El Tráfico Can Redefine the MLS Season for Los Angeles Teams

LAFC and Galaxy promise a spectacle at the Rose Bowl
San Jose Earthquakes v Los Angeles Football Club
San Jose Earthquakes v Los Angeles Football Club / Ronald Martinez/GettyImages

When the ball starts rolling at the Rose Bowl this Thursday night, it won't just be another game in MLS. It's the meeting of giants, a true El Tráfico that could redefine the entire 2024 season. The rivalry between LAFC and Galaxy has always been intense, but this time, the stakes are even higher. Both teams are at the top of the Western Conference, playing soccer that many consider the best in the league right now.

LAFC comes in unbeaten in nine games, a streak that has made many tip their hats. The team’s main star, Denis Bouanga, the current MLS Golden Boot champion, boasts 13 goals and 9 assists. He's the guy who makes the difference, always ready to shake the nets and create incredible plays. But Bouanga isn't alone. Polish winger Mateusz Bogusz is having the best year of his career, with 12 goals and 5 assists, including two consecutive multi-goal games.

Follow MLS Multiplex on X (Twitter).

And as if that wasn't enough, LAFC is about to add another star to their lineup. None other than Olivier Giroud, the legendary French striker, will join the club when the Secondary Transfer Window opens on July 18. The expectation is that Giroud will bring even more experience and quality to the attack, turning LAFC into a true goal machine. With Giroud at the helm, opposing defenses will have to work hard to hold back the team's offensive momentum.

The Galaxy isn't far behind. The team comes in with four consecutive victories, with three shutouts. The defense has been solid, but it’s in the attack that the Galaxy shines. Much of this is due to the return of Riqui Puig, the midfield maestro. After recovering from an injury, Puig came back strong over the weekend, leading the Galaxy to a 3-0 victory in the Cali Clásico against the San Jose Earthquakes. His vision and ability to create plays are a true spectacle.

Riqui Puig, by the way, has extra motivation for this El Tráfico. Preseason predictions weren’t very optimistic for the Galaxy, and he seems determined to prove everyone wrong. Every pass, every dribble, is an answer to the critics. And there's no better stage to silence the pessimists than a game against the arch-rival.

This El Tráfico has all the ingredients to be epic. On one side, a relentless LAFC, with an unbeaten streak and heavyweight reinforcements. On the other, a Galaxy determined to show they can go head-to-head with any opponent, guided by a Riqui Puig seeking redemption.

And like any good classic, this El Tráfico promises surprises. Will Bouanga and Bogusz continue their impressive goal streaks? Or will Riqui Puig orchestrate a memorable victory for the Galaxy? One thing's for sure: anyone watching this game won't regret it.