Galaxy Take Beckham Circus To Toronto

by TJ Boyce – August 4, 2007

Los Angeles Galaxy (3-5-4) at Toronto FC (5-9-4)
BMO Field - Toronto, Ontario, Canada
7:30 p.m. ET – ESPN2, CBC, FSN-W

The Los Angeles Galaxy head north of the border on Sunday to take on Toronto FC, with injuries playing a key role in the first-ever meeting between the two teams.

For the Galaxy, David Beckham will travel with the team, but his playing status is listed as ‘questionable’ as he continues to slowly recover from an ankle injury. Los Angeles will also be without the services of veteran Cobi Jones (hip), Chris Albright (hamstring), and Kyle Veris (hip). Several other players including Edson Buddle and Kyle Martino are nursing less severe injuries.

With all eyes again on Beckham, head coach Frank Yallop said Toronto’s field surface could play a role in whether or not the superstar sees action on Sunday. BMO Field utilizes FieldTurf, a surface that Beckham is not used to playing on. “Hopefully we’ll get a look at (the field) on Saturday and see what he thinks,” said Yallop.

Toronto FC has also been bitten by the injury bug, with five of their regular starters (Greg Sutton, Jeff Cunningham, Danny Dichio, Marvell Wynne and Ronnie O’Brien) unable to take the field this weekend. Jim Brennan and Andrew Boyens are also banged up, with only Brennan expected to play.

The injury to Sutton has prompted TFC to go global in their search for another keeper, resulting in the acquisition of Kyriakos (Kenny) Stamatopoulos, a Canadian who had been playing with Tromso I.L. in Norway. He is on loan with Toronto, with the club having the option of buying him outright at the end of the season. After training with the club on Friday, Stamatopoulos is expected to start Sunday’s match.

With both Toronto and L.A. at or near the bottom of their respective conference tables, Sunday’s game should feature two teams hungry for maximum points. The Galaxy are gearing up for what figures to be a grueling second half of the season, with fifteen games scheduled over the next two months and most of those coming away from the Home Depot Center. Toronto has just come off of their longest road trip of the year, going 1-1-3 over the five-game stretch.
Key matchup: Toronto forward Collin Samuel vs. the Galaxy defense. Samuel may be Toronto’s best chance at cracking the suspect Los Angeles defense, a back-line that gave up five goals in their SuperLiga victory over FC Dallas on Tuesday. With Dichio and Cunningham out for this game, Samuel will be looked toward to spark the TFC attack and test Galaxy ‘keeper Joe Cannon.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

umm, Alecko may be nursing an injury of his own, but he hasn't been w/ TFC since May.