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MLS- Vancouver Whitecaps

Laba's brace edges Whitecaps over Galaxy for first season victory

For all the attacking options at the Vancouver Whitecaps’ disposal on Saturday night, it was an unlikely source that produced the game-clinching goals.

Matias Laba had only scored two goals in more than four years in Major League Soccer, but he scored two goals 20 minutes apart to lead a second-half surge as the Whitecaps rallied from a 2-1 halftime deficit to post a 4-2 victory over the LA Galaxy at BC Place.

Early on, the match was all Galaxy, as Frenchman Romain Alessandrini was too much for Vancouver’s back four to contain. He scored a brace within the span of four minutes. to give the Galaxy a halftime lead.

The second half would play a Canadian tune as Montero’s entry into the match helped spark the Whitecaps attack and put the Galaxy defense on its heels.

The breakthrough came in the 66th minute when Techera collected an Alphonso Davies pass and cut to his right before unleashing a curling shot that forced a save from Clement Diop. The rebound fell to Montero, who made no mistake from six yards out.

Just a minute later, Laba gave the Whitecaps the lead for good, collecting a Montero pass at the top of the penalty area and blasting home his first goal since 2015.

Laba didn’t have to wait long for his next goal, adding his second of the night in the 87th minute when he stripped Alessandrini and sparked a quick counterattack. Montero attempted a long-range shot that Diop saved, but Laba had continued his run and pounced on the rebound to make the final score 4-2.

The LA Galaxy will look to rebound by taking on another Canadian team, the Montreal Impact, on Friday. The Whitecaps will turn their attention to Wednesday’s CONCACAF Champions League semifinal second leg at home against Mexican power Tigres. The Whitecaps suffered a 2-0 loss to Tigres in the first leg.

MAN OF THE MATCH

The Argentinian Matias Laba had the night of his life in a Whitecaps uniform, scoring twice the amount of goals he had scored in his three years with the Canadian side.

MOMENT OF THE MATCH

Matias Laba’s first goal, a blast from 20 yards out, gave the Whitecaps the lead for good and gave the home team control it never relinquished.

MATCH TO FORGET

Galaxy goalkeeper Clement Diop had a shocker, getting caught outside of the penalty area on the first Whitecaps goal, and giving up rebounds that led to two other Whitecaps goals.

5 comments
  • Gary Page

    I don’t know if the Galaxy’s problems were due to Steres, Van Damme, or someone else, but Vancouver seemed to have no trouble going right through the middle of the Galaxy back line. And that field looked like a joke. It looked like old, used outdoor carpet with a lot of worn spots. The league should force them to put in some new turf or maybe real grass.

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  • JAVIER

    Is it me or does it seem the central midfield pairing of Jermaine Jones and Joao Pedro is not working out? For long stretches of this game I couldn’t tell who was supposed to be in the central midfield for the Galaxy. And that keeper has to go back to Los Dos. Why isn’t Brian Rowe playing? I think he’s a better keeper. I like Dos Santos I think he’s good for the Galaxy but he wasn’t getting service. The Galaxy at times seemed to generate some offense but something besides the defense is missing in this team. If the Galaxy keep playing like this I can’t see them making the playoffs. Who put this team together management or Curt Onalfo? I know the season is just starting and there were a lot of injuries earlier but the Galaxy in my opinion look really bad this year.

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    • Gary Page

      I was skeptical of the wisdom of hiring Onalfo, so *I may be biased. However, I don’t think he has the team well organized and I find some of his personnel decisions to be unwise.

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  • Quit Whining About Soccer in the US

    I don’t see how this LA team does anything, even with players recovering from injuries. They can’t be that good without changes.

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  • Josh

    Joao Pedro has looked awful every time I’ve had a chance to watch the Galaxy. Is Rowe injured? If not, I have to guess that was the last we’ll see of the Diop experiment for now. He has a lot of promise, but clearly unprepared for the consequences of risk-taking at this level. Galaxy have a lot of work to do. The problem is how do you get a bunch of lofty vets (Van Damme, Dos Santos, Jones, Alessandrini, Cole, etc…) to listen to an up-jumped third division manager?

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