Greatest goalscoring race in MLS history reaches stretch run
The greatest race for the MLS Golden Boot is coming down the home stretch, as Carlos Vela, Zlatan Ibrahimović and Josef Martínez are all chasing not only the title of the league’s top goalscorer – but also the greatest single season in Major League Soccer history.
With three weeks still to play in the MLS regular season, the trio is separated by just five goals – and each has already chipped in with one of the 10 best goalscoring seasons in league history.
With LAFC’s Vela on 28 goals, following closely by the LA Galaxy’s Ibrahimović at 26, and Atlanta United’s Martínez with 24, it’s the sixth time in MLS history there has been a trio of 20-plus goalscorers in a single season – but the first time all three are above the 24-goal mark. The 78 total goals from the three is by far the most from a goalscoring trio in the same season in league annals.
All three are also chasing history in their goalscoring rate. No player who has scored 20 or more goals in a season has ever scored at better than a goal per game – and both Vela (28 goals in 27 games, 1.037 goals/game) and Ibrahimović (26 goals in 25 games, 1.040 goals/game) are ahead of that standard.
Three times in league history where there has been a trio of 20-plus goalscorers the race for the MLS Golden Boot has come down to the wire. The most dramatic came in 2013, when Camilo Sanvezzo of Vancouver netted a hat trick on the final day to end the year with 22 goals, surpassing both Mike Magee and Marco Di Vaio. In 2015, Sebastian Giovinco and Kei Kamara finished the year tied for goals, each ending the year with 22.
MOST GOALS, SINGLE SEASON
Heading into the final three weeks, Vela and Ibrahimović each have four games still to play, while Martínez has five.
But Martínez would appear to have a big advantage against the teams he’ll be facing – he has 14 goals in 14 appearances against the opponents ahead. He has scored four goals in two games vs. San Jose (who Atlanta United face Sept. 21), and four goals in five games vs. New England (Oct. 6). Ibrahimović has scored seven goals in nine games against the Galaxy’s opponents the rest of the way, including three goals vs. both Real Salt Lake (Sept. 25) and Vancouver (Sept. 29), while Vela has four goals against LAFC’s six remaining foes, including a pair of goals in lone meetings vs. both Toronto FC (Sept. 21) and the Houston Dynamo (Sept. 25).
2019 MLS GOLDEN BOOT RACE
DON’T BE LATE: CRUZ’S EARLY HEROICS EQUAL 23-YEAR-OLD FEAT
When Allan Cruz gave FC Cincinnati the lead after just 28 seconds of their match vs. the Montréal Impact at Stade Saputo last Saturday evening, he wrote his name into MLS lore.
Cruz became just the second player in Major League Soccer history to score two goals in the opening minute of games in the same season – and the first to do it in 23 seasons. The only player to perform the feat was Steve Rammel, who netted a pair of first-minute goals for D.C. United in the league’s inaugural season of 1996.
MULTIPLE FIRST-MINUTE GOALS, SINGLE SEASON
By the end of the night, FC Cincinnati had made Cruz’s early heroics stand up. In the 5,831 league games played in MLS history, it was just the seventh time a team had made a first-minute goal stand up as the only goal of a game – and Cruz’s goal matched the earliest ever scored in a 1-0 contest, joining Saer Sene’s tally for the New England Revolution after 28 seconds in a win vs. the Portland Timbers on March 24, 2012.
FIRST-MINUTE GOALS IN 1-0 GAMES (ALL-TIME)
GALAXY IN HISTORIC NIGHT WITH SEVEN-GOAL OUTBURST
The LA Galaxy added yet another goal fest to their list of achievements, after their 7-2 win vs. Sporting Kansas City at Dignity Health Sports Park last Sunday evening.
The offensive outburst marked the eighth time in MLS history where a team has scored seven or more goals in a game. The Galaxy have done it on three occasions (no other team has done it more than once), holding the all-time single-game record set in an 8-1 win vs. Dallas in 1998.
It also marked the third time this season where a team has netted seven goals in a game – the most in a single year in MLS history. The only other season where it happened even twice was in 1998, where the Galaxy did it 29 days apart, including their record performance.
The Galaxy’s latest achievement also rewrote some league records. For the first time ever, a team conceded the opening goal, then went on to score seven goals in a game, after Sporting KC took the lead after 24 minutes.
