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Drogba Goal Lifts Phoenix Past Los Dos

By CHRIS HOCKMAN - chris.hockman@uslsoccer.com, 04/12/18, 8:25AM EDT

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Legendary forward’s first goal of the season makes difference in 1-0 victory


Photo courtesy LA Galaxy II

CARSON, Calif. – Didier Drogba showed his goal-scoring prowess again as his perfect strike gave Phoenix Rising FC a 1-0 victory against LA Galaxy II at StubHub Center Track & Field Stadium on Wednesday night. Los Dos started the match well, taking the match to Phoenix early to try and find an early goal as they had the bulk of the ball in the opening 20 minutes. LA should have gone ahead in the 34th minute when Ethan Zubak squared for Ariel Lassiter, whose attempted tap-in went just wide. That allowed Phoenix to counter from the goal kick with forward Solomon Asante squaring for partner Billy Forbes who sent his finish just wide from a tight angle. The pattern from the first half quickly repeated itself in the second half with the Galaxy II taking charge of the match. But in the 64th minute Drogba punished Los Dos for not taking advantage as he hit a powerful shot from the edge of the area, curling it just out of the reach of the goalkeeper for the lone goal of the match. LA tried to pull a goal back, but Phoenix was content to defend well and hold on for the victory.

Scoring
64’ – PHX – Didier Drogba (Gladson Awako)

Three Things That Matter:

  • 1. Things have not started well for the Galaxy II, who are still looking for their first win of the season. Despite winning the battle for possession with 54.8 percent of the ball Los Dos couldn’t make it count as they fell to a second consecutive defeat.
  • 2. Rising FC has been dominant in this series, especially in recent matches, having won every match between the two since August 31st, 2016. This match was the lowest scoring between the two sides with just one goal. That came as a result of just four shots on target through the match for both sides as Drogba's moment of class provided the moment the visitors needed to take all three points.
  • 3. Attacking play has been the downfall for the Galaxy II this season and it continued to be the issue in this match. With more of the ball, Los Dos wasted it with wayward shooting, managing just two shots on target from a total of 12.

USLSoccer.com Man of the Match:

Gladson Awako, Phoenix Rising FC – A smart touch from Awako gave him the assist for Drogba’s goal capping a strong night for the midfielder. Sitting at a 91.3 percent passing accuracy rate helped Awako notch two key passes in the match.

Upcoming Games:
LA Galaxy II
vs. Saint Louis FC– April 14, 8:30p.m. ET, Toyota Stadium
Phoenix Rising FC vs. Swope Park Rangers  – April 21, 10p.m. ET, Phoenix Rising Soccer Complex

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