Missed opportunities leave LAFC with draw against FC Dallas

player hangs his head in frustration
LAFC's Diego Rossi hangs his head after missing a shot against FC Dallas.
LAFC's Diego Rossi hangs his head after missing a shot against FC Dallas.

LAFC’s Carlos Vela did everything he needed to do to score the game-winning goal in stoppage time, except for putting the ball in the back of the net.

Vela received the pass deep inside the penalty box, controlled it with precision footwork, bodied the defender out of the way, and had a clear shot on goal.  But the ball skipped just inches outside the goal post, leaving an exasperated Vela with his face buried in his jersey in frustration.

soccer players dribbles ball

LAFC’s Carlos Vela controls the ball before shooting on goal in stoppage time during Saturday’s game against FC Dallas.

The missed goal chance exemplified the other lost opportunities LAFC players had throughout the game Saturday against FC Dallas, preventing the team from winning its second consecutive game its new Banc of California Stadium. Diego Rossi, Omar Gaber, Latif Blessing and Mark-Anthony Kaye each had as good, or even better, chances to score throughout the game.

Instead, LAFC settled for a 1-1 draw. It’s also the first tie in the history of the expansion team, which now has a 5-2-1 record.

The home team opened the scoring in the ninth minute when Steven Beitashour slotted the ball past Dallas past goalkeeper Jimmy Maurer.

Dallas tied the game in the 55th minute when  Maximiliano Urruti drove the ball from outside the box into the corner of the net. Despite the even score, LAFC by far had the greater number of scoring opportunities. The tie ended Dallas’ three-game losing streak and LAFC’s two-game winning streak.

Latif Blessing embraces Steven Beitashour after Beitashour scored the opening goal on Saturday against FC Dallas.

“It’s easy to say that the problem was that we didn’t score goals,” Vela told Pro Soccer USA. “We had a lot of chances to finish the game. Football is really quick. We lost two points at home. I think this team played really well and tried to be an attacking team and has scored goals. It’s the way we want to play. We are doing well and … we’ll have another chance on Wednesday.”

LAFC next plays Wednesday at home against Minnesota United FC. The team plays next Sunday against against New York City FC, also at Banc of California Stadium.

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