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May 19, 2023 11:41 pm

LAFC face Quakes in bid to avenge lone loss of season

Los Angeles FC and the San Jose Earthquakes met on May 6 in Santa Clara, Calif., a 2-1 San Jose win in front of more than 45,000 fans.

Two weeks later comes the rematch, Saturday night in Los Angeles, where the home side is undefeated in five matches and sits in second place in Major League Soccer’s Western Conference.

LAFC (6-1-4, 22 points) have four wins and a draw at home. Two weeks ago, they took their only loss of the season, tied for the fewest in all of MLS.

San Jose (5-4-3, 18 points) is playing a Los Angeles-area team for the third straight weekend after taking a 2-1 loss against the host Los Angeles Galaxy on Sunday. The Earthquakes sit in fifth place in the West.

San Jose has six wins in the past nine meetings with LAFC. While the Earthquakes lost the teams’ first five all-time matchups, San Jose’s six wins are tied for the most any opponent has vs. Los Angeles FC.

LAFC just played on Wednesday, a 1-1 home draw against Sporting Kansas City. The hosts took a 1-0 lead on Denis Bouanga’s league-leading 10th goal of the season in the 13th minute, but SKC pulled level seven minutes later and LAFC had a goal disallowed for offside in the 85th minute.

Bouanga has scored in four consecutive league matches.

“We’re happy with the performance the other night, came up a bit short on the scoreline,” LAFC coach Steve Cherundolo said. “We will also look to improve in the areas we were not great in San Jose.”

Cristian Espinoza leads San Jose with eight goals and has three assists in 12 matches. Espinoza had both goals in the win over LAFC at the home of San Francisco 49ers on May 6.

“We have a lot of faith in ourselves and in this group against anybody,” Earthquakes coach Luchi Gonzalez said. “I know away, we haven’t gotten the points we would like, but we’ve competed very well.”

–Field Level Media

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