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Guess the Starting XI MLS Match #2 Preview & Contest (LA GALAXY)

We prepare you for the Vancouver Whitecaps next match with match information, player availability, and predictions. Speaking of predictions, we have our regular Guess the Starting XI and Final Score contest. 

Los Angeles Galaxy v Houston Dynamo Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

Match Information

Opponent: LA Galaxy

Location: Dignity Health Sports Park, Carson California

Game Time: March 7th – 7:00 PST

How to Watch: TSN 1/4 (Canada), MLS Live on ESPN+ (US)

Referee: Ismail Elfath

Guess the Starting XI and Final Score Contest

As is routine for every match, we have our regular Guess the Starting XI and Final Score contest. Let’s see how good you are at getting into the manager’s head and predicting how the game will turn out. In addition, we will have monthly, fun, bonus prediction categories, such as yellow cards, substitutions, goal scorers, etc.

Contest Details

  • Contest article will be posted on Thursday for weekend matches and Mondays for Wednesday matches.
  • We will keep track of first half, second half, and monthly winners so that late joiners will have something to play for.
  • I will have a separate ‘contest’ for Voyageurs and CONCACAF League.
  • As the MLS season is 34 matches, each half of the season will be based on 17 matches, with your worst two match predictions being dropped. This will allow everyone a few misses or bad guesses throughout the season.
  • Predictions will be ‘valid’ if posted HERE half-an-hour prior to the lineup being officially announced, which means 1.5 hours before kickoff.

How Scoring is Determined

  • You receive 1 point for every player you correctly guess to be in the Starting XI. Receive 1 bonus point for correctly predicting 10 starters. Receive 3 bonus points for correctly predicting 11 starters.
  • You get 5 points for correctly guessing Win/Lose/Draw.
  • You receive 1 point for correctly guessing each team’s final score. Receive 1 bonus point for correctly guessing both teams final score (for a total of 3).
  • That means, if you correctly predict the Starting XI, Final Score, and Winner, you can earn 22 points!
  • After each match, I will tally the scores and update the standings, which will be posted with the following match’s prediction article. I will typically post three sets of standings. First, the results from the previous match. Second, the monthly standings. Third, the first/second half standings (with your worst two match predictions removed).
  • March Bonus Category: None

Previous Match Standings

Sporting Kansas City Prediction Results

Rank User Total Lineup Bonus Winner Score
Rank User Total Lineup Bonus Winner Score
1 Fudmur 22 11 3 5 3
2 Victor Abbott 20 11 3 5 1
3 Westsider13 19 10 1 5 3
4 Mriswith 15 11 3 0 1
5 Tres_Tristes_Tigres 14 11 3 0 0
5 freewheeling 14 11 3 0 0
5 TR M 14 11 3 0 0
5 edmondk 14 11 3 0 0
5 rtomsheck 14 11 3 0 0
5 GreyHouseEffect 14 11 3 0 0
5 OniNoTim 14 11 3 0 0
5 TillmanD 14 11 3 0 0
5 Isabelt 14 11 3 0 0
5 AmandaC 14 11 3 0 0
5 Jitsuo 14 11 3 0 0
5 chuckbiscuits 14 11 3 0 0
5 Atlantis B 14 11 3 0 0
5 J Stebeck 14 11 3 0 0
5 Jph003 14 11 3 0 0
5 Mykvechkin 14 11 3 0 0
5 WhitcapsfanfromOntario 14 11 3 0 0
5 Norwegian Would 14 11 3 0 0
5 tecate 14 11 3 0 0
5 The Squirrel 14 11 3 0 0
5 Stick of Butter 14 11 3 0 0
26 Airos 11 10 1 0 0

Prediction Review (Sporting Kansas City) - Courtesy of Tres_Tristes_Tigres

Marc Dos Santos put out a very predictable lineup for the home opener, leading to all but two participants getting 11/11 on the lineup prediction. As is usually the case to start the season, an optimistic fan base led to the lineup being the only place of scoring for all but four of our participants. Only three people predicted a Whitecaps loss. Congrats on your appropriate pessimism, with Fudmur getting a perfect 22 points, correctly predicting the final 3-1 scoreline as well. If not for one lineup miscue by Westsider13, we would have seen two perfect scores. Overall, it was a good week of predictions, but optimism prevented it from being a GREAT week of predictions. We will see how that factors into the LA Galaxy match predictions.

Match Preview (LA Galaxy)

The Vancouver Whitecaps travel down to LA-adjacent to face the Galaxy. LA got their 2020 season off to a rocky start with a 1-1 draw against Houston. More importantly though, highly anticipated Mexican Javier ‘Chicharito’ Hernandez had a very quiet match.

The Caps should have a couple of reinforcements in their lineup as both Owusu and Bikel had their visa issues cleared up and are at practice this week. Both could factor into the Starting XI, given how poor the club was in midfield against Sporting Kansas City. Owusu is the more likely to feature, as he is up to full fitness. Although, Bikel is not too far behind.

The main questions for the Whitecaps lineup is how do they change? Do we see the 4-2-3-1 from the preseason? Does MDS go with the 4-4-2 from the home opener, or does he go with the 4-3-3 that he said was the long-term plan?

If there are lineup changes, and I suspect there will be, who is most likely to be replaced? Ranko is still having visa issues while Godoy remains injured, so we are likely to see the Cornelius/Khmiri duo. Teibert was the captain for the opening match, but if Owusu and Bikel are even slightly available you have to think that Teibert is on the the bench. What about up front? Reyna does well as a second striker, or right behind the lead guy, as Hasslis2ndshirt pointed out in their new weekly column. Does Montero see the field? In my opinion, Dajome did not have a good first match, but it seems like the feelings on him are 50/50 currently, so does he sit out? The Caps don’t really have a lot of options right now on the right hand side. Milinkovic or Reyna could go over there, but they are both left-side guys.

LA Galaxy will be playing their home opener and Chicharito will want to impress in front of the home fans. His arrival has been a long time coming and he will want to endear himself to the club; to show that he is a suitable replacement for Zlatan. Expected a fired up club, meaning that it will be a challenge for the Caps to come away with any points. However, the Caps have shown themselves to be better on the road of late, and in this wacky world, don’t be surprised if the Caps come away with a draw or, gasp, a win!

Injury Update (will update as information becomes available)

Injury: Erik Godoy

Suspension: None

Visa Issues: Ranko Veselinovic

Waiting to be Transferred: Lee Dong-Gyeong

My Prediction

Lineup Prediction:

Score Prediction: 2-1 LA Galaxy