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New faces looked sharp in LAFC’s friendly draw vs. Borussia Dortmund

We got to see almost every player in the squad, including some new faces, and there were some positives to take away.

Borussia Dortmund v Los Angeles FC Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

LAFC’s friendly against Borussia Dortmund on Tuesday night turned out to be what many expected: an match with no real consequence, but one that was pretty fun to watch. Both sides actually started with pretty strong lineups: LAFC started Carlos Vela, Laurent Ciman, Diego Rossi, Benny Feilhaber, and others, while Dortmund had Christian Pulisic, Mario Gotze, and Andre Schurrle in from the start. Some of the most interesting points of the match, however, were the substitutes that came on.

Since it was a friendly, LAFC and Dortmund were allowed more than the standard three subs. Bob Bradley evidently said, “thank you very much,“ and used nine of those subs.

In those substitutions, as well as the starting lineup, we got to see a handful of players we had never seen before in LAFC’s shades of black and gold. Adama Diomande made his debut for LAFC, while Aaron Kovar, Nicolas Czornomaz, James Murray, Charlie Lyon, and Shaft Brewer also saw the pitch as new faces.

Borussia Dortmund v Los Angeles FC
James Murphy (left) makes his debut for LAFC.
Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

For a group of players who had not been on the pitch together, at least in a competitive match, they seemed to work pretty well together. Kovar, going forward with Latif Blessing and Lee Nguyen, looked solid (albeit unpolished, but we’re not going to be picky about a friendly). He was able to find a lot of open space and was constantly looking to run forward and use what the other two created, which is how he got his first goal for LAFC, and the first goal of the game.

Diomande is another player worth highlighting. Although he only played a little over half an hour, he looked sharp up front. He looked for open pockets and was good in holding up play, and clearly had it in his mind to pass as well as shoot. He actually had a great chance in the box, but seemed to be caught in between two minds of whether to go for it or to lay it off. His debut, although short, was pretty promising.

Charlie Lyon in goal was also impressive against Dortmund, making a couple excellent saves in the box. Hopefully, he is not a player that LAFC will need to call on, because that means Tyler Miller went down, but he had a great game, and I would not put the Dortmund goal on him.

Overall, the new faces that we saw in LAFC’s match against Dortmund worked pretty well together, not just with one another but with the veterans and established players on the squad. Bob Bradley used this opportunity to give everyone a run out there, and it worked out in his favor: he just got a chance, even if it was just a friendly, to see all these guys out there. This can only serve as a positive, considering some of these guys are going to get more playing time as we approach the World Cup.

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