Magee winner lifts Galaxy to opening playoff win over Red Bulls

MageeLANY (Getty)

The chants of "Red Bull Reject" rang out in Red Bull Arena, but the player they were aimed at didn't hear them.

No, Mike Magee was too focused on the task at hand, helping the No. 1 seed Los Angeles Galaxy post an opening playoff win against the New York Red Bulls, which just so happened to be Magee's former team.

Magee did just that on Sunday, collecting a David Beckham pass and blasting home the lone goal in the Galaxy's 1-0 victory over New York.

One goal was all the Galaxy needed as goalkeeper Josh Saunders made a handful of stunning saves and the stingy Los Angeles defense slowed down a New York attack that had been playing well in recent weeks.

"When you go on the road, you want to be in this position. To go home with three points," said LA head coach Bruce Arena. "It's a good position to be in, but this series is far from over."

The Red Bulls created more of the chances on the day, but failed to really test Saunders early on, leaving the door open for Los Angeles to jump out to the 1-0 lead in the 15th minute when Beckham picked out Magee with a long past into the penalty area. The Red Bulls defense lost sight of Magee, in part because several of their players were signaling for an offside call.

"It's a little tricky on the goal," Backe said. "First, (Robbie) Kean was offside, but I think we have seven guys raise their hand and call for an offside, and of course you can't do that.

"You can't give away a goal like this," Backe said. "You just have to be more sharp. It's a frustrating goal to concede."

The Red Bulls really began to test Los Angeles in the second half, with Saunders making a clutch stop on a Dane Richards shot early on. Saunders made arguably his best save of the day in the 50th minute when he slapped away a close-range Luke Rodgers shot.

The Galaxy had a golden opportunity to make it 2-0 when Landon Donovan got away with a push on Tim Ream and broke in free on goal, but Red Bulls goalkeeper Frank Rost made a clutch save.

The Red Bulls controlled the play late, only to see a late Marquez chance halted by another clutch Saunders save. New York never got any closer to finding an equalizer.

The end of the match was marred by a scuffle that began after Rafa Marquez threw a ball at Landon Donovan after the final whistle. Adam Cristman responded by pushing Marquez, which set off a scuffle that saw Marquez attempt a headbutt and punch at Cristman and Galaxy midfielder Juninho make contact with Red Bulls defender Stephen Keel.

Both Marquez and Juninho were issued red cards after the match, ruling them both out of the second leg, which is set for Thursday at the Home Depot Center.

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71 Responses to Magee winner lifts Galaxy to opening playoff win over Red Bulls

  1. Reality check says:

    Junihno wasn’t trying to hit anyone should have gotten a yellow. Marquez should be suspended more than one game.

  2. Poo says:

    So both of NY’s DPs have gotten reds for dumb BS and forced to miss critical games in the last 2 weeks.

    I really thought NY would equalize, saunders was nuts.

  3. Snare says:

    This is why playoffs are loved so much by people in the States. We love the intensity and emotion that has been present in most of the games so far. I understand why some fans want to get rid of the playoff system in MLS, but as someone who just became a soccer/MLS fan a few years ago, and who grew up watching playoffs in every major sport in the USA, I really hope they stay. Oh, and GO RSL!!!!

  4. Tommy Mac says:

    Classless on the field reflects classlessness in the coaching box. Soler and Backe have created a circus. If Henry, Marquez and Rogers spent half as much energy playing smart football as they did yelling at the ref and cheap-shotting opponents… but what do they care? This is not a “team” or professional organization by any stretch of the imagination,

  5. Chris says:

    Marquez and Juninho cards a win/win for New York.

  6. Khan says:

    Rafa Marquez should be kicked off the team.

  7. John B says:

    Are you serious??? Keel has a bloody lip from that scum’s flying right elbow. Rafa, Juninho and Christman should all be out for the next game. It all started because Rafa tossed the ball at Donovan! Seriously guys, a slight overreaction by Christman.

  8. John B says:

    Landon needs to stop being such a drama queen. “They are so dirty”… really? I didn’t know that Juninho was actually the soccer version of Tito Ortiz after the 94th minute!!

  9. Dimidri says:

    After a performance like that, one has to think that Donovan Ricketts will go unprotected in the expansion draft…not a bad player to have on Montreal by any stretch.

  10. Catenaccio says:

    The Red Bulls just absolutely suck. Once again, a player who was terrible here in the Big Apple (in this case Magee), just crucifies his former team. I also think Marquez won’t be here next season. Will demand a transfer and will probably end up back in Mexico playing in LMF. Terrible game. Backe is a terrible coach. If he can’t get it done this year, he deserves to be fired. The “European” experiment is just not working with him and Soler at the helm.

  11. Khan says:

    Haha he is one to talk about being dirty. Takes so many cheap shots.

