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LA Galaxy fall 3-1 to Colorado in last preseason match

Feb 23, 2019; Carson, CA, USA; Colorado Rapids midfielder Dillon Serna (17) is congratulated after scoring a first half goal against the Los Angeles Galaxy at Dignity Health Sports Park. (Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports)

CARSON, Calif. — In their last preseason test, the LA Galaxy fell 3-1 to the Colorado Rapids on Saturday night at Dignity Health Sports Park.

The Galaxy were without several key players. Sebastian Lletget, Juninho, Perry Kitchen, Giovani dos Santos and Jonathan dos Santos were all listed as unavailable for the contest. Such an early test of the team’s depth chart, especially in the midfield, could be helpful for new head coach Guillermo Barros Schelotto, who may need to practice roster rotation later in the season as the pressure of a crowded schedule increases.

In the 15th minute, goalkeeper David Bingham was substituted out after taking a shot directly to his face. Matt Lampson took his place for the remainder of the game. There was no update available on Bingham’s status immediately after the match, but he did leave the field walking on his own.

Colorado Rapids forward Kei Kamara, an offseason addition from the Vancouver Whitecaps, scored the game’s first goal in the 42nd minute, beating Galaxy defender Jorgen Skjelvik on a header. Minutes later, Kamara defended a dangerous opportunity for Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Diego Rubio, who also joined the Rapids this offseason, doubled Colorado’s lead in the 69th minute after beating Galaxy defender Daniel Steres to the ball and chipping it right over Lampson’s head into the back of the net. Colorado’s general defensive style of play received a notable upgrade with the addition of MLS-tested firepower.

Pressure was mounting for the Galaxy, who responded to a vocal crowd at Dignity Health Sports Park. Ibrahimovic found a response for nervous Galaxy fans in the 77th minute, cutting the deficit in half with a header goal over Colorado defender and Swedish compatriot Axel Sjoberg.

Rubio essentially silenced hopes of a comeback for Los Angeles with a goal in the 85th minute. Colorado forward Andre Shinyashiki capitalized on a mistake from Daniel Steres and made an easy pass to Rubio to put it in the back of the net, giving Colorado the 3-1 lead it held until the end of the match.

An offseason front office overhaul and roster moves will take time to show fruit on the field, but the Galaxy have run out of time to practice team chemistry without consequence. The Galaxy open their 2019 MLS campaign next Saturday at 8 p.m. ET, hosting the Chicago Fire at Dignity Health Sports Park.

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