Week 2 of the 2016 USL season is already underway, with local side LA Galaxy II playing their second game of the season on Wednesday against Saint Louis FC, coming out 3-0 winners. Jack McBean had a goal in each half and Bryam Rebellon scored a golazo just before the break to dispatch Saint Louis, who are on their first Western road trip in their history, and have endured a brutal start so far.
The Orange County Blues hope that hurt continues, as they’ll host Saint Louis on Saturday evening at Anteater Stadium in Irvine (7 pm PT). The Blues dropped their season opener last weekend, and while Saint Louis will have the advantage of having played an extra game, they may be getting demoralized already in the young season, with two road losses to their name and another road game coming up in quick succession.
Expect forward Trevin Caesar to make his competitive debut for the Blues on Saturday — he’s back from international duty with Trinidad & Tobago, where he scored two goals in World Cup qualifying this week, and he’ll likely be leading the line for OC within a game or two. Otherwise, Blues head coach Oliver Wyss has a lot of new faces on his squad, but he’ll likely begin settling on a core group over the next few games, as players rise or fall to the occasion in these early matches.
Meanwhile, Galaxy II don’t have a long layoff, either, as they’re playing their first road game of the season Saturday against Real Monarchs SLC in Utah (6 pm PT). This may be one of the match-ups to watch this season for USL and MLS fans — both teams have plenty of talent as the link between strong academies and MLS first teams, and these teams will likely win a lot of games while playing attractive soccer.
What should help LA in this game is that Real Salt Lake’s first team is currently ravaged by injuries and suspensions, and local reports are that a couple of Real Monarchs players will be called up to the MLS side for their game on Saturday against Sporting KC. Obviously, the priority for these organizations is the MLS team first and foremost, so that may open the door for Galaxy II, who have been impressive in their opening two games, to take advantage on the road and get a win against a distracted Monarchs squad.
As always, you can catch these games on YouTube, live and on demand (Monarchs-Galaxy II stream, OC-Saint Louis stream), and if you want to watch some local soccer, be sure to go to Anteater Stadium Saturday for OC Blues-Saint Louis.