  12. Poo says:

    Rafa Marquez should be kicked

  13. abc says:

    The Galaxy shouldn’t protect either goalkeeper in the expansion draft, since they can only lose one and both are great.

  14. jeff says:

    No way Juninho deserved Red.

  15. Get A Team in the 5 Boros says:

    A little disturbed to see “DJ Solli” at halftime in that Red Bull turntable truck with that violin girl. He’s suspended for his dim witted tackle last game. Just odd. Could you imagine Johnny Evans after the Man City debacle doing that at Old Trafford the next week?

    And again, Hans Backe (who inexplicably refused to put Agudelo in) said inn his post game comments that this was one of the best performances all year. He’s delusional. He may need psychiatric care.

  16. Lil' Zeke says:

    Sorry I love Juninho but he kind of came flying in there with his elbow. Keel made a pathetic meal of it of course, and that crap is so tired. But I think two reds is where we’ll end up.

  17. Joamiq says:

    Nah, Rafa was just being a veteran and stepping up, took himself out of consideration for the return leg in order to give the team a better shot

  18. Lil' Zeke says:

    A 0% overreaction by Chrisman. The old shoulder push. Would you rather he Kermit Waashingtoned the guy?

  19. Scott A says:

    Dane Richards has turned out to be a fantastic player for us.

  20. LiquidYogi says:

    Rafa Marquez shouldn’t be

  21. SD says:

    +1 and lol

  22. bottlcaps says:

    Marques: OUT

    Neymar: IN

    Maybe not, but we can always dream! And what was Neymar doing in NJ on a cold Sunday night, in RedBull regalia?

    link to

  23. Deport Marquez says:

    Rafa Marquez should be sent back to Mexico.

  24. sandtrout says:

    In case you ever start to improve your opinion of Rafa Marquez, he’s always happy to remind you — “Don’t forget, I’m still a little b@tch!”

  25. sandtrout says:

    I don’t care one way or the other about NYRB, but I love to watch Richards. He seems to be a good character, and he makes things happen on the field.

  26. Sevag S says:

    Who was that clown that put a choke hold on Juninho? That punk deserves a suspension/red card too!!!

  27. Jason says:

    Marquez just might have won this series for NYRB, by volunteering to take himself out of the next game and taking out Juninho. That’s the best defense he has played all season.

  28. Dan says:

    I was there and clearly saw Donovan provoking Marquez at the end. But of course, MArquez will never be given the benefit of the doubt due to his previous history.

  29. Brice says:

    I must of missed that clause in my copy of the Laws of the Game, that if you are provoked you are allowed to throw a soccer ball at an opponent, try and head butt an opponent (and miss), take a swing at an opponent (and miss) and then flop on the ground and hold your face when no one makes contact with you.

  30. Bryan says:

    Landon for sure does his fair share of trash talking…not in a Luke Rogers way but more low key. As a USMNT fan I completely endorse him having a few parting words for Rafa

  31. Dinho says:

    It’s right there in Chapter 13, Section 9: “If I’m an arrogant past-my-prime sh*thead, I get to blame others for my stupid and childish acts (see also Ruiz, Carlos)”

  32. Dan says:

    Believe me, I don’t disagree with any of these guys. But Donovan is a special case too. I have seen him play since San Jose, he likes trash talking when he is winning, if things arent going his way he just hides.

  33. Ryan says:

    Donovan probably did say something.

    You know, I met Rafa Marquez after the FC Dallas match. He is actually a really nice guy, and gave me his autograph and let me take a picture with him.

    Of course, that’s probably because I’m Mexican! :)

  34. dan says:

    NY’s DPs are dirty, and Marquez most of all is just a bad person.

    Marquez and Donovan don’t get along and i’m sure both had words for each other, the difference is LD didn’t try to hurt him. Juninho red was bogus and both Keel and Marquez deserved the red.

    In the end of the day NY are done already, LA hasn’t lost a single game at home in over a year. Good luck energy drink losers

  35. dan says:

    HA! Nice Dinho

  36. RyanTheArkansasRazorback says:

    Did Keane shake Henry’s hand? I want to hear a bit of story on that one. Seems like Keane has a reason to dislike Henry even more than Marquez and Donovan hate each other.

  37. gmonsoon43 says:

    Harkes was absolutely hilarious when they showed the replay. The whole fly must have flown in his eye line.

  38. KC says:

    Hopefully Marquez gets what he deserves: a one way ticket out of MLS and into a real league with real soccer player. He is too much of a player to be wasting his talent with a bunch of no-skills hacks  in the US

  39. Matt S says:

    It’s probably cuz you’re Mex…. oh wait you already said it. <_<

  40. Matt S says:

    That’s true, Marquez is such an amazing talent that he is doing the rest of the league a favor by slowly trotting around the field, making bad passes, taking horrible free kicks, and backing off in defense. It wouldn’t be fair to the league if he showed off his real talent. It must be because he isn’t getting paid enough.

