LAFC scored five unanswered goals in Saturday’s El Trafico matchup at the MLS is Back Tournament, cruising to a 6-2 win over the LA Galaxy in Group F play.
Diego Rossi scored four goals, while Bradley Wright-Phillips and Mohamed El-Munir each tallied in the second half to squash the Galaxy’s hopes after leading 2-1 during the first half. Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez missed the game after suffering an injury in training midweek, and Carlos Vela previously withdrew due to his wife’s pregnancy.
Rossi scored in the 13th, 75th and 92nd minutes, plus during first-half stoppage time, to give LAFC the most lopsided result in El Trafico history and draw the all-time series level at 2-2-3. The Uruguayan forward first tallied from the penalty-kick spot after Wright-Phillips was pulled down by Perry Kitchen in the 18-yard box on a corner kick. He then thrice deposited one-time finishes with his right foot, filling in at center forward when Wright-Phillips was subbed off in the 71st minute.
Despite Rossi’s star showing, the Galaxy opened a 1-0 lead in the 5th minute via an own goal; Sebastian Lletget’s squared ball was passed into the LAFC net by Latif Blessing. Rossi’s PK then made it 1-1, only for the Galaxy to claim a 2-1 lead in the 31st minute when Cristian Pavon made amends on a second attempt from 12 yards out. LAFC goalkeeper Pablo Sisniega saved Pavon’s first PK, but rushed off his line prematurely, giving Pavon another try that he buried into the left-hand corner.
Leading 3-2 at halftime, LAFC started to put the game out of reach in the 56th minute through Wright-Phillips. The veteran curled home through traffic to land his second goal in as many games after joining from the New York Red Bulls. El-Munir then rocketed home a left-footed blast in the 80th minute to make it 5-2, putting an exclamation point on a dominant second half.
Before LAFC pulled away late, Pavon thought he had a game-tying goal in the 54th minute. He deposited past Sisniega after a Lletget through ball, but an offside flag waved off a strike that would have made it 3-3. From there, LAFC poured on the goals.