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Jun 18, 2024 8:27 pm

LAFC still soaring ahead of meeting with stumbling Austin FC

denis bouanga

Los Angeles FC will travel to Austin FC on Wednesday for a clash between Western Conference teams heading in opposite directions.

LAFC (10-4-3, 33 points) are on a roll, winning eight straight matches over all competitions and six consecutive league matches, including a 3-1 decision at Orlando City on Saturday that propelled them to second place in the West.

Denis Bouanga had two goals and Mateusz Bogusz produced the match-winning tally in the 80th minute. LAFC saw their five-match stretch without conceding a goal come to an end, but they still dominated the home side to win their third straight road match.

“Winning is contagious, winning is important,” Los Angeles coach Steve Cherundolo said after the victory over Orlando. “Winning away from home is a lot of fun. Certainly wasn’t our prettiest game, but credit to Orlando. … We had solutions at times, but not all the time and had to absorb a lot of pressure.”

Austin (6-7-5, 23 points) is skidding ahead of its first home match in three weeks, losing three straight and going winless in its past four. The Verde’s most recent outing was a 2-0 loss in Colorado on Saturday in which they produced only one shot on target.

Key midfielder Dani Pereira and defender Julio Cascante will not be with the team on Wednesday, as they are training for Copa America with Venezuela and Costa Rica, respectively.

Leading scorer and playmaker Sebastian Driussi returned for Austin on Saturday after a groin injury kept him out of a 5-1 loss to Real Salt Lake on June 1, but his effectiveness on such a short turnaround will be a situation to watch for the Verde.

“The players that aren’t here, aren’t here,” Austin coach Josh Wolff said. “We know who they are and the value they bring, and we’ve got to go with who we have and take every opportunity we can to maximize points.”

LAFC lead the all-time series between the sides 6-2-0 and captured both meetings last season while outscoring the Verde 7-2.

–Field Level Media

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