LAFC look to continue run against visiting Montreal Impact

0
LAFC
FRISCO, TX — MAY 19: Los Angeles FC forward Carlos Vela (10) advances the ball during the game between FC Dallas and Los Angeles FC on May 19, 2019 at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, TX. (Photo by George Walker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images).

Los Angeles, California (May 24, 2019) — Three wins, three draws. That is the form over the last six matches that Los Angeles FC come into Friday with.

Head coach Bob Bradley, called the previous match strange, saying “You try hard to get something that feels like football going, and on a night like tonight it just was almost impossible.”

LAFC look to continue run against visiting Montreal Impact

The last match was the second of a back-back-back, against a fiery FC Dallas squad. The match was a predictable chippy affair, but lacked any sense of flow. A lot of that was down to the referee pausing play to issue warnings for each infraction. However, neither team found rhythm, thus leading to a stale 1-1 draw.

Up until now, things for the league leaders have been relatively going through the season with ease. They have provided a potent attack, their defense has improved immensely from last season and the chemistry amongst the team reflects that of a team having played together a near decade — not of one only in their second year of existence.

However, now things will get a bit more challenging. Tonight will be the last match LAFC will have at home until early July. Over that span, LAFC will not only have three road matches to contend with, but also the impending Gold Cup tournament. Several players are listed to leave the club for international duties.

Next on the Schedule: Montreal

The aforementioned home match will be against the Montreal Impact. Currently, the Impact are in a fight for top spot in the Eastern Conference. The Impact are one of the fews teams LAFC have yet to see more than once, with their last and only match against one another, was a thrilling 5-3 LAFC win in Montreal.

In what may be the last match at full strength before the Gold Cup tournament, LAFC will be hoping to tighten their grip of first place in the West, and continue their record-setting pace in 2019.

Piatti Returns

Montreal Impact midfielder, Ignacio Piatti, made his long-awaited return from injury in their last match against the New England Revolution. Piatti netted a hat-trick the last time these two teams faced off. His return will not only provide more scoring options, but will also give the Impact a bit more bite in defending the middle of the pitch. LAFC have a vastly improved defense compared to their last meeting. Montreal will need all the help they can get if they hope to score against this defense at LAFC’s home.

Fortress at home

As impressive as their evolution of play on the field has been, just as, if not more impressive, has been the growth in the stands. From day one, the atmosphere at The Banc, sitting in the heart of Los Angeles, was one to be feared. Just as the team has built chemistry, over the last year, the 3252 have followed suit.

Now a wall of unparalleled enthusiasm, with collective voices booming through any broadcast and a forecast of severe beer showers anytime a goal hits, these supporters have been the fuel for the players. It is tangible the home field advantage they provide and this year is no different.

LAFC have conceded a mere four goals at home, while netting 16 of their own. Any opponent entering The Banc knows they are in for an experience unlike any other. What’s worse, they know even if they achieve the titanic task of scoring one goal, it still may not be enough.

Mind of a Killer

I have previously raved over the mentality that permeates throughout the squad. The feeling that the only thing good enough is three points — even then it’s only means to what is hoped to be a trophy lifting end. However, the previous draw really provided insight into just how determined this team is.

The match itself, objectively speaking, was as much a credit to the opposing keeper having a great game, than it was LAFC missing shots. However, post match, many in LAFC felt disappointed.

LAFC want it all.

The trophy, the records, the individual awards, to be known as the league’s best. In addition, they aren’t afraid to say it, which makes them even scarier.

Prediction

As previously mentioned, this may be the last time the squad is at full strength. With a handful of players slated for Gold Cup preparation, LAFC will look to take advantage of the home field atmosphere. The Impact have a solid defense themselves, so LAFC may have another tough fight ahead. Expect LAFC to come out with the three points, in a 2-1 win.

 

Embed from Getty Images

LEAVE A REPLY

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.