Coming off an electric individual effort in his team's 2-1 El Tráfico triumph over LAFC, LA Galaxy midfielder Riqui Puig has been recognized as the MLS Player of the Matchday presented by Continental Tire for Matchday 23.
The dynamic Spaniard was the best player on the pitch during the massive rivalry result for the Galaxy, dazzling the MLS-record 82,110 fans in attendance at the Rose Bowl throughout the match while also contributing to both of his team's goals. Puig assisted on teammate Tyler Boyd's opener in the 26th minute, then scored the game-winning tally in the 73rd minute.
The decisive goal was a spectacular display of effort, as Puig embarked on a lung-busting 60-yard run to put himself in position to receive Boyd's cross before converting a sliding finish past LAFC goalkeeper John McCarthy. Boyd and Puig became the first pair of teammates to each score at least one goal and add one assist in an El Tráfico match.
Puig is the first Galaxy player to garner Player of the Matchday honors since forward Dejan Joveljic managed the feat on Matchday 14 of the 2022 season. He's also the third Galaxy player to win the award on the heels of an El Tráfico match, joining Zlatan Ibrahimovic (who did so twice) and Sebastian Lletget (Matchday 10 of 2020).
After a difficult start to their 2023 campaign, the Galaxy have gone six straight matches unbeaten (2W-0L-4D) as they look to continue their recent course correction in Matchday 24 when they host the Philadelphia Union (Saturday, 10:30 pm ET | Apple TV - Free).
The MLS Player of the Matchday presented by Continental Tire is selected each matchday of the regular season through both media and fan voting in a process conducted by MLS Communications. A panel of journalists from the North American Soccer Reporters (NASR) comprises 75 percent of the vote, while a Twitter fan vote represents the remaining 25 percent of voting. NASR consists of members of print, television, radio, and online media.