(East Los Angeles, CA) [From The Editor’s Desk]: The LAFC Black & Gold went back on the road to do what Head Coach Steve Cherundolo strongly urged his team to do, in so many words…let’s win, finish this, and then come back home and wait for the next round to start.
And sure enough, they reacted and positively responded to his call by defeating the home team, Vancouver Whitecaps FC, in a shut-out by the Full-Time score of (1-0). The single goal came at the (24:00) minute mark when the Golden Boot Winner, and the reliable #99 Dénis Bouanga, blasting a Penalty Kick to his right, while the goalkeeper guessed he would go to his left side.
There would be no additional scoring until very late in the match when the Black & Gold broke out in a “3-on-1” fast break with El Cápitan, Carlos Vela, and Bouanga teaming up for the attack on the goalie. It appeared that Bouanga had scored his second goal of the match after Vela beautifully assisted him, but immediately after the apparent score, Referee, Timothy Ford, was swarmed by a group of 5-7 Whitecaps on the field for not stopping the play due to one of their players colliding with him at midfield. Ford then ordered a VAR, nullified the goal, and ordered play to resume in stoppage time until he blew his whistle to end the match.
Read on in more details on the LAFC Communications Staff’s press announcement. We’ve also selected pictures from the team’s great photo gallery for your viewing. One last and important note to share is that the announced attendance was 30,204.
LAFC COMPLETE SERIES SWEEP OF VANCOUVER, DEFEAT WHITECAPS 1-0 TO ADVANCE TO WESTERN CONFERENCE SEMIFINALS
The Los Angeles Football Club (LAFC) advanced to the Western Conference Semifinals, completing the sweep of the Vancouver Whitecaps with a 1-0 victory in Game 2 of their Best-of-3 Round One series at BC Place in Vancouver.
MLS Golden Boot winner Dénis Bouanga scored the game’s only goal in the 24th minute, converting a penalty kick for his 36th goal in all competitions this year after Mario Gonzalez had been fouled inside the box.
At the other end of the field, LAFC goalkeeper Maxime Crepeau made a postseason career-high five saves to keep a clean sheet and to give the club their first-ever postseason road victory.
The Black & Gold will now advance to the Western Conference Semifinals where they will face the winner of the Round One Best-of-3 series between the Seattle Sounders and FC Dallas. That series is currently tied at 1-1 with Game 3 to be played in Seattle on Friday, November 10.
[NEWS & NOTES]
- With this win, LAFC is now unbeaten in five straight games in all competitions, and unbeaten in their last five MLS Cup Playoff games dating back to the start of the 2022 postseason.
- This was the first time that LAFC had ever won a postseason game on the road. Prior to tonight, seven of LAFC’s first eight playoff games had been played at home, with the lone road game coming in the 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs against Seattle, a game LAFC lost 3-1.
- In the 2022 MLS regular season, LAFC was 0-1-1 against Vancouver. However, the Club is now a perfect 4-0-0 against the Whitecaps in Concacaf Champions League and MLS Cup Playoff action, scoring 12 goals while conceding just two.
- LAFC is now 14-0-3 when scoring first in MLS competitions this year, including 4-0-2 away from home.
- LAFC played its 50th official game of 2023 tonight. The club has now played 34 regular season games, eight Concacaf Champions League games, three Leagues Cup games, two U.S. Open Cup games, two MLS Cup Playoff games and one game in the Campeones Cup against Tigres. In those 50 games, LAFC now has 21 wins, 15 losses and 13 draws while scoring 90 goals and conceding 55.
- With his goal tonight, Dénis Bouanga now has 36 goals in all competitions for LAFC in 2023. That moves him past Josef Martinez for the second most goals in a single year in MLS history. Only Carlos Vela – with 38 goals in 2019 – has scored more than Bouanga’s 36.
- Bouanga, who already entered the game as LAFC’s all-time leading postseason goal scorer, now has five postseason goals in five postseason games with the club.
- He has now scored nine goals in his last five games with LAFC.
- Maxime Crepeau made five saves, setting a new career-high.
- Mario Gonzalez and Aaron Long each made their first-ever LAFC postseason starts in the game while Nathan Ordaz came on at halftime to make the first-ever postseason appearance.
- Carlos Vela, the only LAFC player to have appeared in all nine of the club’s MLS Cup Playoff games, came off the bench in the 87th minute, replacing Nathan Ordaz. This was the first time ever that Vela did not start a postseason game for LAFC.