Match Report

Match Report: LA Galaxy at Seattle Sounders FC | October 4, 2023

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SEATTLE, Wash. (Wednesday, Oct. 4, 2023) – Playing the first of two road matches in the span of four days, the LA Galaxy fell 2-1 to Seattle Sounders FC at Lumen Field on Wednesday night. Next up, the Galaxy play their last match on the road during the 2023 campaign against Minnesota United FC at Allianz Field on Saturday, Oct. 7 (5:30 p.m. PT; MLS Season Pass on Apple TVLA Galaxy RadioLA Galaxy Spanish Radio).

LA Galaxy Run Of Form
Following the loss to Seattle, the LA Galaxy fell to 6-3-8 (33 GF, 29 GA) in their last 17 regular season matches played dating back to May 31. During that span, LA ranks tied for the fewest losses in the league (3) and second in MLS in goals scored (36) behind only the Columbus Crew (38). With three games remaining in the 2023 MLS Regular Season, the LA Galaxy (31 GP, 8-12-11, 35 PTS) sit in 13th place in the Western Conference standings and six points behind ninth place FC Dallas (31 GP, 10-10-11, 41 PTS) for the final playoff spot.

Goal-Scoring Plays
SEA – Jordan Morris (Joao Paulo), 9th minute: Joao Paulo’s cross from the right flank found Jordan Morris, whose header from point-blank-range found the back of the net. 

LA – Douglas Costa (Julián Aude), 54th minute: Julián Aude whipped in a cross at the top of the box to Douglas Costa, who took a touch past a group of Seattle defenders before firing his shot past Stefan Frei from close range. 

SEA – Cristian Roldan (Josh Atencio, Alex Roldan), 90+6th minute: Cristian Roldan volleyed a flicked header from just outside the six-yard box and into the bottom right corner. 

Postgame Notes

  • With three games remaining in the 2023 MLS Regular Season, the LA Galaxy (31 GP, 8-12-11, 35 PTS) sit in 13th place in the Western Conference standings and six points behind ninth place FC Dallas (31 GP, 10-10-11, 41 PTS) for the final playoff spot. 
  • Following the loss to Seattle, the LA Galaxy fell to 6-3-8 (33 GF, 29 GA) in their last 17 regular season matches played dating back to May 31. 
  • Dating back to May 31, LA ranks tied for the fewest losses in the league (3) and second in MLS in goals scored (36) behind only the Columbus Crew (38).
  • Wednesday’s match marked the 48th meeting across all competitions between the Galaxy and Sounders FC, with LA trailing the all-time series 16-19-13.
  • Against Seattle, the Galaxy hold a 10-14-13 record in league play, a 4-3-0 record in the MLS Cup Playoffs and a 2-2-0 record in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. 
  • In three meetings between the two teams across all competitions this season, LA held a 1-2-0 record against Sounders FC. 
  • Douglas Costa tallied a goal, recorded three successful dribbles and completed 31 of 34 passes (91.2%) in the match against Seattle. 
  • Costa has recorded two goals and nine assists in his last 11 regular-season starts across 843 minutes played (1.17 combined goals and assists per 90 min.) dating back to June 11. 
  • Julián Aude recorded his first career MLS assist for the LA Galaxy in the match against Seattle Sounders FC. 
  • In two career matches played across all competitions against Seattle, Aude has tallied one goal and one assist. 
  • Edwin Cerrillo won two tackles and a game-high 14 possessions and recorded one interception in the match against Sounders FC. 
  • Billy Sharp played in his 700th career club match. 

Next Game
Next up, the LA Galaxy travel to face Minnesota United FC at Allianz Field on Saturday, Oct. 7. The match on Oct. 7 kicks off at 5:30 p.m. PT and will be broadcasted live on MLS Season Pass on Apple TV. 
2023 MLS Regular Season 
LA Galaxy (8-12-11, 35pts) at Seattle Sounders FC (13-9-10, 49 pts)
Wednesday, Oct. 4, 2023 – Lumen Field (Seattle, Wash.)

