The MLS game of the week is crucial matchup for two teams looking to move up in the Western Conference standings. FC Dallas sits in seventh place in the Western Conference with 36 points, while the Galaxy are in fifth place with 37 points, but both teams are a three-point victory away from moving up to second in what is a really tight playoff race.
FC Dallas at Los Angeles Galaxy, 10:30 p.m. ET
The Galaxy has lost three matches in a row and four of their last five. The club enters off a 2-1 loss to D.C. United on Sunday night in and had to travel across the country to prepare on short rest.
— Major League Soccer (@MLS) August 12, 2019
The Galaxy’s issue this season has been the inability of players other than Zlatan Ibrahimović to score goals. Ibrahimović is one of the league’s most prolific scorers, with 16 so far this season, and he has dazzled throughout the year, but no other Galaxy player has more than three goals. Enter Cristian Pavón, the 23-year-old Argentine who joined the Galaxy last week on loan from Boca Juniors.
— CONMEBOL Libertadores (@TheLibertadores) August 8, 2019
Pavón made his debut against D.C. United and now gets his first run in front of the home fans. He was brought in to create plays and score goals, and the Galaxy will need him to do that to beat Dallas.
FC Dallas has had up-and-down form of late, with a 2-2-1 record in its last five matches. Dallas is hovering just above the playoff line, but has a great opportunity to leap toward the top of the Western Conference. FC Dallas doesn’t have one goalscorer or playmaker who it relies on to get results. Instead Dallas employs a more balanced attack. Jesus Ferreira and Dominique Badji lead the team in goals with six apiece, while Ryan Hollingshead is just behind them with four.
— Major League Soccer (@MLS) August 11, 2019
Michael Barrios has been the main playmaker for the Toros, with assists on 11 goals this season. Paxton Pomykal has also been a wonder for Dallas this season, with five assists and three goals, and the attack came together last weekend in a 5-3 victory against Minnesota United. Dallas defeated the Galaxy in their last matchup, a 2-0 home victory in March. The Toros will hope to prevent Ibrahimović from taking over the game and escape Los Angeles with a victory.
The Galaxy has played poor as of late, but adding Pavón to the attack will certainly give a boost in front of the home crowd. The Galaxy lineup should return to full strength, and that will be a welcome sight for manager Guillermo Barros Schelotto. Ibrahimović scores two goals, one off a Pavón assist, and the Galaxy squeaks by with a 2-1 win (+850).