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Galaxy vs. Whitecaps: Villarreal has biggest Impact on victory

the LA Galaxy defeated the Vancouver Whitecaps 2-1 on Saturday and the Match Impact Ratings are in. The two homegrown forwards showed well, with defenders getting the assist on each goal.


The Match Impact Ratings are in, and the two homegrown forwards showed well as the LA Galaxy defeated the Vancouver Whitecaps 2-1. Defenders notched assists on each goal, so this time out the midfield took a backseat with end to end and set pieces winning the day.

The two homegrown forwards Jose Villarreal and Gyasi Zardes were neck and neck for Impact player of the week. Each scoring one of LA's two goals, Villarreal got the slight edge on Zardes after being subbed out (fewer minutes means higher averages) for the top MIR in the match at 46. Jose Villarreal was also Who Scored's man of the match amongst three players who finished with a 8.0 player rating.

Creating goals from set pieces was a strength for LA against Vancouver, getting five such scoring opportunities. Villarreal has indirect set piece threat as one of his strengths, not the target in the box but quick enough to knock in a loose ball. That's exactly what happened as Omar Gonzalez kept the ball in play and Gyasi Zardes was lucky enough to miss the ball as it came back in, keeping Villarreal onside.

Zardes was right behind Villarreal in the Match Impact chart, finishing with an MIR of 44.4. While Who Scored lists creating scoring opportunities through individual skill as a strength for LA against Vancouver, his ability to create something from nothing hasn't translated to goals from the run of play that often. His speed and ball control skills both showed up in his goal, and are skills fans have been waiting to pay off.

The Galaxy attacked more down the right side than the left, but Omar Gonzalez and Todd Dunivant both picked up assists and showed well in Match Impact Rating; Gonzalez at 39.8 and Dunivant at 30. Dunivant had 71 touches in the match, and his long ball freed Zardes to go one on one through the Vancouver penalty box. Gonzalez' strength on aerial battles helped Jose Villarreal to his goal.

End to end play and set pieces got LA their two goals, so the midfielders came in next down the list: Juninho 29.3, Sarvas 26, Mastroeni 11.3, Hector 10.5. Jimenez did have the strongest rating on Who Scored, hitting the woodwork and going the full 90.