Who needs Landon Donovan when you have Mike Magee?
Magee scored a hat trick in the opening game of the season to pace the LA Galaxy to a 4-0 home win over the Chicago Fire.
The defending MLS Cup champions eased into the new season. New arrival Carlo Cudicini misplayed a pass out of the back half an hour into the match. Chris Rolfe latched onto it and bore down on goal, putting his shot narrowly wide under pressure from Leonardo. The Brazilian center back was making his first league appearance since April 2011, when he blew out his knee in a game against the Fire.
Magee, born in Chicago, opened the scoring eight minutes later. Robbie Keane pushed the ball forward in the box. When Steven Kinney went to clear, Todd Dunivant got a cleat on it, and the ball spiraled to the center of the box. Before it could touch grass, Magee swiveled and one-timed a volley past Sean Johnson.
Chicago's best chance came on the hour mark when Maicon Santos slammed a free kick on target that Cudicini had to save. From the resulting corner, Jalil Anibaba headed over with Cudicini caught out.
Magee punished his hometown for its misses. In the 68th minute, A.J. DeLaGarza surged forward and passed across to but slightly behind Keane. The Irish striker shuffled to his right away from several defenders and slipped the ball through to Magee, who cut back and slammed a shot into the top corner of the goal.
A handful of minutes later, Johnson blocked a close shot from the outside of Keane's foot, and the rebound fell to Magee. The 28-year-old took one touch to set up the ball and another to spin into another volley. For Magee's first career hat trick he celebrated with an imitation of Keane's tuck-and-roll.
With 10 minutes left in the match, Magee and substitute Michael Stephens combined to work a corner high to the far post, where Omar Gonzalez headed it down into danger. Keane tucked the goal away and demonstrated how his celebration is properly executed.
Follow ZAC LEE RIGG on Twitter or shoot him an email
- Sports & Recreation
- Carlo Cudicini
- Robbie Keane