Goals by Half                1          2          F
LA Galaxy                     0          1          1
Seattle Sounders FC     1          1          2

Scoring Summary:
SEA: Morris (Paulo), 9
LA: Costa (Aude), 54
SEA: Roldan (Atencio, Roldan), 90+6

Misconduct Summary:
LA: Leerdam (caution), 37

LA: GK Jonathan Bond, D Kelvin Leerdam, D Maya Yoshida ©, D Tony Alfaro, D Julián Aude (Raheem Edwards, 71); M Edwin Cerrillo, M Uri Rosell, M Tyler Boyd, M Douglas Costa, M Diego Fagundez (Dejan Joveljić, 66); F Billy Sharp

Substitutes Not Used: GK Novak Mićović, D Mauricio Cuevas; M Daniel Aguirre, M Jonathan Pérez, M Adam Saldaña, M Gino Vivi

TOTAL SHOTS: 5 (Douglas Costa, 2); SHOTS ON GOAL: 1 (Douglas Costa, 1); FOULS: 10 (Three players tied, 2); OFFSIDES: 1; CORNER KICKS: 1; SAVES: 2

SEA: GK Stefan Frei ©; D Nouhou, D Jackson Ragen, D Yeimar; M Joao Paulo (Josh Atencio, 80), M Cristian Roldan, M Albert Rusnak (Nico Lodeiro, 66), M Alex Roldan, M Leo Chu (Reed Baker-Whiting, 66), M Obed Vargas; F Jordan Morris (Heber, 80)

Substitutes Not Used: GK Stefan Cleveland; D Xavier Arreaga, M Kelyn Rowe, M Paul Rothrock; F Fredy Montero

TOTAL SHOTS: 18 (Albert Rusnak, 4); SHOTS ON GOAL: 4 (Four players tied, 1); FOULS: 13 (Jordan Morris, Yeimar, 3); OFFSIDES: 0; CORNER KICKS: 10; SAVES: 0

Referee: Victor Rivas
Assistant Referees: Kathryn Nesbitt, Eric Weisbrod
Fourth Official: Sergii Boiko
VAR: Kevin Terry Jr.
Weather: Clear, 60 degrees

_All statistics contained in this box score are unofficial


On his general thoughts on the game, and the ending and the emotions:
“My general thoughts on the game, were… the mission tonight was to be in it. Take one, if we had to and three if we could. I still felt like 10 [points] would give us a good shot still. But, we felt like the three if we were even, that we would see if we could play for the three, with the mindset of not giving away the one, obviously. And so, the gut punch in the end, is that it’s the last play of the game. From my vantage point, it’s a bit of a deflection off the three of them and it’s out for a throw in. I’m not so sure it’s even their throw, but, I tried to watch the replay and it wasn’t clear and that’s not my job, anyway. But, when they get the long throw and they’ve got some big guys in there, we’ve got to do a better job of fronting the big guys and try to make it really difficult for them to try and get the flick. And then, [Cristian] Roldan just runs off the back of us as we’re kind of ball watching what’s happening at the front, and Roldan sneaks in behind us as we lose our mark, and, you know, as would have it, with everything, the ball finds the guy that’s in front of the goal to finish it. So, after a ton of work, effort, not as easy place to play, I was really proud of the group. Their fight. Their spirit. And working through it in a difficult place. To lose the point at the end is heartbreaking for the group. And just, again, for the effort that the guys put in, what they’ve continued to battle against all year, but even tonight, just looking at the microcosm of tonight. They’ve battled the situation where they had to get a point.” 

On Douglas Costa’s goal and the goal coming out of the second half:
“I thought in the first half, our biggest issue was initiating pressure so it wasn’t just so easy for them to play balls in between our lines or get around the outside of us. The more we stayed more passive and just in our block, it created a problem for us. Because they were able to take as much time as they wanted and just look for passes that were pinning us back a little bit. And they’ve got big, strong center backs that when they get you in deep and you’re dealing with stuff a little lower, then it’s not so easy to get out of situations because you’re now trying to target, sometimes your strikers, or your other players, and they’re dealing with big, strong center backs. And sometimes we were able to, and sometimes we weren’t. So, halftime, the discussion was how to be more efficient about initiating pressure and not giving them such easy starts to their attacks so that we could try and force them to where we wanted them, which was part of the pregame, too, but we just weren’t as cohesive with Douglas [Costa] playing as the 10, it’s not something that he always does. And, Billy [Sharp] relatively new, the two of them working to try to coordinate a little bit wasn’t as coordinated as we wanted, so we just tried to clear it up. I thought we did a little better job of initiating pressure, recovering balls in better positions so that our transitions weren’t so deep. They were a little bit higher, which then enabled us to start attacks in better places. And as you said, we get a goal coming out of half, which was good. And, at 1-1, we were going to let it go to about 65, 70, and then we like the other day, a couple days, against Austin, the two forwards, we talked about what it would look like with two forwards and tucking in. But we never fully got situated in that situation in that organization in my opinion. But nevertheless, everybody did the work, and we put ourselves in position to take a point and we just have to execute the last throw in and clear the ball. And that’s then the game. I think over my shoulder the coaches said ’10 seconds’ as the throw in was about to go in for the whatever it was five minutes, four minutes of extra time. It was literally one play left to get out of there with something.” _

On the status of Mark Delgado and Eriq Zavaleta:
“[Mark] Delgado, he came out of the game with concussion symptoms, so he went into the protocol. He’s doing better. He’s making the progressions that he needs and we’re optimistic that he’ll pass all the steps, we hope, for Saturday. Riqui [Puig] making a progression, we hope he will be ready for Saturday. We’ll see. Zav [Eriq Zavaleta] was having lower back spasms coming out of the game and off the travel and the trip and everything else, which, is difficult. He wasn’t able, really, training yesterday, he was immobile. So he wasn’t ready to go tonight. So, again, as it would have, we’re working through it. Let’s just put it that way. And the guys keep stepping up and giving themselves opportunities, but again, it’s every play for 90 minutes. And we went 94.50 [minutes] and didn’t complete it.” 