The Galaxy then netted their opening goal through Zlatan Ibrahimović in the 32nd minute, and he finished off his third MLS hat trick in the 85th minute. The 53-minute span between the seven goals marked the fastest in MLS history, surpassing the 69 minutes it took Minnesota United FC to score seven goals in a win vs. FC Cincinnati on June 29 this year. The Galaxy scored seven uninterrupted goals, the most of any game where both teams scored.
MOST GOALS, ONE TEAM (ONE GAME)
LAFC HAS CHANCE FOR EARLIEST SUPPORTERS’ SHIELD CLINCH
The Los Angeles Football Club will head into the weekend again with a chance to claim the Supporters’ Shield, emblematic of the best overall record in MLS and also gain the top overall seed in the Audi 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs.
If LAFC can claim the honor, which will certainly require a victory vs. Toronto FC at Banc of California Stadium on Saturday evening, it will equal the earliest a team has won the Supporters’ Shield in MLS history. Two teams – the Tampa Bay Mutiny in 1996, and the LA Galaxy in 1998 – each claimed the league’s best overall record will three games still to play.
LAFC earlier this year clinched its berth in the Audi 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs after just 25 games, with nine games still to be played – the fastest of any team since the regular-season schedule length was expanded to 34 games beginning with the 2011 season.
LAFC is also within range of having the single most dominant season in MLS season. The largest margin of victory for a Supporters’ Shield winner came in 2017, when Toronto FC finished 12 points ahead of Atlanta United. LAFC enter Week 29 at seven points ahead of Eastern Conference leaders New York City FC, with four games still to be played.
LARGEST MARGIN OF VICTORY, SUPPORTERS’ SHIELD WINNERS
MLS WEEK 29 – LOOK AHEAD
FC CINCINNATI vs. ATLANTA UNITED
Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2019 (Week 29, MLS Game #364)
Nippert Stadium, Cincinnati, Ohio
7:30 p.m. ET (WSTR – Star 64; FS-South)
REFEREE: Marcos de Oliveira. AR1 (bench): Jeffrey Greeson; AR2 (opposite): Benjamin Hall-Wolpenhein; 4th: Chris Penso; VAR: Hilario Grajeda; AVAR: Cory Richardson
MLS Career: 165 games; FC/gm: 23.7; Y/gm: 3.8; R: 49; pens: 62
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: ATLUTD 0 wins, 1 goal … FCC 0 wins, 1 goal… Ties 1
AT CINCINNATI: First meeting.
- FC Cincinnati put an end to a four-game losing run, winning for the first time since July 13, defeating the Montréal Impact by the game’s only goal at Stade Saputo on Saturday evening. Allan Cruz netted the lone goal after just 28 seconds – it equaled the longest a team made a 1-0 lead stand up for a win in MLS history.
- Atlanta United suffered a second consecutive 3-1 defeat, but still clinched their berth in the Audi 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs, falling to Columbus Crew SC at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Saturday evening.
- Josef Martínez netted his 24th goal of the season for ATLUTD, extending his MLS goalscoring streak record to 14 consecutive league matches.
- The teams are meeting for the second time this season, and the second time in their histories. Josef Martínez gave Atlanta United the lead after five minutes, but Roland Lamah netted the equalizer four minutes from time, leaving the teams in a 1-1 draw on March 10 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
FCC: Allan Cruz became the second player in MLS history to score two goals in the opening minute in the same season – the first since Steve Rammel did it for D.C. United in 1996. … Przemyslaw Tyton was credited with one save in recording his first MLS shutout, in his 11th appearance.
ATLUTD: Pity Martínez recorded his eighth assist of the season, his last coming on Aug. 11. … Emerson Hyndman collected his second MLS assist, making his 10th league appearance.
PORTLAND TIMBERS vs. NEW YORK RED BULLS
Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2019 (Week 29, MLS Game #365)
Providence Park, Portland, Ore.
7:30 p.m. PT (KPDX; MSG)
REFEREE: Alan Kelly. AR1 (bench): Eric Weisbrod; AR2 (opposite): Chris Wattam; 4th: Joseph Dickerson; VAR: Edvin Jurisevic; AVAR: Thomas Supple
MLS Career: 13 games; FC/gm: 22.9; Y/gm: 4.0; R: 2; pens: 1
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Timbers 2 wins, 12 goals … Red Bulls 4 wins, 18 goals … Ties 3
AT PORTLAND: Timbers 1 win, 8 goals … Red Bulls 1 win, 8 goals … Ties 2
- The Timbers saw their two-game winning run come to an end, falling by the game’s only goal in a loss to D.C. United at Providence Park on Sunday afternoon.
