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MLS Rewind: Sounders, LAFC claim road wins, Union stay top in East, and more


Major League Soccer action on Saturday brought more late winners, plus an incredible first-time strike from Joao Paulo as the Seattle Sounders found their stride in league play.

Brian Schmetzer’s squad earned a first road win of 2022, defeating Minnesota United 2-1 at Allianz Field. Paulo’s magical strike paired with an own goal by Loons defender Brent Kallman helped the Sounders gain some needed confidence before this week’s Concacaf Champions League semifinal first leg vs. NYCFC.

LAFC extended its winning streak to three matches, outdueling Orlando City to earn a 4-2 road win. Four different players contributed goals for Steve Cherundolo’s side, with Ilie Sanchez and Kwadwo Opoku adding the finishes after a 2-2 first half scoreline.

Nashville SC claimed an important three points on the road at the Columbus Crew, with Alex Muyl playing the hero in a 1-0 victory. Gary Smith’s side snapped a three-match winless run in league play, moving them up to ninth place in the standings.

In the Eastern Conference, the Philadelphia Union kept rolling with a 2-0 win over Charlotte FC, with playmaking midfielder Daniel Gazdag scoring four a fourth-straight match. The Red Bulls profited from a late, bizarre own goal from the New England Revolution to claim three points at Gillette Stadium, while CF Montreal outlasted FC Cincinnati 4-3 at TQL Stadium.

Look back on the best goals and performances in this week’s MLS Rewind:

Fire 0, FC Dallas 0

Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

Man of the Match: Miguel Navarro contributed to attack and defense for the Fire, generating a key pass and winning two tackles at right back. Both teams missed chances and could not find much production in the midfield.

Moment of the Match: FC Dallas missed a golden opportunity in the 88th minute, when Nanu received a pass in the box. Nanu took an outstanding first touch to put him 1-on-1 with Gaga Slonina, but could have done much better with the shot, which went straight into Slonina’s hands.

Match to Forget: Fire striker Kacper Przybylko took three shots, but couldn’t find the back of the net in this match. Przybylko struggled to make the most of few chances generated by the Fire’s midfield.

FC Cincinnati 3, CF Montreal 4

(Brandon Vazquez 12′, Alistair Johnston (OG) 20′, Luciano Acosta (pen) 61′) – (Djordje Mihailovic 17′, 41′, Kei Kamara 45+1′, Joaquin Torres 67′)

Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports

Man of the Match: It is hard to argue with Djordje Mihailovic’s brace. Both goals were crucial responses to bring Montreal level in the first half.

Moment of the Match: Joaquín Torres’ game-winner settled the back-and-forth contest.

Match to Forget: Neither goalkeeper had a great showing, but Alec Kann could have done more on three of his four concessions. Look no further than the 45th minute when he was nutmegged by Kei Kamara after barreling towards him.

Toronto FC 2, NYCFC 1

Jesus Jimenez 31’, Thiago Martins OG 43’) – (Heber 90+1)

Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

Man of the Match: Johnson Osorio’s stellar season continued with the Canadian veteran registering his first assist. Osorio also completed 98% of his passes and completed the most dribbles in the match (4).

Moment of the Match: Thiago Martins has watched from the sidelines for most of the season for NYCFC and the Brazilian conceded an own goal which doubled TFC’s first-half lead.

Match to Forget: Martins not only conceded an own goal but was caught out of position on several occasions in the defeat.

Crew 0, Nashville SC 1

(Alex Muyl 28’)

Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

Man of the Match: Joe Willis made four saves for Nashville SC, helping Gary Smith’s side earn a first win since Opening Day.

Moment of the Match: Alex Muyl isn’t known for his heading abilities, but the veteran forward delivered the lone goal of the match after a great cross from Taylor Washington.

Match to Forget: Pedro Santos was lively at left back, but his unfortunate slip on Washington’s cross allowed Muyl to be wide open to head home the winning goal in the first half.

Union 2, Charlotte FC 0

(Julian Carranza 4′, Daniel Gazdag 46′)

Kyle Ross – USA Today Sports

Man of the Match: Daniel Gazdag extended his goal scoring streak to four games for the Union and was a creative force for the entire match.

Moment of the Match: Gazdag’s goal truly iced the win for the Union and continued a hot run of form for the midfielder. Gazdag pounced on an errant pass from Charlotte goalkeeper Kristijan Kahlina and finished into an empty net.

Match to Forget: Guzman Corujo’s error led to one of the Union’s two goals on the night and ultimately the centerback struggled to deal with Carranza, Sergio Santos, and the rest of the Union attack.

D.C. United 0, Atlanta United 1

(Marcelino Moreno 90+4’)

Mitchell Layton-USA TODAY Sports

Man of the Match: Marcelino Moreno played the hero for Atlanta United, saving his first goal of 2022 for the final moments of the Five Stripes win. Moreno’s back-post header trickled into the opposite lower corner to give Atlanta the win.

Moment of the Match: Moreno sent the traveling Five Stripes fans home happy, heading home a cross from Brooks Lennon past Bill Hamid in the fourth minute of second-half stoppage time.

Match to Forget: Nigel Robertha played the full 90 minutes for D.C. United, but the striker was ineffective, losing 13 duels and only registering one shot.

Revolution 0, Red Bulls 1

(Matt Polster (OG) 90+1′)

Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

Man of the Match: Red Bulls goalkeeper Carlos Coronel made five saves as the Red Bulls capitalized on a profligate Revs attack. The Revolution kept 66% of possession and played with a man advantage since Frankie Amaya’s red card in the 73rd minute.

