Rossi brace lifts LAFC as dream debut continues

Los Angeles (AFP) – Diego Rossi scored twice as Los Angeles FC’s dream start to their inaugural Major League Soccer season continued with a 5-1 romp at Real Salt Lake on Saturday.

Rossi scored twice and played a key role in LAFC’s other three goals as the visitors scored five unanswered goals to notch their second wins in as many matches.

Coach Bob Bradley said 20-year-old Uruguayan Rossi was a major factor in the expansion club’s quick success.

“Diego is such a good player to have on the field, to work with,” Bradley said. “He’s deceptive. He’s fast. Today again he was coming from different positions, getting in on the attack.

“He’s also unselfish on his end. Late in the game he sees the better opportunity to play one across. Guys are trying to reward each other and that is positive.”

Latif Blessing, Benny Feilhaber and Carlos Vela also scored for LAFC, who roared back after Joao Plata briefly put Real Salt Lake ahead when he slotted in a rebound of a saved penalty.

“We had a lot of chances today,” Bradley said. “You see players are unselfish and want to make the right decisions.”

Now the fledgling club will have to find a way to stay sharp as they wait for their much anticipated first clash with the Los Angeles Galaxy.

With an odd number of teams in MLS this season, not every team will play every weekend.

“We would like to play next weekend because we have momentum going forward, but it’s one of those things where we’re still an expansion team and we’re getting comfortable playing with each other,” LAFC’s Steven Beitashour said.

Elsewhere in the second weekend of the season, the Vancouver Whitecaps continued their strong start with a 2-1 victory at the Houston Dynamo, with the help of a milestone goal from Kei Kamara.

Kamara’s penalty in the 28th minute made him the 10th player to score 100 MLS goals.

He converted after being brought down by Philippe Senderos in the box and now has two goals in two games this season.

The Dynamo pulled level 11 minutes later with a deflected shot from Alberth Elis, but Brek Shea grabbed the game-winner in the 49th minute taking advantage of Kamara’s pass up the left and breaking free to beat Chris Seitz.

It was a high-scoring affair in Chicago, where Sporting Kansas City’s Felipe Gutierrez scored the match-winner in the 86th minute, his second goal of a 4-3 victory over the Fire.

Gutierrez had given Sporting the lead in the ninth and Johnny Russell made it 2-0 in the 44th.

But the Fire scored three straight in the space of 12 minutes in the second half as Bastian Schweinsteiger set up Aleksandar Katai and Nemanja Nikolic struck twice to make it 3-2 for the hosts.

Jimmy Medranda grabbed an equalizer before Gutierrez capped the scoring with a left-footed shot from close range.

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