Wicked finish: LAFC earns another dramatic win thanks to late Zimmerman goal

In 2018, LAFC enjoyed the best season an MLS expansion team has ever had -- up until the playoffs.

Five months after being stunned by Real Salt Lake, 3-2, in the Knockout Round, LAFC gained a measure of revenge by beating RSL, 2-1, to remain unbeaten after four games in the 2019 season.

The unlikely hero was defender Walker Zimmerman, whose own goal (off his face) gave RSL the upset victory in the 2018 playoffs. He scored two minutes into stoppage time with a shot from outside the penalty area that deflected off Erik Holt, one of a record six RSL academy players who started, and curved away from RSL keeper Nick Rimando.

The win was the second in stoppage time for unbeaten LAFC (3-0-1). It also beat Sporting KC, 2-1, in their opener on Adams Diomande’s goal.

Zimmerman started both games for the USA in its winter friendlies and scored the second goal in the 3-0 win over Panama but wasn't picked for the March friendlies by Gregg Berhalter, who said he wanted to look at the three foreign-based defenders -- John Brooks, Matt Miazga and Omar Gonzalez -- he brought in to join Aaron Long.

The 6-foot-3 Zimmerman has scored 12 goals in his MLS career, but he is known for his ability in the air, not his feet.

“I want to be the guy where I have the ball in my hands the last second of the game," he said afterwards. "I love those moments. I love scoring goals, and I love competing.”

RSL, which was missing four starters who were suspended or on international duty, finished the game with 10 players after Justin Portillo was red carded for wiping out Diego Rossi just nine minutes into his MLS debut off the bench.
1 comment about "Wicked finish: LAFC earns another dramatic win thanks to late Zimmerman goal".
  1. Eric Jensen, March 24, 2019 at 12:02 p.m.

    went to the match w/ la familia last night. first time attending. great game, the atmosphere was outstanding, the supporters section provided a non-stop soccer soundtrack for the entire game and looked like the stadium was sold out. lafc is doing a lot of things right.

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