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Los Angeles FC thrashed New York Red Bulls 6-1 in a pre-season fixture; however, this is the first time they meet in the league.
Both sides are doing well in the league, but the home side will go in as the favorites to win this weekend. The two sides have met just twice in the league in history. Both have one win each, with the Red Bulls winning the meeting in 2018, while LAFC won the clash in 2019.
In the 2018 meeting, Daniel Royer handed New York Red Bulls the lead towards the end of the first half with a goal in the 39th minute. They went into the break with the lead, but were quickly pulled back level after the restart.
Diego Rossi scored 8 minutes after the second half began, and the game was thrown wide open. Both sides were keen on getting the win, but it was the team from New York who had the final laugh. Daniel Royer got his second of the game in the 80th minute, and that was enough to see them pick up all three points.
LAFC had to wait a year until they got their revenge, and it was a sweet one. Jordan Harvey and Latif Blessing gave the home side a 2-0 advantage in the 25th minute, but Cristian Cásseres Jr. and Brian White made it level before halftime for the Red Bulls. Carlos Vela and Eddie Segura scored in the second half for LAFC, and this time, the New York side had no response as fell to a 4-2 loss.
The two sides met in the pre-season earlier this year, and LAFC had a field day. Brian Rodríguez scored twice, with Carlos Vela, Mamadou Fall, and Kwadwo Opoku adding one each to seal a 6-1 win after Patryk Klimala scored the opening goal of the match for the New York Red Bulls.
Los Angeles FC are on top of the table right now despite a slip in form. They have collected 30 points from their 15 matches, with nine wins and three draws so far. LAFC made a great start to the league this season and picked up 23 points from 10 matches. They had lost just once and drawn twice in those games, and that was enough to make them early title favorites.
However, in the last five matches, Los Angeles FC have picked up just seven points. They lost to Colorado Rapids away from home despite dominating the possession. LAFC had 62 percent of the ball but still managed just two shots on target. The Rapids, on the other hand, managed to get 14 shots, six on target, and scored twice.
The loss was followed by another one when LAFC hosted Austin FC. The goals from Ruben Gabrielsen and Diego Fagúndez were too much for LAFC to come back from despite Carlos Vela pulling one goal back in the 86th minute. The loss was just their third, and they have managed to bounce back well.
LAFC traveled to Columbus Crew next gameweek but needed to wait until the second half to get into the lead. Carlos Vela and José Cifuentes scored the goals as the table-toppers got back to winning ways. While they got the win again in the league, they got knocked out of the US Open Cup at the hands of the LA Galaxy. The 3-1 loss in the El Trafico saw them get knocked out of the tournament.
San Jose Earthquakes made them work hard in the next league game, but the table-toppers managed to get a 3-2 win. The first four goals of the match were scored in the first half, with both sides getting two each. Brian Rodríguez scored two minutes into the second half, which turned out to be the winner for the home side. LAFC could not make it three wins in a row, as they drew with Seattle Sounders in the last gameweek.
Diego Palacios, Julian Gaines, and Erik Duenas are ruled out of the next game.
New York Red Bulls have done well so far this season, with 26 points from their 16 games. They have lost just four times while winning seven games and drawing five.
After a winless pre-season, not many expected NYRB to do well at the start of the season. However, they managed to win their opening two matches and start on the right note. They did lose to Minnesota United and CF Montreal in the next four matches but went on a six-match unbeaten run after that defeat. They drew four of those six matches and were unable to do anything special to get the games going their way.
Their form has taken a turn for the worse as they have picked up just seven points in the last five matches, just like their opponents this weekend, LAFC. After their draw against Philadelphia Union in game week 11, they went on to draw against Chicago Fire as well. The highly entertaining 3-3 draw saw both sides take the lead at one point before an exciting end. Xherdan Shaqiri made it 3-2 in favor of the Chicago Fire in the 89th minute before Patryk Klimala scored the equalizer for the home side in the 91st.
The late draw did not lift their confidence as they went on to lose their next match. Inter Miami, who were not in good form, defeated them 2-0, and that saw the confidence crumble. Luckily they got a break from the league and played in the US Open Cup next and that helped them a little. NYRB defeated Charlotte 3-1 in the tournament and managed to replicate the performance in the league against DC United. They defeated the side from Texas 4-1 and ended their winless streak.
However, Charlotte got their revenge on NYRB and defeated them in the league. Benjamin Bender and Derrick Jones scored for the newcomers in the injury time of both halves to seal a 2-0 win for the home side.
Lewis Morgan struck early in the next match for NYRB and that saw them gain some confidence again.
They did not dominate possession but managed to get 14 shots away, but only 4 were on target. Those four shots were enough to see them pick up a 2-0 win, with Luquinhas scoring the second goal of the game in the second half.
Patryk Klimala, Serge Ngoma, Lucas Monzon, and Andres Reyes are ruled out against LAFC this weekend.
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|Teams||Los Angeles FC vs New York Red Bulls|
|Location||Banc of California Stadium|
|Time||Sunday, June 26 at 3pm EST|
|How to watch||ABC, ESPN Deportes|
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Varun is a web journalist who has been writing on sports for 13 years. He took a shine for the MLS during the 2021 season and has been following it and writing about it since, alongside his work involving the English Premier League, La Liga, and the Serie A. He is deeply interested in soccer analytics and strategy and has aspirations to move into coaching at some point. Email: [email protected]More info on Varun Shetty
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