Galaxy again own bragging rights with U.S. Open Cup win over LAFC
Galaxy forward Javier "Chicharito" Hernández scored a in the team's 3-1 win over LAFC in Wednesday's U. Galaxy coach Greg Vanney remembers a time when his team’s home was a fortress. But that all changes when LAFC makes the short drive down the Harbor Freeway. With the win, the Galaxy go on to face the Sacramento Republic, which plays in the second-tier USL Championship, in the tournament quarterfinals next month. Just as important, however, is the fact that the win was their first at Dignity Health Sports Park in a month. There were only cheers Wednesday, a night in which the Galaxy dominated from the start, then grew stronger as the game went on.
“They have to remember this feeling because what they put out there tonight is how they should playevery game,” Vanney said of his players. The Galaxy, who wore black armbands in tribute to the victims of Tuesday’s deadly school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, scored their first two goals on breakaways. The second sequence began with the Galaxy defending a corner kick deep in their end. The Galaxy’s Dejan Joveljic and LAFC’s Ryan Hollingshead exchanged goals in the final 10 minutes to account for the final score. “This was the best game we’ve played all year at home,” defender Raheem Edwards said of the Galaxy, who gave up just one shot on target. The game was chippy most of the night, but it reached full boil late in the first half when Hernández undercut Diego Palacios, sending the LAFC player tumbling hard to the turf.
Hernández and Palacios, who landed awkwardly on his neck, stayed down for several minutes and their teammates engaged in a lot of pushing and shoving before order was restored. Captain Carlos Vela left in the 20th minute with what the team called a left quadriceps injury. LAFC’s frustration returned after the final whistle, with more pushing and shoving just outside the south penalty area. Although LAFC remains atop the MLS table — standings that won’t be affected by the Open Cup game — it has lost three of its last four while the three goals it allowed were the most it has given up this season.
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