Following a discouraging loss to the Colorado Rapids just four days ago at home, LA Galaxy team captain, Javier ‘Chicharito’ Hernandez called out his teammates effort and passion for the crest.
“You don’t need to suffer. You need to realize that its painful. You don’t realize that it’s painful? And you don’t care about this club? Then you shouldn’t be here,” Hernandez said Saturday following the loss.
On Wednesday, his teammates responded with arguably the club’s best performance of the year in a 3-1 victory over current MLS Western Conference leaders, the Seattle Sounders, to move on to the U.S. Open Cup Round of 16.
From the opening whistle, the Galaxy played with a much higher sense of urgency than previously seen from the club through the first 10 games of the MLS Season.
Julian Aude opened up the scoring for LA in the third minute, the first goal for the 19-year old Argentine national since joining the team in March, a screamer from outside of the 18-yard box.
Galaxy’s backline would bend, but not break for the remainder of the first half thanks in part to key saves by Jonathan Bond, who made his return to the lineup from a shoulder injury, which kept the score at 1-0 heading into the break.
The second half would see a relatively quiet start until both teams made a pair of substitutions in the 65th with Memo Rodriguez entering for Gino Vivi while Dejan Joveljic replaced Hernandez.
Rodriguez would make his presence felt almost immediately, scoring in the 66th minute to extend the lead and make the score 2-0. The goal was Rodriguez’s first for the Galaxy since signing with the club in January.
Seattle wouldn’t take very long to respond as Paul Rothrock would get the Sounders on the board two minutes later to make the score 2-1 in the 68th.
Despite not having much experience protecting a lead in late-game scenarios this season, Galaxy would hold on after adding a late goal. Rodriguez would score his second in the 84th, earning his first brace with LA and putting the game out of reach, 3-1.
Next, the Galaxy will find out their opponents in the next round of the Open Cup during the Round of 16 draw tomorrow. LA will return to MLS play Saturday when they host the California Clásico against the San Jose Earthquakes on Sunday.