Player of the Matchday

LAFC forward Cristian Arango named Week 24 MLS Player of the Week

After scoring twice and leading his team to a 3-2 victory over Real Salt Lake on Sunday, LAFC forward Cristian Arango has been named MLS Player of the Week for Week 24.

The Colombian was the catalyst behind the Black & Gold's push toward the Audi 2021 MLS Cup Playoffs picture, where they're now level on points with RSL for the Western Conference's seventh and final spot. They remain below the playoff line only on the goal-differential tiebreaker.

Arango netted the opener on the game's first sequence for a history-making goal. He cashed home after just 20 seconds, breaking the record for the quickest goal to start an MLS match in LAFC's four-year history. Teammate Eduard Atuesta held the previous mark after scoring 85 seconds into LAFC's 1-1 draw with the Seattle Sounders in April.

After RSL equalized through a Damir Kreilach golazo, Arango restored the lead on the half-hour mark with a clinical snapped header that came off a pinpoint assist from Atuesta. Anderson Julio equalized again for the visitors in the 48th minute, but a 59th-minute own goal from RSL's Toni Datkovic helped deliver LAFC all three points.

The brace gives "Chicho" four goals in his first six MLS appearances since joining during the Secondary Transfer Window from Colombian side Millonarios. The 26-year-old continues to make a positive early impression, tallying in three straight games for LAFC.

LAFC and Arango return to action Wednesday evening at Austin FC (9 pm ET | MLS LIVE on ESPN+).

The MLS Player of the Week is selected each week 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 the vote. NASR consists of members of print, television, radio and online media.