- The Red Bulls opened their two-game Pacific Northwest swing with a third consecutive loss, falling 4-2 to Seattle Sounders FC at CenturyLink Field. Kaku netted his fifth goal of the season, and Aaron Long scored his second.
- The Red Bulls won the lone meeting between the teams last season, a 4-0 victory on March 10 at Red Bull Arena. It was the Red Bulls’ first home win in the series since 2012; the Timbers had come away with a win and a draw on their previous two trips to Harrison, N.J.
- The Timbers won the last meeting between the teams at Providence Park, a 2-0 victory on Aug. 18, 2017, their only home win in four meetings in Portland.
TIMBERS: The Red Bulls match is the eighth of a 10-game home stretch for the Timbers, where they’ve gone 4-3-0.
RED BULLS: Daniel Royer collected his eighth assist of the season, now the Red Bulls team leader for 2019. … Michael Murillo recorded his sixth assist of the season, his last coming June 1. … Marc Rzatkowski gained his seventh assist of the season; his two goals and seven assists match his total from his MLS campaign a year ago. … Bradley Wright-Phillips was credited with his third assist of the year.
SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC vs. FC DALLAS
Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2019 (Week 29, MLS Game #366)
CenturyLink Field, Seattle, Wash.
7:30 p.m. PT (JOEtv / YouTube TV [SEA]; FCDTV)
REFEREE: Drew Fischer. AR1 (bench): Gianni Facchini; AR2 (opposite): Gjovalin Bori; 4th: Mark Allatin; VAR: Ricardo Salazar; AVAR: Jeremy Hanson
MLS Career: 13 games; FC/gm: 22.9; Y/gm: 4.0; R: 2; pens: 1
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Sounders FC 12 wins, 42 goals … FC Dallas 7 wins, 28 goals … Ties 6
AT SEATTLE: Sounders FC 9 wins, 29 goals … FC Dallas 1 win, 8 goals … Ties 1
- Sounders FC won a second consecutive game scoring four goals, defeating the New York Red Bulls 4-2 at CenturyLink Field on Sunday afternoon. Nicolás Lodeiro scored a pair of goals, his fourth multiple-goal game in his MLS career.
- FC Dallas saw their two-game winning run come to an end, falling 4-0 to the Chicago Fire at SeatGeek Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
- The teams are meeting for the second time this season. FC Dallas benefited from a pair of own goals five minutes apart late in the first half, taking a 2-1 win on June 1 at Toyota Stadium.
- FC Dallas have a seven-game home undefeated streak in league play vs. Sounders FC, with five wins, and a nine-game home undefeated streak in the series in all competitions. Sounders FC last won in Frisco, Texas, on April 12, 2014.
- Sounders FC have won the past eight league meetings between the teams in Seattle, and nine of the 11 meetings there all-time, after their 2-1 win in the second meeting between the teams last year on Aug. 12. The only FCD win at CenturyLink Field came in 2011, a 1-0 victory on May 25.
- Over the past four seasons, Sounders FC have outscored FC Dallas 14-1 in four regular season meetings at CenturyLink Field. The FCD goal there last year ended a 460-minute goalless drought over all competitions in Seattle, including the 2016 Western Conference Semifinals, which marked a third consecutive year the teams met in the MLS Cup Playoffs.
SOUNDERS FC: Jordan Morris scored a goal, his ninth of the season, and added an assist, his seventh. It was the second consecutive appearance where Morris has had a goal and an assist, the fourth time in his MLS league career; he has assists now in his last three games. … Cristian Roldan recorded two assists, the first multiple-assist game of his MLS career; Roldan has a goal and/or an assist in each of his last three games, with three goals and two assists. … Saad Abdul-Salaam collected his first assist of the season.
FCD: According to Opta, FC Dallas has gotten 28 points against clubs in the top half of the table this season (7W-5L-4D). Only other team has more than 22 points against top half teams (LAFC – 31). FC Dallas come into the Portland tied for seventh place in the Western Conference with 43 points.
ATLANTA UNITED vs. SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES
Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019 (Week 29, MLS Game #367)
Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta, Ga.
