On Tuesday night, LAFC travelled to face Club Leon in the first leg of their Round of 16 CCL tie. Here are three things we learned from the 2-0 defeat.
Well, it was same old, same old for Major League Soccer teams in the CONCACAF Champions League. Los Angeles FC are aguably the most talented team in league history, even with their recent defensive reshuffle. But they came up against a superb Club Leon, who handled their business expertly.
It was a tactical masterclass from the Liga MX side, who held LAFC’s threatening triumvirate at arm’s legnth and countered with ferocious speed and accuracy, taking advantage of the poor decision-making and sloppy passing of their visitors.
Here are three things we learned from LAFC’s 2-0 defeat.
3. Decisions, decisions, decisions
The attacking decision-making of Los Angeles FC was atrocious. And that is being kind. From forcing passes when the opening was not there to slowing down attacks when the chance to attack an exposed Leon defence, consistently, LAFC players made the wrong decisions, time and time again.
Admittedly, the movement off the ball was largely nonexistent and the combination play was poor, the attacking players often too spread out to properly link up with one another. But the decision-maker of the passer was almost always wrong. And there is no one exempt from criticism.
Even the imperious Carlos Vela made the wrong decision time and again, taking on a speculative shot or holding onto the ball too long instead of releasing a simple pass and circulating the plat quickly. Latif Blessing’s distribution was poor, Mark-Anthony Kaye suffered a nightmarish display, while the full-backs offered nothing offensively, especially Tristan Blackmon, who’s passing was amateurish at best. The LAFC decision-making was horrible, and it cannot always be chalked down to preseason.