Chiellini, Bale get LAFC home debuts in 2-1 win over Seattle

by | Jul 30, 2022 | Sports

LOS ANGELES — Kwadwo Opoku and Carlos Vela scored in the first half, and Los Angeles FC beat the Seattle Sounders 2-1 Friday night in the home debuts of European superstars Giorgio Chiellini and Gareth Bale.Major League Soccer-leading LAFC (15-4-3) earned its season-best fourth consecutive victory and moved seven points clear of Austin atop the Western Conference during its longest winning streak since 2019. LAFC is also six points ahead Philadelphia in the race for the Supporters’ Shield.“It was important to stay on top of the league, to send a message to us and the other teams that we’re going to continue to win,” Chiellini said. “The winning mentality is growing up in this team.”Seattle scored on an early own-goal by LAFC, but still dropped to 0-5-1 at Banc of California Stadium during the regular season. The Sounders won the 2019 Western Conference final here, and LAFC’s new stars already realize the importance of beating a perennial MLS contender.“I understand that maybe after the Galaxy, (Seattle) is the most vital team in the MLS, so we knew it would be difficult,” Chiellini said.Chiellini started and played 71 minutes in his home debut, while Bale came on as a substitute in the 63rd minute of both players’ third match overall with their new club. The duo’s moves to LAFC this summer turned a team that was already atop the MLS table into a potential powerhouse for …

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