Robbie Keane powered the Los Angeles Galaxy back into the win column as his brace lifted the reigning MLS Cup champions to a 2-0 road win over the Chicago Fire at Toyota Park on Sunday.
The Galaxy entered the match on the back of two successive disappointing defeats, throwing away a two-goal lead against the San Jose Earthquakes before surrendering a stoppage-time goal in a home loss to the Philadelphia Union.
But Keane chipped in with a two-goal performance Sunday to ensure that the skid was not extended to three games, scoring on opposite sides of halftime to improve to six goals on the season.
Los Angeles (7-10-2) gets itself back into the playoff picture, climbing two spots to fifth place in the Western Conference table with 23 points. Chicago (8-6-4) sees its four-game unbeaten run come to a halt as it remains fourth in the East on 28 points.
The Galaxy were able to get in front thanks to a dubious penalty decision midway through the opening period.
Jalil Anibaba blatantly blocked a cross on the edge of the box with his outstretched arm, but it was unclear at first glace whether the infraction occurred inside the penalty area or just outside the box. Nevertheless, referee Jair Marrufo pointed to the spot and Keane converted to hand the visitors the lead.
The Irishman completed his brace and secured three points with an insurance goal 12 minutes from full time.
The Galaxy hit the Fire on the counter-attack and Donovan slipped Keane through on goal with a splitting pass to unlock the Chicago defense. The 32- year-old made no mistake with the chance, firing a shot past goalkeeper Sean Johnson at the near post.
Both sides return to action on July 14 as Chicago welcomes Vancouver Whitecaps FC to Toyota Park while Los Angeles heads to Jeld-Wen Field to take on the Portland Timbers.