November 29, 2022

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Major League Soccer Cup: Gareth Bale scores dramatic goal in LA Football club's thrilling penalty shootout win

Major League Soccer Cup: Gareth Bale scores dramatic goal in LA Football club’s thrilling penalty shootout win



CNN

Gareth Bale A dramatic late goal helped LA Football Club win their first Major League Soccer Cup in a frenetic and thrilling final against Philadelphia Union at Bank of California Stadium in Los Angeles.

Jack Elliott appeared to have won the Philadelphia game when he scored in injury-time overtime, but Bale’s substitute header minutes later tied the match 3-3 and forced into a penalty shootout that LAFC won 3-0.

“It’s always good to score in finals, and I seem to have a knack for doing that,” Bale, who joined LAFC from Real Madrid earlier this year, told reporters after the match. “It’s big. It’s important for the club. It’s important for the fans.”

With Real Madrid, Bale scored three goals in the Champions League finals – including a stunning bike kick against Liverpool in 2018.

“The reason I came here is to try and help the club win the MLS Cup,” added the Wales international.

“You can see how happy everyone is now – the fans and the city. It’s important for this club to take it to the next level, and I think by winning this cup it shows that we are.”

LAFC opened the scoring in Saturday’s final with a skewed free kick from Kellyn Acosta in the 28th minute.

Lagging 1-0 at the start of the second half, Daniel Gazdag scored the equalizer when Jose Martinez’s shot was fired into the penalty area.

The match remained coherent until the 83rd minute when a goal by Jesus Murillo gave Los Angeles the lead again. However, this lead wouldn’t last long as Etihad’s Jack Elliott headed a header to force overtime.

In the 110th minute, LAFC goalkeeper Maxime Crépeau received a yellow card after a disgusting foul on Philadelphia player Cory Burke.

Both players were injured due to the foul and the card was changed to red as Crépeau was sent off the field due to the injury. Burke remained in the game, while reserve LAFC goalkeeper John McCarthy was brought in to finish the match.

Union’s Elliott stepped up again in injury time, scoring to give his team the lead with about five minutes remaining.

But just as the federation believed it had secured the championship, Bale provided a late equalizer in the final moments of injury time to force a penalty shootout.

McCarthy, who hails from Philadelphia, was the Los Angeles champion saving two penalties in the shootout, while LAFC scored three of four attempts, including a championship-clinching Eli Sanchez goal.

McCarthy celebrates a LAFC win in Los Angeles.

This drove the fans crazy as players and coaches ran onto the field to celebrate the victory.

McCarthy was named the 2022 MLS Cup MVP after the game.

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