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Star trio pays off as Galaxy wins title

Landon Donovan, left, fighting Houston’s Corey Ashe for possession, scored the winner.

Getty Images

Landon Donovan, left, fighting Houston’s Corey Ashe for possession, scored the winner.

CARSON, Calif. — Landon Donovan scored in the 72nd minute on passes from Robbie Keane and David Beckham, and the Los Angeles Galaxy's three superstars won their first MLS Cup together with a 1-0 victory over the Houston Dynamo on Sunday night.

Beckham won his first MLS championship in the final game of his groundbreaking five-year contract with the Galaxy, which rolled through the postseason to the franchise's third league title after finishing with MLS' best regular-season record.

Beckham punctuated a solid performance in the MLS Cup with an alert header to Keane, the Irish striker who joined Los Angeles in midseason. Keane made a run and eventually fed Donovan, who struck home his record 20th MLS playoff goal.

Beckham lifted Donovan, the MLS Cup MVP, off his feet with a hug after the final whistle in the Galaxy's record seventh appearance in the league title game.

Los Angeles had the most expensive and highest-profile roster in MLS history but got full value from its three highest-priced players, particularly in the playoffs. Beckham's assist was his fourth of a stellar postseason, and Donovan scored in each of the Galaxy's final three playoff games. Keane was a serious offensive force despite flying across the world in his spare time on Irish national team duty.

A sellout crowd of 30,281 at Home Depot Center — where the Galaxy didn't lose a game all season long — cheered Los Angeles past the Dynamo, which hadn't lost in nine games since Sept. 10. Houston struggled for offense in the MLS Cup after losing leading scorer and league MVP runner-up Brad Davis to a torn quadriceps in the Eastern Conference championship.

L.A. 1

Houston 0

Star trio pays off as Galaxy wins title 11/21/11 [Last modified: Monday, November 21, 2011 12:03am]
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