Vela scores 2, sets up 2 as LAFC rout Whitecaps
Carlos Vela set up a pair of first-half goals off corner kicks, then added two scores of his own in the second half as Los Angeles FC spotted the visiting Vancouver Whitecaps one goal and then scored six straight for a 6-1 victory, their second win in four days.
Vela, the leading goal scorer in MLS, was more of a playmaker early. A corner kick in 35th minute set up an own goal by Vancouver’s Andy Rose, and another in the 41st minute led to a header near the far post from Adama Diomande.
Mark-Anthony Kaye added a goal in the opening minute of the second half for a 3-1 lead.
Vela added his league-leading 18th goal of the season in the 54th minute, with his 19th coming in the 70th minute on a header in front of the Whitecaps’ goal to give LAFC a 5-1 lead. Diego Rossi added to the blowout with a goal in the 72nd minute, his 10th.
LAFC (13-2-4, 43 points), the top team in MLS, are halfway through a grueling stretch featuring four games in 10 days, including a U.S. Open Cup game Wednesday.
LAFC have won consecutive games since a June 28 defeat at Colorado. The team’s only other defeat was April 17 at Vancouver. LAFC have 50 goals in 19 games this season.
The Whitecaps (4-8-8, 20 points) are winless over their last five matches, but do have three ties in that stretch.
Yordy Reyna gave the Whitecaps a 1-0 lead in the fifth minute with his fourth goal of the season. LAFC goalkeeper Pablo Sisniega came well off his line after a long pass from Jon Erice, with Reyna getting to the ball first and scoring into an abandoned goal.
LAFC dominated the run of play for most of the first half, but did not score until a bending Vela corner hit Rose, with the ball finding its way into the Whitecaps’ goal.
Just six minutes later, a nearly identical corner kick from Vela found the head of Diamonde, who slotted the ball inside the far post. It was Diomande’s fourth goal of the season with Vela recording his league-leading 12th assist. Kaye’s goal in the 46th minute was his fourth.
Vancouver’s Fredy Montero earned a red card in the 85th minute for a dangerous foul on Kaye.
REUTERS/Field Level Media