Galaxy travel to Toronto seeking second-straight road win

The Los Angeles Galaxy travel to Toronto after winning against the New England Revolution

PREVIEW – The Los Angeles Galaxy (11-11-4, 37 points) started their two-game road trip in fantastic fashion after stealing a 2-1 away victory against the New England Revolution. Now, the Galaxy travel to Toronto looking for their second-straight road win.

LA knows that every point is vital and has spoken about how every match is a “final,” in the quest to return to the playoffs. The Galaxy travel to Toronto to complete the road swing Wednesday at 4:30 PT (7:30 ET) against another team playing for their playoff lives, Toronto FC.

Galaxy travel to Toronto seeking a second-straight road win

Any good feeling, Los Angeles Head Coach Greg Vanney might have gotten from reuniting with the team where he won the treble, will be dampened. If anything, Vanney and former Toronto FC players Mark Delgado, Raheem Edwards, and Victor Vazquez will look to use the familiarity with the home side as an advantage. Can the Galaxy take two of two on the road? Neither team will want to give up the points that could be the difference between a postseason spot and a spot on the couch.


Unbeaten in three

With the Galaxy’s win over the Revs, the Galaxy is now unbeaten in their last three games, which included a win over the Vancouver Whitecaps FC (2-0-1). Los Angeles snapped a four-game winless streak on the road, winning for the first time since May 8, 2022, in a 1-0 win over Austin. The victory takes them back into seventh place and playoff contention.

They enter Wednesday’s match two points behind Real Salt Lake and Nashville and just six points behind fourth-place FC Dallas with three games in hand. They’ll try to win two straight matches for the first time since their 3-1 win at Portland and 2-1 home victory against LAFC in early April. LA has a good chance of doing so; the Galaxy is 5-1-1 in six matches played against Eastern Conference opponents this year, holding a 2-0-1 record on the road.

That Puig pass

The ball was exquisite. It traveled across 40 yards with perfect weight and in stride and ended up being the game-winning assist against the Revs. And it came off the boot of Riqui Puig, who was making his first start for the Galaxy.

The 23-year-old’s energy was infectious. Not only did he play the pass of the night (season?), but he finished the match with a team-high nine possessions won and three successful dribbles.

“He’s shifty, he’s quick, he gets on the other side of his guy,” Galaxy head coach Greg Vanney said. “And he just kept working defensively through the entire game. His first 90 minutes, not easy, in New England, after a long trip, on turf. Welcome to MLS, Riqui. That was a tough one, but he was excellent. Just brought class with the whole game.”

If Puig can replicate the energy, not to mention the vision, that he displayed against New England, the Galaxy can be successful against anybody in the league. If he and Javier “Chicharito” Hernández can get on the same wavelength consistently as they did for Galaxy’s second goal, watch out, MLS.

The little pea doing big things

With his assist to Daniel Aguirre, who scored his first goal for the Galaxy, Chicharito now has five MLS assists on the year to go with 12 goals.

His goal and assist against the Revs mean he’s scored a goal in four straight matches dating back to Aug. 6, racking up five goals and two assists in that time. It was just the third goal+assist match for the Galaxy captain. For his efforts, Chicharito was named to the MLS Team of the Week.

The Galaxy’s fortunes largely depend on the production they’ll get from Chicharito.


Italian Trio

Aside from a momentary blip last week when they drew 2-2 at home against New England on Wednesday and lost 2-1 away to Inter Miami CF on Saturday, Toronto’s been on a roll.

TFC has won four of its last seven, picking up 14 points, including three clean sheets in that time. And it’s all thanks to their Italian trio. Since their Major League Soccer debuts on July 23, Lorenzo Insigne and Federico Bernardeschi have almost single-handedly brought Toronto back into the playoff conversation. Toronto has picked up 14 points in that span on their production; Insigne (4g, 2a) and Bernardeschi (5g, 3a).

Both scored in Toronto’s 2-0 away win over Charlotte on Saturday, the third time in their seven starts together they’ve both done so. The duo joined Chicharito, being named to the MLS Team of the Week.

Add Domenico Criscito into the mix, and the Italian trio has been involved in 13 of TFC’s last 15 goals, including the last seven. Containing this trio will be key to the Galaxy’s hopes of getting maximum points on the road trip East.

Toronto is currently 10th in the Eastern Conference on 33 pts and are three points out of a playoff spot with six games left. The postseason, which once looked like a dream, is certainly reachable for TFC, and with Midfielders Mark-Anthony Kaye and fellow Canadian International Jonathan Osorio returning, the former-treble winners should be further bolstered.


On paper, this looks like another easy one. Toronto FC has only lost once in its history to the Galaxy at home, where LA hasn’t got a point since March 2013. With the way Toronto has been playing, combined with the Galaxy’s road troubles, a TFC win should be on the cards.

The key will be an early goal for the Galaxy. They are 10-1-2 when scoring the first match of the game, and the letdown against Seattle aside has shown they can close out games.

Unpredictable as ever, look for the Galaxy to overachieve again, steal a win, and ruin the reunion party.

Photo Credit: Los Angeles Galaxy