the worst defeat in Sounders franchise history. The Sounders were the Galaxy opponents on July 4th, when the team was welcoming back World Cup heroes Landon Donovan and Edson Buddle. Then at the end of the year, the Galaxy swept the aggregate series to move on in the MLS Cup. Seattle was able to defeat the Galaxy in US Open Cup play, in a game where Bruce had Landon and Buddle stay home, trying to rest up after the World Cup tournament.

When Landon was on the pitch against Seattle, he was playing some of his best soccer. He made four of his league leading sixteen assists against Seattle. He also managed to push across one goal.

In a year where the Galaxy were known for being defensive minded (in the first MLS Cup match against Seattle, some journalists accused them of playing ten men on defense), Los Angeles only gave up two goals all year to the Sounders. Both of them were scored by Steve Zakuani; one goal scored in regular season play, the other in the MLS Cup. Both goals were away goals, scored at the Home Depot Center.

This will be the third straight year that Seattle hosts the league opener. The franchise has had great attendance and support from the beginning, and an educated guess would say that MLS wants to advertise that atmosphere in their first marquee match of the season. They defeated the New York Red Bulls 3-0 in their first game in club history, back on March 19th, 2009. Then last year they defeated newcomer Philadelphia Union 2-0 in front of 36,241 fans.