One day after parting ways with longtime club president Chris Klein, the Galaxy earned their first away win of the year, injecting a sliver of momentum into an otherwise disappointing season. After last weekend's 1-0 loss to Charlotte FC, LA players and coaches also had an on-field discussion with supporters about the club's lackluster performances.
"Yesterday we lost a guy in Chris that we all care about. We all feel some responsibility in that process. It's hard not to," head coach and sporting director Greg Vanney said following the match. "As a group, we came together and we fought today. … The spirit in the group was amazing."
Entering the evening in last place in the Western Conference standings, winless on the road, without their captain Chicharito due to a red card suspension and without a goal in their last three league matches, external expectations were low for Wednesday's match. And while the win doesn't immediately change their situation, it gives the team something they've desperately needed: hope.
"What we talked about this week is that you're never too far away," said Vanney. "One of the things about MLS in the regular season, especially early on, is it can be forgiving if you can find your footing and you can find yourself and you can get on some sort of a run. You can build some sort of consistency. Many teams have won a championship."
For the five-time MLS Cup winners, winning championships is all that matters. Despite their recent struggles, the players are still adamantly clinging to higher standards for themselves.
"I don't think there's any pressure off," said winger Tyler Boyd, who played through a broken hand to come off the bench and score the game-winner after midfielders Gastón Brugman and Memo Rodríguez also scored. "We're still not where we want to be. I don't think anything's changed."
LA, six points off the West's last Audi MLS Cup Playoffs spot, are now 13th in the table and narrowly above the slumping Colorado Rapids. They'll return to league play June 11 when visiting high-flying expansion side St. Louis CITY SC.
"We need to string some wins together and continue with this momentum," Boyd added. "No pressure off. We still have to fight hard, train hard, continue to push each other. So nothing changes."