LAFC 5 – 3 LA Galaxy

There is a lot to be told about the Los Angeles Derby, better known as El Trafico – one of the most heated rivalries in the MLS.  Beyond the head-to-head rivalry between the two stars (record-holder Carlos Vela with 34 goals this season), and Zlatan Ibrahimovic (world-soccer powerhouse, with 30 goals this season), there is also the rivalry between the two clubs from across town. 

In its short life, LAFC already posted a few impressive records since playing its first MLS match in 2018, with Vela’s personal record, a single-season record of 72 points, and a goal differential of 48, which has never been done.  There’s a lot LAFC managed to do in its short lifespan, but winning their neighbors from across town was only done yesterday for the first time ever.

In the five meetings between the teams, LA Galaxy had won two, tied three and never lost game to LAFC.  In fact, the last meeting between the two ended in a 3-3 tie, and the Galaxy won LAFC in July.  So Zlatan Ibrahimovic and his team came into this match on the back of history, looking to advance in the playoffs another step towards their sixth MLS championship, a quest that was cut short by Carlos Vela and the LAFC crew.  Interestingly, Vela scored on his own eight goals in total against LA Galaxy, scoring in every one of six the clashes between the two sides.

LAFC Celebrating Vela's Goals

LAFC Celebrating Vela’s Goals; Photo Credit: LAFC Twitter

Vela put the hosts up front early with a cross from Diego Rossi into the left side of the box, skilfully scoring past three Glalaxy defenders (16’).  An assist from Brian Rodriguez late in the first half found Carlos Vela from close range, and let him double LAFC’s lead (40’).

A quick-fire response came a minute later, with Ibrahimovic winning a ball and passing to Cristian Pavon, who scored the visitors’ first goal (41’).  Ibrahimovic then went on to equalize, winning the ball in a shoulder challenge and scored, also thanks to an error made by LAFC’s goalkeeper Tyler Miller, who didn’t catch the ball and let it pass into the net between his legs (55’).

Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Zlatan Ibrahimovic In Despair; Photo Credit: MLS Soccer

Carlos Vela kept on producing magic on the field, and won a ball for an assist to Diego Rossi who scored (66’).  Building on the momentum, Rossi then sent a cross to Adama Diomande who doubled the hosts’ lead two minutes later (68’).

LA Galaxy’s Rolf Feltscher headed in another goal from a free kick, where he was strangely in close range and not covered by any LAFC defense (77’).

But Adama Diomande dribbled a ball from midfield, and another fantastic finish ended with his second, and LAFC’s fifth and final goal of the match (80’).

LAFC will host Seattle Sounders for the Western Conference Finals on Wednesday, October 30th.