3:30 p.m. ET (Univision / TUDN)
REFEREE: Chris Penso. AR1 (bench): Jeremy Hanson; AR2 (opposite): Kathryn Nesbitt; 4th: Greg Dopka; VAR: Ricardo Salazar; AVAR: Jozef Batko
MLS Career: 166 games; FC/gm: 23.7; Y/gm: 3.8; R: 49; pens: 64
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: ATLUTD 2 wins, 8 goals … Earthquakes 0 wins, 5 goals … Ties 0
AT ATLANTA: ATLUTD 1 win, 4 goals … Earthquakes 0 wins, 2 goals … Ties 0
- The Quakes continued their road swing with a second loss on the trot, falling 2-1 to New York City FC at Yankee Stadium on Saturday afternoon. Chris Wondolowski scored his 14th goal of the season, now with 158 for his MLS league career.
- Atlanta United have won both meetings all-time between the clubs, both high-scoring affairs, once at each locale. Last year, ATLUTD won 4-3 at Avaya Stadium on Sept. 19; they won the first meeting between the clubs 4-2 on July 4, 2017, at Bobby Dodd Stadium in Atlanta.
ATLUTD: Play FC Cincinnati at Nippert Stadium at midweek.
QUAKES: Vako Qazaishvili recorded his fifth assist of the season, matching his total from a season ago; he has two assists over the last three games. … Magnus Eriksson collected his third assist of the season, now with a goal and three assists over his last four games.
VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC vs. COLUMBUS CREW SC
Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019 (Week 29, MLS Game #368)
BC Place, Vancouver, B.C.
2 p.m. PT (TSN1; FS-OH)
REFEREE: Alex Chilowicz. AR1 (bench): Eduardo Mariscal; AR2 (opposite): Michael Barwegen; 4th: Timothy Ford; VAR: Drew Fischer; AVAR: Mauricio Navarro
MLS Career: 24 games; FC/gm: 24.5; Y/gm: 3.7; R: 4; pens: 9
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Whitecaps FC 5 wins, 14 goals … Crew SC 2 wins, 10 goals … Ties 2
AT VANCOUVER: Whitecaps FC 1 win, 6 goals … Crew SC 1 win, 6 goals … Ties 2
- Whitecaps FC put an end to their three-game losing run, defeating the Houston Dynamo 2-1 at BC Place on Saturday evening. Fredy Montero scored the late game-winner, his seventh goal of the season.
- Crew SC extended their undefeated run to three games with a second victory in that time, defeating Atlanta United 3-1 on Saturday evening at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
- Gyasi Zardes netted his 12th goal of the season, his third goal in the last three games. Zardes has five goals and one assist over his last seven league matches, dating back to July 27.
- Whitecaps FC won the lone meeting between the teams a year ago, a 2-1 victory on March 31 at Mapfre Stadium, their fourth consecutive victory in Columbus. The win extended the ‘Caps undefeated streak in the series to seven games (with five victories in that span) – Crew SC have not defeated Whitecaps FC since the 2011 season, Vancouver’s first year in MLS.
- Crew SC have come away with draws on each of their last two visits to Vancouver, including a 2-2 result in the last meeting at BC Place, Sept. 16, 2017. Crew SC have gained a result on three of their four visits to Vancouver.
WHITECAPS FC: Hwang Inbeom converted a penalty kick for his third goal of the season, his last coming Aug. 3. … Ali Adnan was credited with his fourth assist of the season, his second in the last seven games. … Theo Bair collected his second career assist in MLS, both coming in the last four games.
CREW SC: Luis Díaz scored his second MLS goal, both having come in the last three games (where he also has an assist).
NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION vs. REAL SALT LAKE
Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019 (Week 29, MLS Game #369)
Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Mass.
7:30 p.m. ET (NBCS-Bos; KMYU-21)
REFEREE: Armando Villarreal. AR1 (bench): Jeffrey Greeson; AR2 (opposite): Claudiu Badea; 4th: David Barrie; VAR: Jorge Gonzalez; AVAR: Gjovalin Bori
MLS Career: 133 games; FC/gm: 22.2; Y/gm: 3.1; R: 27; pens: 32
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Revolution 6 wins, 30 goals … Real 10 wins, 38 goals … Ties 5
AT NEW ENGLAND: Revolution 4 wins, 20 goals … Real 4 wins, 13 goals … Ties 2
- The Revolution gained a result for a fifth time in six matches, reaching a 3-3 draw with Orlando City SC at Exploria Stadium on Saturday evening.