On the first goal, seeing chemistry between Julian Aude and Douglas Costa, and the lack of chemistry between the 11 players on the field and what’s causing the defensive giveaways:
“Sometimes. I thought Douglas [Costa] makes a decision to save a ball that’s going out of bounds, and when he saves it, it’s right on to the player’s foot, their player, who then now is whipping a ball in front of our goal. Sometimes I think they just… the calculation of those… if you’re being eliminated in a situation, and it’s down in our final quarter of the field, I’m not so sure that it’s better to let that go out of bounds, but then you look at the last play of the game, and you say, a throw in could lead to something like that. But, in my opinion, I think we’re probably better off just letting that go out of bounds, blocking our group off and dealing with it. Nevertheless, he tried to save it, it was an honest effort, and the ball gets whipped in front of the goal. And they win the position and score. I think it’s one of those things where you probably save that a number of times and nothing comes out of it over the course of the season. But, he saved it, we didn’t get there, they whipped it in and found their guy right on the head in front of the goal. So now you’re 1-0 in the first 10 minutes. Just chemistry and continuity. At the end of the day, when you have as many injuries as we have, and I haven’t sat up here and complained about all of our injuries and I don’t want to, because I’m really proud of the guys because they kept fighting and doing their job. But, when you have as many changes as we’ve had, you’re going to have some continuity issues. It’s not like the group has played a ton of games. This group has played a ton of battle-tested games together. Having said that, we’re still in every game. Coming away with points in the vast majority of these games. And we were down to one play. And that’s just to the guys putting gin the work. Doing their best. And trying to stick to the plan as much as they can. But there just isn’t a lot of repetition in our group. When you look at the other side, the team on the other side, that team has won championships with most of them. That team has played huge games, and there’s continuity there. Certainly those are… you can say that stuff is in the margins for sure. Sometimes it’s even more than the margins. But it is what it is and I’m really proud of this group the way they kept fighting, and we’re going to go into Minnesota and work our asses off there and we’re going to go for three points, because we know that’s what keeps us in it. And we’re going to go for three points. But the way to get to three points is to execute every play over the course of the game and not allow ourselves to get burned on one of these plays. Making sure we’re marking our guys and making sure we’re making sound decisions. The best we can in this group. Again, I’m proud of this group. I can’t tell you how proud I am of their work. We just haven’t been able to see out some of these draws that we would have liked to be three points. And some of these… tonight, we would have liked to have been one point. We’re just super thin on the margins. We don’t have any margins. We have to win all three games. And that’s the only even hope if everything goes right for us on the other side.” 

On the effort the squad put into the game, and what this result feels like:
“Yes, for sure. Like you said, Greg [Vanney] said, you put in the hard work. Everybody knows how difficult it is to get a result in Seattle. I’ve been on the other side for a long time. We put in the work, and sometimes it’s not about playing good football. Sometimes it’s about energy and fight. I think we’ve done all of that today. And then it hurts in the end if you see it go away like that. It’s just one play. One final play and we didn’t make it.” 

On why it’s so difficult to win in Seattle and if it’s because of the turf, and if he fell back into groove with the turf quickly:
“For me, for myself, it’s not a problem. As I said, I’ve been on the other side. Obviously, the home team has an advantage. That’s how it is. There’s on other way around. But, you’ve got to deal with it. For 95 minutes, we did. We did for 95 minutes. And as I said, it’s one final play. If you want to go where we want to go, you have to also deal with those situations. We should have made that play. That’s all I can say.”

On being six points out from the last playoff spot, and what Minnesota means for the team now:
“For me, it doesn’t matter who is in front of us. We know what we have to do. We have to win all our games. So, I’m not looking at which team we’re playing, where we’re playing. I’m only thinking about winning. I think everybody in the locker room thinks that way. Today we wanted to win also. That’s why it hurts so much. I think that’s what we all care about. Forget about the names. Forget about who we play. It’s all about us now. I think we have to give it all until the final second of the season. And we know what we have to do. Nine points. That’s all that counts. Nine points.”