LA Galaxy vs. Chicago Fire Player Ratings

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Mar 6, 2015; Carson, CA, USA; Los Angeles Galaxy defender Leonardo (22) and Chicago Fire midfielder Matt Watson (8) battle for the ball at StubHub Center. The Galaxy defeated the Fire 2-0. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The MLS kicked off on a high note for the LA Galaxy as they were able to show a national audience why they are the defending MLS Cup champions. They made quick work of a Chicago Fire team that struggled to find their way into the match. While the Galaxy came out 2-0 winners, the match could have been decided by more goals as the home side heavily out-shot, out-possessed, and out-played the Men in Red.

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Takeaways from the MLS opener can be read here. We’ll take a closer look at how each player performed and rate them on a 1-10 scale. Rarely will you see a score of 1 or 2, which will denote a player practically attempted to play for the other team or took a nap (literally) during portions of the match. On the other end of the spectrum, a 10 denotes a Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Mess type of performance with flawless passing and shooting.

First, let’s take a look at the home side LA Galaxy:


Brian Rowe was surprisingly given the nod in net over Jaime Penedo. After an early hiccup and tense moment, he grew into the match and took care of the very few opportunities the Fire put on net. A clean sheet is great, but Rowe can thank his defense for not giving him much to do.. Goalkeeper. LA Galaxy. BRIAN ROWE. 7.5

DAN GARGAN. 7.5. Gargan made a few marauding runs down the pitch, but he generally stayed at home and made sound decisions when needed along the back. Though he wasn’t much of a threat down the wing, he didn’t need to be with the way LA controlled the match. The veteran was subbed off in the 83rd minute.. Defender. LA Galaxy

8.5. The U.S. international was a rock in the center of the defense. Gonzalez was extremely calm on the ball and comfortably made passes out of the back that started some threatening Galaxy attacks. He showed his true quality on a long chip that set up LA’s second goal that put the match to bed.. Defender. LA Galaxy. OMAR GONZALEZ

8. Any time the Fire looked like they were going to put a solid attempt on the LA net, Leonardo seemed to be in the right place at the right time. He stopped a few quality through balls with critical interceptions that started the Galaxy the other way.. Defender. LA Galaxy. LEONARDO

7. After a magnificent start that saw Rogers push up and help the offense bomb Chicago’s goal for the first 10 minutes, he was exposed by Lovel Palmer a few times and needed help to get out of the jams. The true reason for the lower rating than the rest of the defense lies in the fact that he may have gotten away with a penalty in the box.. Defender. LA Galaxy. ROBBIE ROGERS

Ishizaki continually gave the Fire defense fits with his runs and pace. Bruce Arena’s strategy early in the match was to test the Fire’s new left back, Joevin Jones. Ishizaki was employed to carry out the strategy. Take away his poor pass to Keane, and he had a nearly flawless match.. Midfielder. LA Galaxy. STEFAN ISHIZAKI. 8.5

Juninho did what Juninho does best. He worked in the engine room and ensured a smooth transition from the defense to the front line of Galaxy attackers. The Fire barely provided a threat and Juninho’s quiet work played a big role.. Midfielder. LA Galaxy. JUNINHO . 7.5

Midfielder. LA Galaxy. KENNEY WALKER. 6.5. Kenney Walker was invisible at times, but he didn’t need to be seen or heard from much as the usually powerful and composed midfielder didn’t have many Fire challenges to deal with. He was subbed off in the 63rd minute after picking up a yellow card.

8. It was Villarreal’s goal that ended up being the game winner as the midfielder was in the right place at the right time. Regardless, it was a cool left footed finish that put the hosts up. If it weren’t for a few wayward passes early in the match, his rating would be a tad higher. He was subbed off in the 70th minute, 5 minutes after the opening goal.. Midfielder. LA Galaxy. JOSE VILLARREAL

9. The Irish international was in MVP form again. His deft touches, brilliantly timed runs, and scintillating vision led to an attack that could have scored 5 or 6 times. Keane would have had a 2nd goal if Ishizaka’s pass had connected to him streaking towards an empty net.. Forward. LA Galaxy. ROBBIE KEANE

7.5. The youngster’s runs were great and he opened up and created many scoring chances, especially at the beginning of the match. Zardes disappeared a bit in the second half and needs to improve his finishing and decision making. He is undoubtedly going to be one of the MLS’ best talents once he realizes his own power.. Forward. LA Galaxy. GYASI ZARDES


8.5. Talk about an impact sub! Husidic, the former Fire midfielder, came on in the 63rd minute in a 0-0 match. His distribution was superb and a moment of brilliance with a glancing header off Gonzalez’s chip directly set up Robbie Keane’s goal and the match dagger.. Midfielder. LA Galaxy. BAGGIO HUSIDIC

7. Gordon only played 20 minutes, so he couldn’t completely impose himself on the match, but his movement in the box drew Fire defenders toward him on LA’s second goal.. Forward. LA Galaxy. ALAN GORDON

Defender. LA Galaxy. A.J. DELAGARZA. N/A. The defender came on in the 83rd minute. By that point, the match was already put to bed so it’s tough to give him a rating for this short outing.

Next: Chicago Fire Player Ratings