Culver City Observer -

By Eric Lambkins II
Sports Reporter 

LAFC soccer is fit to be tied

 

Jevone Moore

LAFC star soccer player Carlos Vela, left, has scored goals in the last four games for the Los Angeles Football Club.

For the last few weeks, the Los Angeles Football Club has been all tied up. Last Saturday they played to a 2-2 tie against Vancouver and last Wednesday Minnesota tied LAFC in the last minute of overtime, 2-2. Against Vancouver Whitecaps LAFC fell behind 2-0 in the first half.

Vancouver jolted to a 2-0 lead after a Deiber Caicedo and Cristian Dajome tickled the net that pushed the Whitecaps ahead in the first half. Los Angeles struggled in the first half playing with pace and energy. "It didn't seem like we had energy," said LAFC goalkeeper Tomas Romero after the game. "It's hard to tell guys to put more energy into games after playing two games this week.

Tomas continues to say, "Bob just wants us to put more energy into the game but it's hard to do that. It's not as easy as it sounds. I think we focus on some of the good from this game and focus on the next one. Come in with a little more heart." Bob Bradley is the head coach of the LAFC.

The Whitecaps jumped to a 1-0 lead in the 25th minute when LAFC's right back, Kim Moon-Hwan, failed to clear a Vancouver cross in the box by Dajome. When the ball danced free from the Korean defender, it found the foot of Caicedo, who managed to sneak behind Romero for the tap-in. Dajome exerted his presence further in the 38th minute with a far-post header off a Cristian Gutierrez free-kick.

LAFC got a much-needed jolt when Carlos Vela scored in the 40th minute with a disputed goal. After a well-timed run, Vela received a beautiful pass off Eduard Atuesta's foot and punched the ball into the bottom-left corner of the net, beating Vancouver's goalkeeper, Thomas Haselcut, to trim the team's deficit in half. The goal marked Vela's third consecutive game with a score. However, it was questioned whether Vela was onside, and referee Kevin Stott went to VAR and confirmed the goal.

Los Angeles was able to equalize in fashion in the 75th minute. Jose Cifuentes scored his third goal of the month, and fifth of the year, when he made a superb strike when he punched home a Diego Palacios' cross for a first-time volley off the outside of his right foot and into the far post.

Bradley offered Cifuentes praise after the game."Cifu has been a bright spot," Bradley stated. "He started slowly. He didn't arrive in the best of shape. It took a while to get him in shape and confident. There were early games when he had opportunities to play important passes and he missed too often, but little by little he's come around and in this stretch he's been one of our best players."

LAFC almost managed to gift wrap the match for Vancouver in the 84th minute when Dajome booted in his would-be second goal but was disallowed after he was deemed offside.

The Black and Gold are usually reliable at home. Escaping with just 1-point against one of the table's worst teams, seemed to deflate the club and crowd.

Against Minnesota LAFC was dominate in every phase of the game except the score board. Los Angeles continued to struggle with connecting on cross passes and through balls throughout both matches. If they are to improve their position in the standings, they'll need to emphasize improving their touch.

Against Minnesota Vela scored a goal in his fourth straight game and former LAFC goalie, Tyler Miller is now the stopper for Minnesota.

LAFC battles second place Kansas City Wednesday at the Banc of California Stadium at 7:30 p.m. LAFC is currently in fifth place in the Major Soccer League standings.

Follow Eric on Twitter @elambsquared or IG @elamb5quared.

 

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