All the hype pre-game was on Gyasi Zardes returning to his old stomping grounds, but it was Ola Kamara’s 42nd minute strike that kicked off a comprehensive victory over the Columbus Crew Saturday night at the StubHub Center.
LA’s first chance came in the 17th minute when Giovani dos Santos got on the end of a Ola Kamara flick on, but after waiting for the ball to cross his body Gio sliced his shot wide.
Minutes later a Eduardo Sosa shot from close range just missed the target, reminding LA of the Crew’s attacking threat. Columbus dominated the midfield in the early going but were mostly limited to speculative efforts from distance.
The Galaxy slowly but surely worked their way into the match, and right before the halftime break LA deservedly pulled ahead: Ashley Cole and Jonathan dos Santos executed a textbook give-and-go on the left touchline, and the ageless defender fizzed a low ball across the goalmouth for the Norwegian international to tuck away past keeper Zack Steffen.
Things only got better for Sigi Schmid’s men in the second half. After Zlatan Ibrahimovic drew and converted a penalty for his 11th goal of the 2018 MLS season, substitute Romain Alessandrini picked center back Lalas Abubakar’s pocket outside the box and eventually smashed a low finish past Steffen to give LA a rare three goal advantage.
Alessandrini completed his brace with seconds remaining, blasting a rocket off a breakaway that gave the helpless Steffen no chance.
The Galaxy head back east next week to battle the New England Revolution.