MLS expert Luke Beaumont (@_LukeBeaumont) gives his take on Thursday night's Los Angeles derby.
Los Angeles FC v LA Galaxy | Friday 27th July 2018, 03:30 | Sky Sports
There’s midweek Major League Soccer action on Thursday night, and the standout game is LAFC vs LA Galaxy in the second ‘El Tráfico’ derby of the season, and it’s set to be a cracker.
The downside for British fans of the American league is that the game kicks off at 3:30am on Friday morning. It’s fair to say there won’t be many staying up, but if you have to opportunity, I would recommend it.
These two sides provide plenty of goals and they both boast in-form strikers. LAFC have Adama Diomande who signed from Hull in May, and LA Galaxy have Zlatan Ibrahimovic – you might have heard of him.
Diomande has had an instant impact for LAFC. The striker has scored nine goals in nine games since Bob Bradley brought him to the club from England.
Zlatan has also been in the goals since he made the move Stateside, scoring 12 goals in 15 appearances so far for the Galaxy. He has hit a fine run of form, scoring in five of his last six MLS appearances.
He also scored twice, including the winning goal, when the two LA sides met earlier in the season.
Last time these sides met…
The teams have only met once before, given that this is LAFC’s inaugural season in Major League Soccer. The first meeting didn’t disappoint, and it provided fireworks.
LAFC had a dream start, going 3-0 up away from home before a late Ibrahimovic show turned the game round and into a 4-3 win for LA Galaxy on his debut.
He didn’t even start the game, so his late heroics came from the bench. The equaliser was a 40-yard volley which ended up going viral. He also went on to head in the winner.
Last time out
LAFC’s last outing was a disappointing 5-1 loss against Minnesota United, however, it was clear from the team sheet that manager Bradley had one eye on tonight’s LA derby.
He opted to give Diomande a break by naming him as a substitute, whereas talisman Carlos Vela didn’t travel.
The Galaxy are in fine form, having lost only once in their last 10 games. They also aren’t having a hard time finding the net as they’ve scored 15 goals in their last five, with all those fixtures securing Over 3.5 Goals.
Goals a guarantee
I am prepared to go out on a limb and almost guarantee there will be a feast of goals during this game. There’s just too many ingredients for it not to happen and I am expecting a thriller, just like it was back in March.
Therefore, I'll be backing Zlatan to score (10/11 William Hill), another Over 3.5 Goals thriller at evens (William Hill), and I'll be chucking a dart at the attractive 6/1 on Both Teams To Score In Both Halves with Bet365.
Los Angeles FC v LA Galaxy – Zlatan Ibrahimovic to score at anytime (10/11 William Hill)
Los Angeles FC v LA Galaxy – Over 3.5 Goals (1/1 William Hill)
Los Angeles FC v LA Galaxy – Both Teams To Score In Both Halves (6/1 Bet365)