- Real Salt Lake opened their road swing with a 3-1 defeat to Minnesota United FC at Allianz Field on Sunday evening.
- Real won the lone meeting between the teams a year ago, a 4-1 victory on Oct. 18 at Rio Tinto Stadium. RSL have won five of seven meetings all-time in Sandy, with two draws; the Revolution’s only wins in Utah came at Rice-Eccles Stadium, the last in 2007.
- The Revolution have won the last two meetings at Gillette Stadium, both by 4-0 scorelines, the last coming May 13, 2017. RSL had won each of the three previous trips to Foxborough, Mass.
REVOLUTION: Carles Gil collected a pair of assists, now with 14 this season, in fourth place in the MLS assist standings. It was his second multiple-assist game in his MLS career. … Gustavo Bou scored his seventh goal, making his 10th appearance since his arrival in MLS. … Cristian Penilla scored his fifth goal of the season, his last coming July 27.
REAL: Albert Rusnák scored the RSL goal, his 10th of the season, equaling his total from a year ago. Rusnák has four goals over his last nine games, since July 13.
FC CINCINNATI vs. CHICAGO FIRE
Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019 (Week 29, MLS Game #370)
Nippert Stadium, Cincinnati, Ohio
7:30 p.m. ET (WSTR – Star 64; ESPN+)
REFEREE: Baldomero Toledo. AR1 (bench): Apolinar Mariscal; AR2 (opposite): Ian McKay; 4th: Fotis Bazakos; VAR: Kevin Terry Jr.; AVAR: Craig Lowry
MLS Career: 286 games; FC/gm: 25.3; Y/gm: 3.6; R: 105; pens: 111
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: FCC 1 win, 2 goals … Fire 0 wins, 1 goal … Ties 0
AT NIPPERT STADIUM: First meeting.
- The Fire came away with a result for a second consecutive match, rolling to a 4-0 victory against FC Dallas at SeatGeek Stadium on Saturday afternoon. CJ Sapong scored a pair of goals, now with 12 for the season, his second season reaching double digits in goals.
- The teams are meeting for the second time this season, and the second time in their histories. Allan Cruz netted the opener in the first minute and Fanendo Adi scored the game-winner with seven minutes to play, leading FC Cincinnati to a 2-1 win on July 13 at SeatGeek Stadium.
FCC: Play Atlanta United at Nippert Stadium at midweek.
FIRE: Przemyslaw Frankowski scored a goal, his third of the season, a second consecutive game with a goal. Frankowski also added his eighth assist of the season; he has a goal and/or an assist in four of his last five games, with two goals and three assists in that span. … … Nemanja Nikolic scored his 12th goal of the season, his last coming Aug. 17; Nikolic has six goals in his last seven games, dating back to Aug. 3. … Nicolás Gaítan recorded his 11th assist of the season, his second in the last three games. … Kenneth Kronholm was credited with four saves in recording his fourth shutout of the season, all coming over his last seven games, since July 27.
SPORTING KANSAS CITY vs. COLORADO RAPIDS
Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019 (Week 29, MLS Game #371)
Children’s Mercy Park, Kansas City, Kan.
7 p.m. CT (FS-KC+; Altitude)
REFEREE: Nima Saghafi. AR1 (bench): Andrew Bigelow; AR2 (opposite): Eric Boria; 4th: Joseph Dickerson; VAR: Geoff Gamble; AVAR: Peter Balciunas
MLS Career: 58 games; FC/gm: 26.8; Y/gm: 4.0; R: 8; pens: 21
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Sporting 25 wins (1 shootout), 101 goals … Rapids 23 wins (3 shootout), 83 goals … Ties 15
AT KC: Sporting 20 wins (0 shootout), 62 goals … Rapids 5 wins (1 shootout), 30 goals … Ties 9
- Sporting suffered a second loss on the trot, equaling their club record in a 7-2 loss to the LA Galaxy at Dignity Health Sports Park. Felipe Gutiérrez scored both Sporting goals, giving him 12 for the season, the fifth multiple-goal game of his MLS career.
- The Rapids had their three-game winning run put to an end, falling 3-2 to Toronto FC at BMO Field on Sunday afternoon. Keegan Rosenberry scored his first goal of the season and also set up the second Colorado goal, the first time in his MLS career he had a goal and an assist in the same game.
