Sandy, UT – Landon Donovan propelled the Los Angeles Galaxy to a 3-2 comeback win over Real Salt Lake on Wednesday at Rio Tinto Stadium as he scored two goals and assisted on another.
The hosts dominated the early part of the match and took a two-goal lead in the first 25 minutes with goals from Kyle Beckerman and Alvaro Saborio.
But the Galaxy chipped away at the lead and Donovan netted the first of his two goals shortly before the half-hour mark, while he set up the equalizer for Mike Magee five minutes after the break.
And the U.S. international kept going, scoring in the 68th minute to put his team in front, allowing the Galaxy to claim a second successive win following a three-game losing streak.
RSL entered the match on a seven-game unbeaten run, and it sure looked like that streak would continue based on the first 25 minutes of play.
Fabian Espindola was causing plenty of problems for the L.A. defense and he set up the first goal after nine minutes by pulling the ball back for Beckerman to finish from six yards.
David Beckham went close with a free kick in the 22nd minute, but Salt Lake doubled its advantage two minutes later as Espindola's low cross was redirected past goalkeeper Josh Saunders by Saborio.
The comeback started in the 29th minute when RSL defender Tony Beltran handed Donovan a goal with a terrible back pass that allowed him to cut in front of goalkeeper Nick Rimando and roll the ball into the empty net.
Magee and Donovan combined well in the second half and teamed up on the equalizer in the 50th minute with Donovan playing Magee into the area, where he rolled a shot past Rimando and inside the far post.
Donovan went from provider to scorer in the 68th after a well-weighted ball from Magee in midfield drew Rimando off his line. But Donovan got to it first and rounded the 'keeper, rolling home the go-ahead goal with ease.
Substitute Javier Morales nearly became the hero in stoppage time for RSL, but his shot from inside the area just managed to sail over the crossbar.