Moment of the Match: Andrew Farrell and Matt Polster combined for an awful end to the match for the Revs. Farrell’s clearance went straight into Polster and in the net in the first minute of second-half stoppage time.

Match to Forget: Andrew Farrell added another rough game to a difficult start to the year at centerback. Farrell was incredibly unlucky, however, when his clearance knocked off the leg of Matt Polster to score a stoppage-time own goal.

Earthquakes 2, Austin FC 2

(Jeremy Ebobisse 70’, Cade Cowell 72’) – (Maxi Urruti 11’, Sebastian Driussi 52’)

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Man of the Match: Sebastian Driussi not only scored for Austin FC, but also won six of his 12 duels and continued to show why he has been one of the best players for Josh Wolff’s side in 2022.

Moment of the Match: Cade Cowell’s equalizer helped the host Earthquakes fight back to claim one point. It capped off a two-goal-in-two-minute period for the Western Conference club.

Match to Forget: Nick Lima’s foul in the 69th minute led to the first Quakes goal and truly swung momentum into his former club’s favor.

Orlando City 2, LAFC 4

(Alexandre Pato 36’, Joao Moutinho 45’) – (Brian Rodriguez 24’, Jesus Murillo 38’, Ilie Sanchez 51’, Kwadwo Opoku 90+3’)

Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Man of the Match: Jesus Murillo delivered a goal and assist for LAFC and also helped the visitors silence Orlando City in the second half.

Moment of the Match: Ilie Sanchez’s goal in the 51st minute ended up being the winner from Exploria Stadium and swung momentum back in LAFC’s favor for good.

Match to Forget: Orlando City right back Ruan committed an error that led to one of LAFC’s goals. Ruan was subbed off in the 72nd minute.

Minnesota United 1, Sounders 2

Emanuel Reynoso (pen) 82′) – (Joao Paulo 38′, Brent Kallman (OG) 49′)

Matt Blewett-USA TODAY Sports

Man of the Match: Joao Paulo mastered the midfield for Seattle in this match. Not only did he score an excellent goal, he also contributed two key passes, took three shots and led the Sounders in touches.

Moment of the Match: Joao Paulo’s first-time shot smacked the top right corner of the net in the 38th minute. The strike was one of the best goals in MLS this week and open scoring spectacularly.

Match to Forget: Minnesota United forward Luis Amarilla had four shots, but couldn’t direct any on goal. The Paraguayan striker scored in the Loons’ last two matches, but couldn’t find the space and time to do so in this match.

Whitecaps 1, Sporting Kansas City 0

(Ryan Raposo 73′)

Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports

Man of the Match: Ryan Raposo led the Whitecaps’ attack, combining well with Lucas Cavallini. He started the play on his 73rd-minute goal and added another key pass earlier in the match.

Moment of the Match: Ryan Raposo broke the deadlock in the 73rd minute, slipping in behind Graham Zusi and stabbing home the game’s only goal past Sporting KC goalkeeper Tim Melia.

Match to Forget: Khiry Shelton could not provide much in the attack for Sporting KC. He was subbed off in the 80th minute for Nikola Vujnovic, a recent signing who started the past two matches.

Rapids 1, Real Salt Lake 1

(Lalas Abubakar 56′) – (Pablo Ruiz 45′)

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Man of the Match: Andrew Brody turned in a mistake-free 90 minutes at right back for Real Salt Lake. Brody stepped in for Aaron Herrera, who remains injured, and fended off 16 shots from the Rapids.

Moment of the Match: The Rapids equalized early in the second half, when Lalas Abubakar connected at the far post with a cross from Michael Barrios.

Match to Forget: The Rapids put in a rather dominant home performance, but Keegan Rosenberry’s tackle just before halftime drew a penalty and allowed RSL’s Pablo Ruiz to score. Rosenberry hacked down Justin Meram as Meram dribbled into the box.

Inter Miami 1, Dynamo 3

(Gonzalo Higuain 66’) – (Darwin Quintero 49’, Fafa Picault 57’, 90+3’)

Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Man of the Match: Fafa Picault not only doubled Houston’s lead in the second half but iced the road win with his second goal of the night. It was Picault’s first two goals of 2022.

Moment of the Match: Inter Miami was pushing for an equalizer but eventually suffered its latest defeat as Picault’s stoppage-time finish condemned Phil Neville’s side to a fourth loss out of five matches.

Match to Forget: Robert Taylor conceded the penalty kick in the second half and failed to register either of his two shots on goal.

Galaxy 3, Timbers 1

(Chicharito 9′,59′ , Bill Tuiloma 16′ OG) – (Bill Tuiloma 51′)

Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

Man of the Match: Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez scored his first brace of the season for the Galaxy, and helped the five-time MLS Cup Champions snap their two-game losing streak ahead of a pivotal match-up against LAFC on April 9.

Moment of the Match: On the edge of halftime, Timbers right-back Pablo Bonilla received a harsh red card for a push to the chest of Rayan Raveloson after play had already been blown dead and the Timbers were forced into playing down a man coming out of halftime. Midfielder Mark Delgado of the Galaxy ended up also receiving a red card for his second yellow in the 61st minute and forcing each team to play with 10 men, but the red card to Bonilla was too much for the Timbers to overcome.

Match to Forget: Tasked with stepping in for the suspended Jose VanRankin, the aforementioned Pablo Bonilla had a nightmare performance at right-back during his 45 minutes on the field for the Timbers. The red card summed up an overall tough day for the Portland defense that was already short in depth with center-back Zac McGraw out with an illness.

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