An 89th minute go-ahead goal from Ryan Gauld gave the Vancouver Whitecaps an emotional 2-1 victory over LAFC at BC Place Saturday evening.
Gauld's goal gave the Whitecaps their first win at BC Place with fans in attendance in over 539 days. The Scottish international came off the bench for the fourth straight game, scoring his first as a Whitecap and shoving a dagger into the hearts of LAFC. With the win, the Whitecaps are now just three points outside of the MLS Western Conference playoff places and improve their unbeaten run to eight matches.
LAFC's Diego Rossi put the away side up 1-0 from the penalty spot right before the halftime break. The Uruguayan was brought down on the edge of the box and after a Video Review, referee Alex Chilowicz pointed to the spot, much to the dismay of the home fans, who felt it was a soft foul. Earlier in the first half, though, LAFC suffered a blow when Carlos Vela was forced to leave the pitch with an apparent injury.
In an attempt to change the course of the match at halftime, Whitecaps head coach Marc Dos Santos brought on Gauld, whose introduction immediately changed things for the hosts. Just two minutes in, Gauld found himself threatening inside the LAFC box.
The Whitecaps soon got themselves an equalizing goal through striker Brian White in the 60th minute, with his effort going in off the crossbar. it initially appeared that the ball had not crossed the line, so Gauld pounced on the rebound to make sure, but after a Video Review, the goal was given to White for the initial strike.
Late heroics from Gauld, however, stole the show. The Scot was fed a delicious cross from Ryan Raposo and after carefully timing his leap, he headed home into the top right corner of the net, scoring the game-winner.
- 45+2' - LAFC - Diego Rossi (PK)
- 60' - VAN - Brian White
- 89' - VAN - Ryan Gauld
- THE BIG PICTURE: LAFC's winless streak continues, with Bob Bradley's side unable to find three points over their past seven matches. They allowed two unanswered second half goals and came away with nothing, despite a plethora of first-half opportunities. For Vancouver, this is a dream result. They earned three points in their return to BC Place and both of their summer transfer window signings found the back of the net. They’ve also found themselves in fantastic form and are slowly creeping up the standings in the MLS Western Conference.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Gauld’s go-ahead winner in the 89th minute. It’s a picture-perfect cross from Raposo and a perfectly placed header.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Ryan Gauld. The newest Designated Player for the Whitecaps scored his first goal in MLS and it came at the most opportune moment possible. His second half cameo completely changed the course of the game and brought life into the Vancouver attack.
LAFC: Heineken Rivalry Week match: Friday, August 27 at Galaxy 4:00pm PT (FOX, FOX Deportes)