Steven Gerrard and Giovani dos Santos were in the thick of the action for the LA Galaxy in Saturday night’s clash with arch rivals San Jose Earthquakes as they combined to open the scoring in a hard-fought 1-1 draw at Stanford Stadium.
After failing to find the back of the net in their previous three MLS games, the Galaxy came close to snapping their scorless streak shortly after half-time when Gerrard headed a cross from Dos Santos just inches wide of the post.
The former Liverpool captain then saw a long-range shot cannon off the woodwork in the 55th-minute, before forcing a fine save from San Jose goalkeeper David Bingham on the hour mark following a neat one-two with Mike Magee.
The breakthrough eventually came nine minutes later, though, when the 36-year-old midfielder sent a perfect cross into the box from the right wing for ex-Tottenham Hotspur forward Dos Santos to nod home his seventh goal of the season.
Bruce Arena’s men would have to settle for a point in the end, however, after former LA striker Chad Barrett came off the bench to provide some late-game heroics for the Earthquakes, heading in a free-kick from Shea Salinas in the 90th-minute to earn his side a share of the spoils.
The Galaxy also had Ashley Cole sent off deep into injury time for a late tackle from behind amid an ill-tempered conclusion, and head coach Arena was far from pleased with how the officials handled the closing stages of the encounter.
"I think if the officials look at the last 15 minutes of that game they’d be very disappointed in the performance,” he told lagalaxy.com at the final whistle. “That was a poor display in the last 15 minutes.”
On whether he would consider appealing Cole’s red card, the former US national team boss added: “I would think so. I think it was a very poor call and that whole thing was poorly done so I would anticipate we would do that.”
Saturday’s result leaves the Galaxy sitting in fifth place in the Western Conference on 23 points – nine behind the first-placed Colorado Rapids, having recorded five wins, eight draws and suffered three defeats in their first 16 games this season.
They now face a trip to the Portland Timbers for Wednesday night's US Open Cup last-16 tie, before hosting the Vancouver Whitecaps at the StubHub Center next weekend.