- The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Diego Rubio gave the Rapids the lead just after halftime, but Johnny Russell whipped home a free kick for the leveler in the 88th minute, leaving the teams in a 1-1 draw March 17 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.
- Sporting have won the past two meetings in KC, last a 1-0 victory there May 5, 2018, after a two-game Colorado winning streak at Children’s Mercy Park – the Rapids’ first two wins in Kansas City since the 2002 season.
SPORTING: Gerso Fernandes collected his sixth assist of the season, his last coming Aug. 4, setting a single-season career-high in his three MLS seasons. … Gianluca Busio recorded his first assist of the season, his second career assist in MLS (in 25 appearances in two seasons).
RAPIDS: Sam Nicholson scored his second goal of the season, his first coming July 13, a second consecutive season scoring two goals with the Rapids.
HOUSTON DYNAMO vs. ORLANDO CITY SC
Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019 (Week 29, MLS Game #372)
BBVA Stadium, Houston, Texas
7:30 p.m. CT (KUBE 57; YouTube TV [ORL] / FOX 35 Plus)
REFEREE: Rubiel Vazquez. AR1 (bench): Kevin Klinger; AR2 (opposite): C.J. Morgante; 4th: Sergii Demianchuk; VAR: Allen Chapman; AVAR: Jonathan Johnson
MLS Career: 26 games; FC/gm: 20.9; Y/gm: 3.2; R: 6; pens: 5
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Dynamo 1 win, 4 goals … Orlando City 1 win, 1 goal … Ties 2
AT HOUSTON: Dynamo 1 win, 4 goals … Orlando City 1 win, 1 goal … Ties 0
- The Dynamo weren’t able to build upon a first win in eight matches, dropping a 2-1 decision to Vancouver Whitecaps FC at BC Place on Saturday evening.
- Orlando City SC gained a second draw in a row, coming back for a 3-3 result with the New England Revolution at Exploria Stadium on Saturday evening.
- The teams reached a goalless draw in their lone meeting a year ago, Sept. 22 in Orlando, the second 0-0 draw in two meetings there.
- The Dynamo won the last meeting in Houston, a 4-0 win on May 6, 2017, at BBVA Stadium, after Orlando City SC took a 1-0 win in the first-ever meeting between the clubs, March 13, 2015.
DYNAMO: Mauro Manotas netted a goal for a second consecutive game, now with 13 for the season, sitting in eighth place in the MLS Golden Boot standings.
OCSC: Nani played a part in all three OCSC goals, scoring two, now with 12 for the season, with three in the past two matches. … Dom Dwyer scored his sixth goal of the season, his last coming July 7. … Mauricio Pereyra collected his first career MLS assist, making his third appearance.
LA GALAXY vs. MONTREAL IMPACT
Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019 (Week 29, MLS Game #373)
Dignity Health Sports Park, Carson, Calif.
7:30 p.m. PT (TVA Sports; SpecSN)
REFEREE: Kevin Stott. AR1 (bench): Jeff Hosking; AR2 (opposite): Chris Elliott; 4th: Thomas Snyder; VAR: Edvin Jurisevic; AVAR: Joshua Patlak
MLS Career: 348 games; FC/gm: 24.6; Y/gm: 3.1; R: 82; pens: 95
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Galaxy 3 wins, 9 goals … Impact 1 win, 6 goals … Ties 3
AT GALAXY: Galaxy 2 wins, 3 goals … Impact 0 wins, 0 goals … Ties 1
- The Galaxy scored seven goals or more in a game for the third time in club history, defeating Sporting Kansas City 7-2 at Dignity Health Sports Park on Sunday evening, putting an end to a four-game winless run.
- Zlatan Ibrahimović scored his third hat trick in MLS, now with 26 goals for the season, the eighth player in league history to score that many goals in a season. The 26 goals also set a Galaxy club record, surpassing the 24 scored by Carlos Ruiz in 2002.
- The Impact suffered a second setback in a row, falling 1-0 to FC Cincinnati at Nippert Stadium on Saturday evening.
- The Galaxy won the lone meeting between the teams a year ago, a 1-0 victory on May 21 at Stade Saputo. It was their second consecutive win in the series, their first ever in Montréal.
