LOS ANGELES, Calif. (August 19, 2018) – In their first ever meeting in league play, Los Angeles FC win against the Colorado Rapids. Thanks to second-half goals from Lee Nguyen and Diego Rossi, LAFC are back, taking six points from their two home games this week.
Los Angeles FC win first meeting with Colorado Rapids 2-0
The first half had a very good pace to it. LAFC looked to attack with numbers, but the Rapids did well to pressure the man on the ball and stay organized in the defensive third. Colorado looked to attack on the counter but Steven Beitashour was alert to Edgar Castillo and Laurent Ciman was stout up the middle.
Both sides dealt with injury scares in the first half. Ciman collided with goalkeeper Tyler Miller on a free kick. He appeared to injure his right elbow but was able to continue. Sam Nicholson injured his back and was unable to continue. Nikki Jackson subbed in for him in the 28th minute.
The best chances for both teams came just minutes apart. In the 36th minute, Carlos Vela fired a hard shot inside the box that forced Tim Howard to parry away. Minutes later, Ciman made a great tackle on Jack McBean from just outside the box on a 2-on-1.
The half ended scoreless with controversy. In stoppage time, Benny Feilhaber tried to collect a cross in the box and the ball ultimately deflected off Dann Wilson’s arm and out of harm’s way. No handball was called and head official Nima Saghafi did not look at the play.
LAFC opened the scoring just four minutes into the second half. Lee Nguyen ran onto the ball in the box, spun around to create a shooting angle and chipped Howard to make it 1-0. LAFC continued to attack with numbers.
The visitors had several good chances in the final 10 minutes. Jack McBean had several looks at goal but shot straight at Miller. In the 75th minute, Jackson had a great opportunity in the box, but Danilo Silva tackled the ball away.
Off a header chance from McBean, LAFC scored on the break. Adama Diomande found Diego Rossi who was able to speed by the Rapids and beat Howard across goal in the 80th minute. The game ended 2-0.
Rapids neutralized: Colorado have had two main paths in the attack recently: To the left to Edgar Castillo and up the middle in the new 4-4-2 diamond. With Vela lined up against Castillo, the outside back was kept in check. Nicholson’s injury left the Rapids with two traditional No. 9s up top, limiting the build-up play.
LAFC is back: After a rough few games, LAFC won six points from two home games this week against Western Conference opposition. Vela looks to be back at his peak. Diomande returned from injury and got an assist. Nguyen and Rossi both scored tonight.
Chances taken, chances missed: The chances were fairly even in this match despite the scoreline. LAFC had more shots, 15-11, but both had five on goal. Jackson and McBean both had several good looks but couldn’t finish. On the other side, LAFC’s stars made their chances count to get the win.