Three years ago, the Galaxy had the makings of an MLS dynasty. They had won their third MLS Cup in four seasons.
Alas, that was then. On a hot, humid night in Carson on Saturday, the Galaxy and Colorado Rapids met, owners of the two worst records in the league.
The Galaxy, who were riding a 10-game winless streak, managed to score twice in the first half and went on to a 3-0 victory, winning their first game since June 21, which was the last time they had played the last-place Rapids (6-17-5).
When Romain Alessandrini scored on a penalty kick in the 18th minute, it was the Galaxy's first goal in four games and first at home since July 4.
When Emmanuel Boateng took a head deflection from Gyasi Zardes and drilled it past goalie Zac MacMath five minutes later, the Galaxy were suddenly awash in goals.
Though there was some good fortune in their first goal — the penalty was called on MacMath for throwing a shoulder into Zardes in front of the goal, which might have been accidental — the Galaxy were the attacking team from the outset.
The ball was constantly in the Colorado side, which can hardly be a new sensation for the Rapids, who have won only one of their last 12 games and have not won a road game this season.
The Galaxy (7-14-5) saved their best goal of the game for the second half. Alessandrini was dribbling swiftly down the far endline when he fired a hard, high cross that Zardes leapt and managed to kick in while extended some four feet in the air.
It was first goal of the season for Zardes.
"Hopefully, that opens the floodgates for him," coach Sigi Schmid said.
Even down 3-0, the Rapids could not mount anything resembling a consistent attack.
The Galaxy are still not eliminated from the playoff chase. They have eight games to play.
"We keep building upon this, and wherever it leads at the end of the day, that's where it leads," Schmid said. "We just have to continue to build and grow as a team."
The Galaxy signed French defender Michael Ciani, 33, who has played in top European leagues but only once for France's national team.