Los Angeles Football Club got a nice bounce-back win after being held scoreless at home last weekend. Here are the main things that we took away from the 3-0 victory over Columbus Crew SC on Saturday.
Mark- Anthony Kaye was heavily involved early on
LAFC started off the game on the front foot, and they were pushing hard for a goal. One player in particular who was heavily involved was Mark-Anthony Kaye. As he has often this year, Kaye was bossing it in the midfield, and he had a few chances to open the scoring early on. He had a shot deflect out for a corner, after a nice cross from Carlos Vela. He had an even better chance a few mins later, with a hard low shot that saved by Crew ‘keeper Joe Bendik. Kaye would eventually open the scoring right before halftime, after being played through by Latif Blessing, hit a soft ball that dribbled past Bendik into the net. Was it a shot or a pass? It’s unclear, but they all count the same when they go in. Kaye played really well in midfield today, and his growth from a good season last year is very encouraging.
Things got chippy early on in the game
Speaking of Kaye, he was heavily involved in a tense period during the game, starting around the 20th minute or so. He tried to block a drop kick by Bendik, and Bendik did not appreciate that, so he shoved Kaye to the ground. Pushing and shoving between the teams insued, but nothing more than that came of it. A few minutes later, Vela was leveled by a tackle near the top of the box, and Steven Beitashour took out a Crew defender as the ball went out wide. Vela had already been fouled so LAFC got the free kick, but Columbus was not happy about Beitashour’s challenge. On an attack the other way, Walker Zimmerman got a yellow card for impeding a Columbus forward. This game could have gone off the rails at that point, but thankfully this was more of a blip than a trend during this game.
LAFC push hard for a winner in the second half
Despite being on the road, LAFC were able to impose themselves well on this game in both halves. Like the beginning of the game, the beginning of the second half saw LAFC make a concerted effort to score and kill off the game. They kept possession and pressed high to keep Columbus bottled up. Columbus was able to get forward at times and get chances on goal, but LAFC kept pushing for another goal that would kill the game off.
LAFC get the insurance goal late...with a bit of luck
LAFC did eventually find those insurance goals, but they came right at the end of the game. In the 88th minute a ball came in near the top of the Columbus box, and Jonathan Mensah headed the ball toward goal, intending to head it right to Joe Bendik. Unfortunately for him, Bendik had come out for the ball as well, and Mensah’s header went past him and toward the net. The errant header played Josh Perez through with the goal at his mercy. Unfortunately Perez rushed his shot, and he hit the crossbar. Fortunately for LAFC, the rebound bounced right to Adama Diomande, who made sure to put the ball in the net and finish the game off. And if there was any doubt of the outcome, that was put to rest two minutes later, when Vela scored another left-footed stunner into the corner of the net. 3-0 was a harsh scoreline on Columbus, but LAFC will certainly take the extra cushion of goals to secure the win.
LAFC continue their impressive road form
It’s always nice to bounce back from a game that you feel like you should have won. It’s even better to do so by getting another win on the road. Since they have gotten to the league LAFC have had impressive road form. I talked about last week how LAFC had good chances but the ball just did not go in. Well this time it did, and they had some good fortune with that, both with Kaye’s opening goal and Dio’s goal. If you play well, the ball tends to bounce your way more often than that. It certainly did this time for LAFC.
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