Davy Arnaud scored one goal and created another Saturday night, and goalkeeper Jimmy Nielsen made two exceptional saves as the Kansas City Wizards defeated the Galaxy, 2-0, at the Home Depot Center.
The loss was the second in a row for Coach Bruce Arena's suddenly slumping team and the fourth in six games in what has been an abysmal August for the league leader.
The Galaxy has lost seven of its last 11 games in all competitions, including the U.S. Open Cup, the CONCACAF Champions League and a friendly against Real Madrid.
The Galaxy (13-5-4) started out slowly and was under pressure for the first seven minutes or so before the players found their feet. Had the Wizards not been the second-lowest scoring team in the league, they might have grabbed the lead while they had the opportunity.
As it was, Kansas City went ahead in the 12th minute when the Galaxy defense left the door wide open, just as it had in the fourth minute of a 1-0 loss to the Earthquakes at San Jose last weekend.
This time, Wizards forward Kei Kamara raced past Leonardo, the Galaxy's Brazilian defender apparently lacking the pace or energy to close Kamara down, and crossed the ball into the goal area.
The other Galaxy players in the vicinity were slow to react, and Arnaud banged the ball in past goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts.
Ricketts did well to prevent it from becoming 2-0 in the 36th minute when he foiled a Kansas City break by racing out to upend forward Birahim Diop and strip him of the ball.
There was no foul on the play and no protest from Kansas City (7-9-5). It had more to do with Diop being 31 years old and a tad slow for a striker.
Not that the Galaxy front line was any better. For the second week in a row, Mike Magee squandered a gilt-edged scoring chance when poor technique caused him to skew a shot wide when it would have been easier to direct it on target.
Landon Donovan, who apparently will not be making a move to Europe this year because the transfer window closes Wednesday and rumors of a move to Everton or elsewhere have dried up, needs more help up front than Magee and Edson Buddle can give him, but it has not been forthcoming.
The half ended with Kansas City holding on to a 1-0 lead courtesy of the only shot the 45 minutes had provided.
Four minutes into the second half, the Galaxy produced its first bright moment. Chris Klein fed the ball to Donovan, who slipped it inside for Chris Birchall, who was denied a goal only by a foot save by Nielsen.
In the 58th minute, Birchall was again foiled. This time Nielsen threw himself to his right to make a splendid save on a close-range shot by the Galaxy midfielder.
Kansas City doubled its advantage in the 70th minute when Birchall fouled Ryan Smith and Arnaud lofted the resulting free kick into the penalty area. Jimmy Conrad's shot went in off the left post.