In the 14th addition of El Tráfico, the LA Galaxy emerged a 2-1 winner against LAFC on Saturday.
Another entertaining clash between these two rivals ignited early on when Chicharito opened the scoring in the 13th minute, finding a ball from Samuel Grandsir at the far post.
Fellow countryman Carlos Vela hit the post and had a goal disallowed for offside soon after, but it was the Galaxy who celebrated again when Sega Coulibaly was met with another beautiful delivery from Grandsir.
LAFC pressed hard after halftime and finally found the net when Cristian Arango fired home the rebound as Jonathan Bond saved another effort from Vela.
But not so for Black and Gold, who were left desperately chasing a lost cause with their undefeated record this season finally fading. Latif Blessing’s late equalizer ruled out after VAR only served to sum up LAFC’s bad luck on the day.
The win puts the LA Galaxy on 12 points after six games, just one behind LAFC, which came atop the overall standings this weekend.
Here are the full player ratings from another entertaining Traffic encounter:
Jonathan Bond (Goalkeeper) – 7 – He made a couple of big saves to keep the Galaxy out of his reach.
Julián Araujo (RB) – 6 – A solid hour from Araujo, who was clean with the ball and aggressive on defense.
Sega Coulibaly (CB) – 8 – Crawled across the far post to make it 2-0 and did his part defensively.
Derrick Williams (CB) – 7 – Solid on and off the ball.
Raheem Edwards (LB) – 7 – He didn’t find his mark on every ball, but he always looked to do positive things and caused problems for LAFC.
Rayan Ravelson (CM) – 5 – Caught in possession in the first half, but Vela couldn’t punish. Sloppy by his standards.
Kelvin Leerdam (CM) – 7 – Played a large part of the game in an unfamiliar role in midfield, but was tidy on the ball and solid off it.
Víctor Vázquez (CAM) – 6 – Fitted well into the system but didn’t have many defining individual moments.
Efrain Alvarez (RW) – 5 – A quiet afternoon by Álvarez’s standards. Quite frustrating at times.
Peas (ST) – 8 – He came up with the opening goal just as we expected the Galaxy talisman to do. He kept the ball well and committed many fouls to gain ground on his team.
Samuel Grandsir (LW) – 9 – A great call to start ahead of Douglas Costa, but Grandsir rewarded Greg Vanney with two fantastic assists in the first half.
Sacha Kljestan (for Araujo, 59 minutes) – 5 – A little sloppy when he came in, but he did enough to slow things down and shut out LAFC.
Douglas Costa (for Grandsir, 59 minutes) – 6 – He continued to take the fight to LAFC with some direct dribbling.
Kevin Cabral (for Vázquez 67 minutes) – 6 – He had some dangerous moments and made an impact from the bench.
Nick DePuy (for Williams, 77 mins) – 5 – Compensated for some nervous moments with a great block to deny Vela late.
Dejan Joveljic (for Chicharito 77 minutes) – 4 – He barely intervened.
Maxime Crepeau (Goalkeeper) – 5 – Helpless for the two goals. I cleaned up some long balls behind the LAFC defense.
Ryan Hollingshead (RB) – 4 – Ineffective at both ends of the field, leaving too much room on defense and missing his mark on the ball.
Jesús Murillo (CB) – 3 – He hesitated to clear the ball on Galaxy’s second goal, which effectively killed the game.
Mamadou Fall (CB) – 4 – Made a couple of impressive blocks but lost track of Chicharito for the opening goal. Cruelly called offside when LAFC’s late draw was ruled out.
Diego Palacios (LB) – 6 – Did his fair share of defensive work and played a clever long shot in the build-up to Arango’s goal.
Kellyn Acosta (CM) – 5 – He makes some dangerous deliveries from set pieces, but less effective from open play.
Ilie Sanchez (CM) – 7 – So clean and tidy on the ball. He always looked to play the ball forward and unblinking under pressure. LAFC’s midfield driver.
José Cifuentes (CM) – 5 – Had a couple of dangerous moments but too calm overall.
Brian Rodriguez (RW) – 6 – Taken out after just 12 minutes with what looks like a serious hamstring injury. It’s a shame given that you can light lamps like this.
Carlos Vela (ST) – 6 – He forced the rebound for Arango’s goal and had one of his strikers annulled harshly for offside. By far LAFC’s biggest threat.
Kwadwo Opoku (LW) – 6 – Created some dangerous openings and was always positive with the ball at his feet, even if he missed with the final ball at times.
Ismael Tajouri-Shradi (for Rodríguez, 12 minutes) – 6 – He looked dangerous on both flanks with his dribbles and crosses, despite not reaching a decisive moment.
Cristian Arango (for Opoku, 66 minutes) – 7 – Shot alert on the rebound that put LAFC back in the game. Hopefully it will be a confidence booster for the Colombian.
Latif Blessing (for Cifuentes, 67 mins) – 6 – Tried to pick up the pace and was harshly denied an equalizer right at the end.