The LA Galaxy started the game a little slow, but settled in at about the 10-minute mark, then took control of the game while Nashville SC sat back and waited for the counter. The Galaxy probed the solid Nashville defense multiple times, but with a lack of a final pass (first half) and hesitation (second half), just couldn’t to find the back of the net…up until the 86th minute. Then Dejan Joveljić found his moment.
Up until that point, Kévin Cabral remained painfully frustrating with runs that were stopped short, near misses, or Walker Zimmerman tackles off his toe. I feel for him. He scored in Open Cup play this past week, but scoring in the MLS regular season eludes him. He has a major monkey on his back, and knows it. He and Chicharito are still on different planets when it comes to timing. This one is on Kévin since Chicharito sends in some decent passes, and it’s brutal to watch.
Douglas Costa also looked a bit rusty in the second half, and Raheem Edwards and Samuel Grandsir didn’t have their usual assists. That said, the team laid down an incredible amount of pressure in the second half that finally culminated in a goal, and a well taken one at that. By the end of the game the Galaxy had sixteen shots to Nashville’s four. Kudos to Joveljić for a one-touch finish, and a great celebration into the stands.
The defense must also be mentioned. Derrick Williams and Séga Coulibaly have figured out how to work together, and it’s finally resulted in some low scoring games and clean sheets. This is more likely due to Williams as the common denominator, but a rising tide lifts all boats. It must be said that Julian Araujo has also looked better and better after a stretch of some really poor games.
2 PPG and third place in the West is nothing to sniff at.
- Derrick Williams/Séga Coulibaly - nothing to write here on the defensive side except “good job”. Which is amazing. Williams also set up Dejan on the winning goal. Combined Men of the Match
- Dejan Joveljić - took advantage of his opportunity with a great finish after a layup from Williams. His first Galaxy goal of the year couldn’t have come at a better time. Great celebration too. Just missed the target on a lob to end the game. Could this guy get some more playing time, please?
- Raheem Edwards - good headed clearance in the 5th minute. Tracked back and took the ball off of Nashville’s toe in the 16th minute.
- Mark Delgado - 3 key passes!
- Rayan Raveloson - great run set up a chance in the 10th minute. Two clearances off a dangerous free kick in the 18th minute.
- Jonathan Bond - nice falling down save in the 39th minute after Coulibaly was caught upfield. Was not tested too often.
- Julian Araujo - good pacy interception of Sapong in the 13th minute. Got upfield more often this game as well.
- Samuel Grandsir - set up Cabral’s shot in the 10th minute with a lovely short pass. Good quick run to end the half but his shot was blocked.
- Chicharito - sent in a squared ball across goal that begged to be scored in the 61st minute, but Cabral missed. Nice run and shot in the 81st minute, but was saved. Earned a dumb yellow card to end the game.
- Efraín Álvarez - killed a promising counter in the 37th minute with the wrong pass. Hit the post with a curling shot to start the second half.
- Douglas Costa - free kick was just wide in the 67th minute. He seemed slightly off target on several passes.
- Kévin Cabral - had a shot deflected just side in the 10th minute. Should have sent in Grandsir rather than forcing the ball to Chicharito in the 30th minute. Should have done better on Chicharito’s squared pass in the 61st minute. Tracked back on an Edwards miss in the 69th minute.
- Sacha Kljestan - late sub.
- Two weeks in a row with no one in this category. Yes, even Cabral - he did generate chances, just didn’t finish them.
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