  41. Annelid Gustator says:

    That was funny.

  42. Annelid Gustator says:


  43. Raisa says:

    LA Galaxy is equal to Real Madrid. New York Red Bulls equal Barcelona. This is the Real Madrid vs Barcelona version of MLS. Just look at which player came from what previous team!

  44. boyton says:

    The Arena was barely 2/3 full and the crowd was taken out of the game in the first half following the Galaxy’s goal. The Red Bulls can’t even sellout their only playoff game of the year? Unbelievable. They can sellout a Chicago game in August but not a playoff game versus the top team in the league L.A.. What gives with that?

    There were two HUGE ruts running across the field on either side of the center line. There was a smaller rut in front of one of the goal boxes. It looked like a snow plow had gotten out of control a scraped the turf off of the pitch. A shame for the Red Bulls with their national television audience.

  45. Good Jeremy says:

    Ah Marquez, the walking stereotype. Every city needs a villain, and he plays it quite well. I’ll fondly remember his vicious assaults on Cobi Jones.

  46. Good Jeremy says:

    lol I thought you said rats at first. That would have been much more entertaining.

  47. briank says:

    I’d give them a pass on attendance when much of the NY/NJ area lost power due to a storm. I tried to get to the match via public transit and was stuck on a train for 3 hours.

    But–I think they should be filling that place for every home game, you’re correct there.

    The first LA match was cancelled by a hurricane, and this one….

  48. Metro4ever says:

    Was there something you saw that nobody didn’t? How does Keel deserve a red card? He was going to break up the ruffle and gets hit.

  49. Metro4ever says:

    don’t you read the news ? There was a snow storm the day before the game. Yeah, try playing after that with no impact.

  50. pasion_cristalina says:

    Apparently everyone missed Henry making zero attempts to avoid having his cleats ‘make contact’ with Beckham’s back towards the end of the game.

  51. Nick says:

    Passion, I saw that, it was cheap and the guy is showing me less class than coach.
    We need to get Ricardo Clark back in the league to kick Marquez in the ribs while he’s on the ground.

  52. Eddie says:

    Seriously, DJ Solli on the decks while suspended for a red card. His finger dancing was classic, too. What an embarrassment. Not just today … this organization, this manager.

  53. Shane says:

    I think one of the worst things about the next game, is that it isn’t on until 11pm EST. Don Garber has a game begging for high ratings, and he decides to have it at such a stupid time. What other league in this country has a playoff game start at 11pm on the east coast??

  54. lprevolution says:

    The NBA.

  55. Shane says:

    But was one of the teams involved from the East coast? If so, than the NBA is more dumb than I thought. Hope Garber doesn’t follow their lead into a lock-out.

  56. A wise man once says:

    Rafa should definitely be out, Christman maybe, but what about Taino? The guy was throttling Juninho!

    On a side note, it was really fun watching Marquez falling on his back onto the soft grass clutching his face after tripping over Keel.

  57. A wise man once says:

    But I’d say Saunders is slightly better, and he’s paid less. So protect Saunders.

  58. A wise man once says:

    Taino I think. And yeah, he deserved a red more that Juninho did.

  59. A wise man once says:

    You’re joking, right?

  60. Gnarls says:

    That was Teemu Tainio.

  61. Gnarls says:

    I have OJ Simpsons autograph. He must be a really nice guy.

  62. Gnarls says:

    I hope so…

  63. Gnarls says:

    I live in LA and I completely agree. It’s on at 11 pm your time, which means kick off isn’t until 8 PM our time; that’s pretty damn late for a soccer game, or any sporting event. 6:30 or 7 (9:30 or 10 eastern) makes more sense for both coasts and everyone in between… there are people in between, right?

  64. Shane says:

    I think with what happened after the game yesterday, there will be a lot more people in between watching Thursday. If the game was even at 9pm (6pm LA) that wouldn’t be bad at all.

  65. Rory says:

    I’m not entirely sure that Marquez’s hand on his fake fall isn’t what bloodied Keel’s lip.

  66. Rory says:

    Should have been drinking beer with the fans ala Frankie Hejduk a couple years ago. That 2-can of beer helmet Frankie wore didn’t look any worse than the record spinning by Solli.

  67. bryan says:

    yeah, Rafa is such a punk a$$. he starts a fight then flops like a child. i hate him.

  68. bryan says:

    haha the link doesn’t work, but i found the story when i went to their website. Neymar is a Red Bull, BOOOO!

  69. bryan says:

    what’s worse? the fact that since it is a weeknight game, LA can’t sell out. Luckily they get to have more than the usual 7,000, but they can only cap it at 15,000. The contract with the college should have stated that, “In the event of a weeknight playoff game, previous agreements are null and void for each game under those circumstances.”

  70. bryan says:

    yeah, these red card suspensions help NY out. NY not having Rafa and LA not having Juninho is a big blow for LA.