Zlatan Ibrahimovic made the difference for the LA Galaxy in their 1-0 road win over the Chicago Fire in week 7 of the 2018 MLS season. Ibrahimovic scored the game's only goal, heading the ball in a minute into first-half stoppage time. David Bingham kept the clean sheet for LA.
"Of course, Zlatan has an amazing talent that he was able to display today and he was, undoubtedly, decisive," Chicago coach Veljko Paunovic said. "The result shows that. But for us, the first half was not bad. For us, this is how we wanted to play to be able to get to the second half with options where we could execute a distinct game plan that we had to modify a bit. But we wanted to counterattack. We wanted to make the game difficult for them. We wanted to be very organized and it worked for us except for that one occasion and that was decisive."
Week 7 started with two games on Friday. Orlando CIty shutout Philadelphia 2-0 on the road. Dom Dwyer scored in the 38th with Christopher Mueller doubling the lead in the 45th. Joe Bendik kept the clean sheet.
LAFC picked up three points at BC Place, beating Vancouver 2-0. Carlos Vela scored in the 59th with Diego Rossi adding a goal in the 70th. Tyler Miller kept the clean sheet.
"Really strong response," LAFC coach Bob Bradley said. "We talk about getting better week to week. And we talk about it from the standpoint of our football and also just having a competitive edge and knowing how to win different kind of games. Today, I think a lot goes in that second category, because Vancouver is a difficult team to play against. So I thought our competitiveness, our concentration, those things were very good today."
On Saturday, the New York Red Bulls beat Montreal 3-1 at home. Bradley Wright-Phillips put the Red Bulls up in the 5th minute. Jeisson Vargas equalized for Montreal in the 33rd. Alejandro Gamarra put New York up for good in the 57th with Michael Murillo scoring in the 76th.
Colorado shutout Toronto 2-0 at home with Tim Howard keeping the clean sheet. Jack Price scored in the 2nd minute and Shkelzen Gashi converting a penalty in the 78th. Toronto rested their key players in advance of the Concacaf Champions League final series first-leg on Tuesday. Clint Irwin started in goal in place of Alex Bono who wasn't in the squad along with Seb Giovinco and Jozy Altidore. Michael Bradley was on the bench for Toronto.
“I was pleased with the work rate the guys put out there," Toronto coach Greg Vanney said. "Obviously it was a group of guys who came in, in a tough situation and put out a good effort, and we had some chances. A little bit tough that we gave up a goal in the first two minutes, we had some chances in the first-half and you now. The positives out of this is we had three players make their debuts for the first team and you know that was excellent. Obviously, staying healthy getting out of this was also a positive and a bonus, so that’s that.”
DC United played most of the second-half a man down but held on for the 1-0 shutout of Columbus. Playing at Navy Memorial Stadium, Ulises Segura put DC up in the 1st minute. Paul Arriola saw red in the 51st minute with Steve Clark keeping the clean sheet.
FC Dallas shutout New England 1-0 on the road. Jacori Hayes scored in the 76th minute with Jimmy Maurer making four saves for the clean sheet.
“I think Dallas came here for a point," Revs coach Brad Friedel said. "First and foremost, they don’t normally play with two big men up front to play long balls. They knew that we would press them. I know that they’ve been working on that in the week. They were playing for the counter attack. Later in the second half, they went to one striker, played a 4-5-1. So they came here with a certain approach."
Portland beat Minnesota 3-2 in their first home game of 2018 after stadium renovations. Alvas Powell scored for the Timbers in the 20th with Diego Valeri doubling the lead three minutes later. Darwin Quintero pulled a goal back for United in the 64th. Fanendo Adi made it 3-1 in the 74th. Portland gave up an own-goal in the 81st minute.
San Jose and Houston finished 2-2 at Avaya Stadium in a game that broke Chris Wondolowski's consecutive start streak for the Earthquakes. Magnus Eriksson put San Jose up in the 26th with Houston's Tomas Martinez equalizing in the 48th. Mauro Manotas put the Dynamo up in the 63rd with Jahmir Hyka equalizing in the 85th. Wondolowski subbed on in the 67th minute.
"It's one of those things, it's a part of the game," Wondolowski said. "We wanted to make a tactical change and add another guy in the midfield to try to possess it. It's something we've been trying to work on - building our possession into the final third. Coach talked to me about that. It's the role he asked me to play. Going forward I'll try and take that the best that I can."
On Sunday, Sporting KC and Seattle finished 2-2 at Children's Mercy Park. Sporting went up in the 34th from an Ilie Sanchez penalty. Will Bruin equalized for Seattle three minutes into first-half stoppage time. Christopher Roldan put the Sounders up in the 73rd with Graham Zusi equalizing five minutes later.
Week 7 ended at Mercedes Benz Stadium with Atlanta drawing 2-2 with NYCFC. Greg Garza scored for Atlanta in the 29th with David Villa equalizing from the penalty spot in the 38th. Chris McCann returned United's lead in the 56th with Alexander Ring equalizing in the 73rd.
“I think we can use everything from tonight because from my point of view it’s possible that this is the best game that our team has played since I’ve been here," Atlanta coach Tata Martinez said.
Photo by Robin Alam - ISIPhotos.com