Christian Ramirez’s brace helped lead LAFC past Real Salt Lake on Wednesday in the striker’s first start for his new club. His immediate impact is a welcome sight indeed.
The first start at LAFC for Christian Ramirez could not have gone any better. His brace was the difference in LAFC’s 2-0 win over Real Salt Lake and gave the California club their first win in Major League Soccer since July 7th.
Ramirez was brought in to do what he does best, poach for goals. He completed his first task with efficiency on Wednesday night and LAFC have to be happy with what they saw from their new striker.
Starting up front with Carlos Vela and Diego Rossi gave Ramirez his first opportunity to test the chemistry with his new teammates on the attack. It didn’t take long for Vela and Ramirez to link up. In the 13th minute, Vela produced a wonderful pass to assist on Ramirez’s opening goal, curling a lovely pass around the defender into a channel that split the center-backs, allowing Ramirez to take one touch to control the bouncing ball and another to prod home.
Only 17 minutes later, Ramirez found his second goal in his vintage style. A pass from Eduard Atuesta was perfectly placed to Ramirez who was placed right in front of goal, on the edge of the six-yard box, to deliver a punishing blow to Real Salt Lake early in the match. It was his movement prior to the pass that was so brilliant, darting to the near post and then drifting back to slip the attentions of the Real Salt Lake defence.
Wednesday’s performance was exactly what LAFC needed from Ramirez. They were struggling for results over the past month and their new signing delivered in a big way at home. With Adama Diomande slowing down in goal production, the need was definitely there for a second option on the roster.
Ironically, his brace on Wednesday was his second of the season, with his first multi-goal match of the season coming against LAFC in July in one of his final matches with Minnesota United.
Ramirez has the potential to become the outright starter instead of featuring as a player off the bench. We saw the chemistry he had up top working with Vela and Rossi, which had to be a big takeaway for Bob Bradley and the LAFC coaching staff. With such a performance in his first start for the club, one has to wonder if he will find his stride in L.A.
The move away from Minnesota might have been just what he needs to thrive. Ramirez has to know this could be his ticket into a national team selection and showing he can work with players such as Vela will help his case immensely.
At the moment, LAFC should give him as many opportunities as possible to see what kind of form he can produce. Come playoff time, he could very well be the starting striker. That might be equally beneficial for club and player.