Joveljic and Pérez lead Galaxy past Chivas 2-0 at SoFi Stadium

INGLEWOOD, Calif. (AP) — Dejan Joveljic and Jonathan Pérez each scored, and the Los Angeles Galaxy beat Chivas de Guadalajara 2-0 in a friendly Wednesday night.

It was the first football match played at the SoFi Stadium, which will host World Cup matches in 2026, and served as a prelude to the League Cup competition between MLS and Liga MX clubs from the ‘next summer.

Domestic play will be paused for a month while all MLS and Liga MX teams participate in the tournament. The winner will automatically receive a spot in the CONCACAF Champions League Round of 16.

“I think now that the leagues, I think they’re closing and coming together a lot, and I think there’s a lot of respect between the two leagues and the clubs that now exist in both leagues, and so I see that the competition is taken seriously,” Galaxy coach Greg Vanney said. “I think the league, this league starting next year, is a good time.

Joveljic, a Serbian national team player, brought his left foot out to redirect an Efrain Alvarez corner into the first net in the 28th minute. With limited touch-space due to the on-field follow-up, Alvarez had no choice but to put a ball in motion, and Joveljic arrived at the near post past two Chivas defenders to put the lead in the lead. galaxy.

“Today it worked because he was an amazing cross,” Galaxy striker Javier “Chicharito” Hernández said. “You can see it, (Joveljic) just touch it. He didn’t even like hitting him, he just touched him.

Perez made it 2-0 in the 63rd minute with a well-taken shot from outside the penalty area that beat Raúl Rangel to the left of the goalkeeper.

“Jonny obviously steals the show with a superb goal. The kid is a special player,” Vanney said.

Hernández, who was born in Guadalajara and started his career at Chivas, almost put the Galaxy ahead in the opening seconds. He intercepted a bad back pass from Antonio Briseño after 15 seconds but was unable to fire before Rangel made a desperate sliding tackle.

Chivas had his own scoring chances early on, the most dangerous of which required Jonathan Klinsmann to make back-to-back reaction saves to prevent Miguel Ponce from close range in the 25th minute.

LAFC and Club América were scheduled to play in the last drink of the doubleheader.


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