SPORTS

Landon Donovan says good-bye on top, LA Galaxy beat New England for fifth MLS Cup title

It was icing on the cake for a brilliant career for Landon Donovan and he and the LA Galaxy raised the MLS Cup trophy for the fifth time.

Robbie Keane, named the match's MVP, gave the LA Galaxy a 2-1 lead in the 111th minute to seal a victory over the New England Revolution on Sunday.

Gyasi Zardes scored in the 52nd minute as the Galaxy won their record fifth league title in the final game for Donovan, the MLS career scoring leader and most accomplished soccer player in U.S. history.

Donovan, Keane and the Galaxy have won three of the last four league championships, celebrating all three on their home field.

After Chris Tierney scored the tying goal in the 79th minute for New England, both teams had golden opportunities before Keane capped his MVP season with the dynamic winner in the second period of extra time.

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Marcelo Sarvas lobbed a long pass to the Irish striker, who gathered it and beat Bobby Shuttleworth with the same poise he showed throughout his 19-goal regular season. Keane celebrated with his usual cartwheel and a hug for Donovan.

Donovan became a champion for the record sixth time in his 14-year MLS career, adding his fourth title with the Galaxy to a pair earned early in his career with San Jose. Coach Bruce Arena won his record fifth MLS Cup for the Galaxy, who haven't lost at home since their season opener.

The 32-year-old Donovan announced his retirement in August, saying he had lost passion for his sport. He still followed the lead of former teammate David Beckham by winning the MLS Cup in his final game.

Despite an outstanding second half and several extra-time chances, New England lost the final for the fifth time — including three times to the Galaxy on extra-time goals. Keane followed in the footsteps of Carlos Ruiz, who beat the Revs in 2002, and Guillermo Ramirez, who did it in 2005.

The Galaxy reached the final by knocking off Supporters' Shield-winning Seattle in the Western Conference finals on the strength of a single away goal. New England got here with a tremendous late-season surge capped by a victory over New York Red Bulls in the East final, ending the MLS career of Thierry Henry.

After a scoreless first half, Zardes got the first goal since Sept. 28 for the 23-year-old native of nearby Hawthorne, California. He erased his late-season slump when he settled a cross from Stefan Ishizaki in the box and slotted it past Bobby Shuttleworth.

But after the Galaxy missed numerous chances to add to their lead, New England pressed for an equalizer and silenced the sellout crowd.

Substitute Patrick Mullins got past Leonardo and Omar Gonzalez on a frantic run before chipping back to Tierney. The defender beat Jaime Penedo for his second playoff goal.

After Tierney's equalizer drained the energy from the Galaxy and their crowd, Teal Bunbury pinged a chip shot off Penedo's crossbar in the 85th minute.

Penedo made a difficult stop on a shot by Mullins in the first extra-time period, Donovan got a free kick early in the second period just atop the penalty area, but sailed it over the bar.

New England pressed after Keane's goal, but Penedo made another huge save on Mullins.

Based on reporting by The Associated Press.

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