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Minnesota United 1, Los Angeles Football Club 1 | 2019 MLS Match Recap

A meeting of the top two teams in the Western Conference ended in a 1-1 draw Sunday night at Allianz Field, as Minnesota United and LAFC split the points.

The opener arrived in the 70th minute via Carlos Vela, who curled him a left-footed strike to the far corner after Brian Rodriguez led a counter attack. The Designated Player's finish gave him 31 goals on the year, tying Josef Martinez’s single-season goals record in MLS.

The 1-0 lead didn’t last long for the Supporters’ Shield winners, as nobody tracked Michael Boxall on a deep Jan Gregus free kick in the 75th minute. Boxall was kept on by LAFC left back Diego Palacios, and the center back flicked home a header to make it 1-1.

While LAFC dominated possession (66.7-33.3 percent) and total passes (673-325), the Loons had numerous chances to snatch three points via Angelo Rodriguez. The second-half substitute landed four of his five shots on target, though was robbed by goalkeeper Pablo Sisniega on multiple occasions.

LAFC could have also found a winner, only for Rodriguez to launch a shot off the crossbar in the 74th minute. He also struck woodwork in the 34th minute on a delicate chip from close range.

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Goals

  • 70' – LAFC – Carlos Vela | WATCH
  • 75' – MIN – Michael Boxall | WATCH

Three Things

  • THE BIG PICTURE: LAFC are now two points shy of the single-season points record, as they’re on 69 heading into Decision Day presented by AT&T next Sunday. They’ll need three points against the Colorado Rapids to surpass the New York Red Bulls, who reached 71 in 2018. For Minnesota, they’re in a good spot to clinch a home playoff game and end the regular season with a 1-0-1 record against the league's best. 
  • MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Carlos Vela drifted wide right in the 70th minute, only to find a pocket of space that resulted in his 31st goal of the year. He’s now one strike away from breaking Josef Martinez’s single-season record and remains atop the Golden Boot presented by Audi race. However, LA Galaxy striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic is now on 29 for the year and should make next weekend interesting.
  • MAN OF THE MATCH: We’re going with LAFC goalkeeper Pablo Sisniega here, as he robbed Angelo Rodriguez several times. The pick of the bunch came in the 57th minute, when the Mexican’s arm denied Minnesota’s Designated Player. 

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