- The Impact have never scored a goal in Carson, Calif., in three visits. The Galaxy won 2-0 in the last meeting there on April 7, 2017, their second victory in three matches in Carson (with one draw).
GALAXY: Sebastian Lletget scored two goals, the first multiple-goal game of his MLS career. Lletget also added an assist, the second time he’s had a goal and an assist in the same game; he has three assists in the last four games. … Uriel Antuna scored a goal and added an assist, the first time in his MLS career he’s had a goal and an assist in the same game. Antuna has two goals in his last three games. … Joe Corona also scored a goal and added an assist, netting his first MLS goal in the process. … Rolf Feltscher collected two assists, his first since April 5, the first multiple-assist game of his MLS career. … Cristian Pavón collected an assist for a fourth consecutive game (also with a goal in that span).
IMPACT: The Impact play host to the first leg of the Canadian Championship when they take on Toronto FC at Stade Saputo on Wednesday evening. Before the 2018 season, the teams had met in every season they have been together in MLS in the Canadian Championship, with each team defeating the other once for the title – TFC winning the second of their three titles in a row in 2017, while the Impact won the title in 2014.
LOS ANGELES FOOTBALL CLUB vs. TORONTO FC
Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019 (Week 29, MLS Game #374)
Banc of California Stadium, Los Angeles, Calif.
7:30 p.m. PT (TSN 1/4; YouTube TV [LA] / KVMD)
REFEREE: Ted Unkel. AR1 (bench): Ian Anderson; AR2 (opposite): Jeremy Kieso; 4th: Elijio Arreguin; VAR: Caleb Mendez; AVAR: Fabio Tovar
MLS Career: 94 games; FC/gm: 23.5; Y/gm: 4.0; R: 32; pens: 52
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: LAFC 1 win, 4 goals … Toronto FC 0 wins, 2 goals … Ties 0
AT BANC OF CALIFORNIA STADIUM: First meeting.
- LAFC reached a third draw in their last four matches, playing to a 1-1 draw with the Philadelphia Union at Talen Energy Stadium on Saturday evening.
- TFC extended their league undefeated streak to seven games, getting a late winner for a 3-2 victory against the Colorado Rapids at BMO Field on Sunday afternoon.
- Jonathan Osorio netted the game-winner, his fifth goal of the season, after Alejandro Pozuelo scored his 11th goal of the season, his second in as many games.
- The teams met once in LAFC’s inaugural season a year ago, LAFC taking a 4-2 win on Sept. 1 at BMO Field.
LAFC: Carlos Vela scored his 28th goal of the season, now the second-most in a single season in MLS history, behind the 31 netted by Josef Martínez of Atlanta United a season ago.
TFC: Tsubasa Endoh scored his second goal of the season, his first coming in the first minute on June 26. … Jozy Altidore recorded his sixth assist of the season; he has a goal and three assists over the last four games. … Marky Delgado collected his sixth assist of the campaign, a single-season career-high in his eighth MLS season. Delgado has two goals and three assists over the last six games. … Richie Laryea recorded his second assist, the third of his MLS career.
PORTLAND TIMBERS vs. MINNESOTA UNITED FC
Sunday, Sept. 22, 2019 (Week 29, MLS Game #375)
Providence Park, Portland, Ore.
12:55 p.m. PT (ESPN / ESPN Deportes; TSN2; FS-North)
REFEREE: Robert Sibiga. AR1 (bench): Corey Rockwell; AR2 (opposite): Frank Anderson; 4th: Marcos de Oliveira; VAR: Victor Rivas; AVAR: Cameron Blanchard
MLS Career: 97 games; FC/gm: 22.0; Y/gm: 3.5; R: 24; pens: 28
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Timbers 2 wins, 12 goals … MNUFC 3 wins, 10 goals … Ties 0
AT PORTLAND: Timbers 2 wins, 8 goals … MNUFC 0 wins, 3 goals … Ties 0
- MNUFC won a second game in their past three outings, defeating Real Salt Lake 3-1 at Allianz Field on Sunday evening. Darwin Quintero scored a pair of goals, now with 10 for the season, reaching double figures for a second season in MLS.
- The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Ethan Finlay netted a penalty kick in stoppage time for the game’s only goal on Aug. 4 at Allianz Field.
- The teams have met five times overall, and the home team has won each. The Timbers have won both meetings at Providence Park, last a 3-2 win on April 14, 2018; they defeated MNUFC 5-1 in P