On Friday morning, MLS announced that Saturday’s season opener between the Galaxy and LAFC at the Rose Bowl had been postponed due to the possibility of severe weather. About five hours later, the teams announced a new date for the game: Tuesday, July 4.
Tickets purchased for Saturday’s game will be honored for the rescheduled game.
With forecasts of heavy rain, thunderstorms and the possibility of flooding and lightning that would force players and spectators to take shelter in place, MLS officials decided it was unwise to go ahead with the match, which was expected to attract nearly 80,000 fans. But scheduling the game at the Rose Bowl was something of “a Rubik’s cube,” said Jens Weiden, the stadium’s CEO, because of the team’s busy schedule.
The solution? The Galaxy moved its traditional July 4 home game from Dignity Health Sports Park and switched opponents from St. Louis City to LAFC. Kick-off will be at 7:30 PM
The game in St. Louis City will now be played at Carson on September 10.
Weather concerns also led the league to postpone Sporting Kansas City’s season opener in Portland. That game, which was originally scheduled for Saturday, will be played on Monday-evening.
“Calendars are not easy. But there’s no sport more important to us than football, so we pretty much opened up our entire calendar to the Galaxy because they were the home team,” Weiden had said before announcing the make-up date.
By mid-week, more than 70,000 tickets for Saturday’s scheduled match had been distributed, and Weiden said it was not ideal to play the match on a weekday as some were nearly sold out. But playing on vacation was an acceptable compromise.
“When you have a game that’s pretty much sold out, it shows that people want to come here and see it,” he said. “It’s the best matchup in MLS.”
The Galaxy will now begin their regular season on March 4, on the road against FC Dallas, and LAFC, the reigning MLS champions, will play its first game on the same date at BMO Stadium, which hosts the Portland Timbers.
Saturday’s game would be the big game of the opening weekend of the regular season, the first with Apple TV as the league’s broadcast partner. The company paid $2.5 billion to stream the league’s games for the next 10 seasons.