Chivatown Post: Defense Rules Edition

CARSON, CA - JULY 18: Riley: All business for 90 minutes. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images)

Chivas USA are coming off a midweek victory over the Portland Timbers, at home no less, and spirits are high in Chivatown. The second SuperClasico of the season is literally just around the corner, and Chivas fans hope the result is the same this time around as last, for a couple of reasons. Not only do the Goats want to get a winning streak going against the Galaxy, but they also want to get the win in order to close ground in the playoff race. All in all, it's a big week in Chivatown.

Let's take a look at the recent news concerning the club:

First up, Luis Bueno had an article posted on the league website Tuesday about the critical stretch Chivas has in their schedule. I doubt this happened on purpose, but in addition to the game against Portland yesterday, Chivas will play the Galaxy, then play the Timbers again July 28 and then the Galaxy again August 12. Needless to say, the schedule quirk will mean Chivas will get to know these teams very well over the next few weeks, and vice versa. Regardless, the so-so league form through the halfway point in the season means the Goats have to pick up more points in the second half of the season if they want to make the playoffs. Coach Robin Fraser and defender Danny Califf weigh in on this run of matches, with somewhat contrasting opinions.

Following the win, Bueno has an article posted today on the league website about the shutout streak the team is carrying in MLS play. Obviously, we all know that Kennedy and the defense have been the highlights of the season so far, and they deserve the plaudits they've been getting recently. They now have the distinction of allowing the fewest goals in the league and scoring the fewest goals in the league. You're halfway there to being an unbeatable team, fellas!

Bueno also has a good profile of Dan Kennedy after his All-Star selection on the league website from Tuesday. He certainly didn't have an easy road to get where he is, but I can imagine it's that much sweeter as a result.

Guess who the second-best passer in the league is? According to Devin Pleuler on the league website, it's James Riley, in a post from Tuesday. The right back is the only Goat in the top 15, and even Pleuler is surprised to see Riley rank so high. What was a little surprising to me was to see that several full backs, including Vancouver's Young-Pyo Lee and Kansas City's Chance Myers, were also on the list. It seems mobile two-way fullbacks really are an asset in this league, and Chivas have one in Riley.

On the Chivas Youth Academy front, the U18 team, currently participating in the USSDA Finals Week in Houston, lost an entertaining match Wednesday 2-0 to Solar Chelsea SC. Although Chivas played Solar well for most of the match, they couldn't hold out for the entire length, and Colton Missimo opened the scoring in the 74th minute. Alan Winn followed that up with a second goal in the 79th minute. With the result, Chivas have no chance to advance to the Championship match, even though they have one game left in the tournament. Despite the disappointing result, it was a fantastic run by the U18s, and here's hoping this is the first of many such runs for the Academy teams. Congrats on a great season!

Former Chivas player (and all-time appearances co-leader) Jonathan Bornstein is remaining at Tigres, after a reported loan or transfer to Atlante fell through. He's hardly played for the Monterrey-based team, though, so it is unclear if he'll get a chance this season, which begins this weekend in Mexico. Over at Pro Soccer Talk, Steve Davis feels bad for Bornstein's predicament, and reasons he would be a good addition for most MLS clubs, if he could find a way to get out of his current situation.

What do you think? Leave a comment below!

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