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LAFC 2022 Player Postmortem: Danny Musovski

Certainly not a dime a dozen player.

Los Angeles Football Club v LA Galaxy Photo by Dave Bernal/ISI Photos/Getty Images

Danny Musovski returned for his third season with LAFC in 2022, but he didn’t see it out with the club as they reached new heights.

Entering the season as a 26-year-old, he has been one of the best stories on the LAFC squad — never really getting a chance with the San Jose Earthquakes out of UNLV, he earned a spot in preseason with LAFC and signed for the 2020 season. And then he scored! In a league where domestic forwards almost never get the time of day, Musovski’s ability to step in from time to time and score some key goals is valuable.

That continued while he was with the black-and-gold in 2022. Musovski played fewer minutes than ever this year for LAFC, but kept his goals+assists number remarkably consistent year to year.

Here are Musovski’s stats with LAFC in 2022:

Danny Musovski LAFC 2022 Statistics

2022 Games Played Games Started Minutes Goals Assists Shots SOG Yellow Cards Red Cards
2022 Games Played Games Started Minutes Goals Assists Shots SOG Yellow Cards Red Cards
Regular Season 16 6 507 2 1 13 6 2 0
U.S. Open Cup 3 3 225 2 1 6 4 1 0
Playoffs 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 19 9 732 4 2 19 10 3 0

Musovski’s highlight of the season came against FC Cincinnati, a game where the Ohio side really had the better of play overall on the day, but he came off the bench and capped off a comeback with the winning goal.

In addition, Musovski did double duty with his hometown-ish team, Las Vegas Lights, notching one assist in three appearances in the USL Championship this year.

Musovski is a player every MLS team needs, a forward who doesn’t see a ton of time, but can both start and come off the bench occasionally and score when he does play. This is easier said that done, honestly. Given the salary constraints on MLS rosters, most teams struggle to both have top-end scorers and bench scorers. That LAFC successfully had both and got fairly consistent production from a striker who was most of the time at best the team’s sixth scoring option is pretty impressive.

Of course, the Moose’s tenure with LAFC came to a close this year, as he was traded to Real Salt Lake in early August in exchange for $250,000 in allocation money. It appeared that RSL, desperate for healthy strikers, really wanted a value option, and LAFC needed to clear some squad spots and cap room to be roster compliant during their summer spending spree. On balance, would you rather have Musovski or, say, Cristian Tello? On paper, the choice is probably pretty obvious, although frankly, Musovski was much more productive for LAFC.

Still, it appeared to be a needs must situation, and even if Musovski had not been traded, he would have likely slipped all the way out of the rotation by the end of the season, with Denis Bouanga, Gareth Bale and Tello joining up. So in some ways, this was a move for LAFC to try and get Musovski more playing time, although he was limited by injury after making the move and barely played after arriving in Utah.

That’s unfortunate, but I remain a fan of Danny Musovski. Put simply, the odds are stacked against American non-international forwards, he had zero hype, and he just grinded his way into the reckoning. He’s scored memorable winning goals, he started in the freaking Concacaf Champions League final for LAFC, don’t forget. He’s an easy player to root for, and even though his time with LAFC is done, I’m wishing him the best moving forward.

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