Austin FC came home to LAFC and snatched all three points to move into first place in the West, ousting Carlos Vela’s side in Wednesday night’s game at Banc of California Stadium. With a goal from Norway’s Ruben Gabrielsen and another from Uruguay’s Diego Fagúndez, Austin FC won 2-1 and is now in first place with 23 units, the same as LAFC, but with a better goal difference.
The first goal of the match was due to a defensive distraction by LAFC when the Ecuadorian Diego Palacios could not reject the ball well and the ball fell at the feet of the Colombian Jhojan Valencia, who finished off but the ball found his teammate Gabrielsen, whose shot to the Maxime Crépeau’s right post made it 1-0 for the Texans in the 13th minute.
Austin FC had another clear opportunity when Fagúndez sent his goalless shot over the top of the goal.
Visiting goalkeeper Brad Stuver saved at least two clear chances in the first half and more in the second half.
In the second half, LAFC pressed but could not score. The one who did manage to score was Fagúndez, who escaped after beating the backs of the LAFC defenses and scored the 2-0 in the 80th minute.
Shortly after, Vela received a foul inside the area and the Mexican executed the penalty to close the gap.
In the final minutes, the referee of the match reviewed for several minutes a play in which Palacios seemed to be brought down inside the area, but the official finally declared that there was no foul.
Latiff Blessing had to leave in the first half due to injury, while Uruguayan Brian Rodríguez made his return after being injured in the last derby against the Galaxy on April 9.
LAFC had just lost 2-0 on their visit to the Rapids in Colorado, accumulating their second loss in a row. The Gold and Black will face the Galaxy on Wednesday, May 27, against the Galaxy in Carson in the quarterfinals of the US Open Cup.
Austin had just lost 2-1 in their visit to Real Salt Lake at Rio Tinto Stadium.