MLS Snapshot: Columbus Crew SC 1-1 LA Galaxy

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The game in 100 words (or less): Columbus Crew SC are a team without their mojo at the moment. Their ongoing struggles resulting from a complete lack of identity continued for much of the night on Saturday, as Gregg Berhalter’s side came from behind to salvage a 1-1 draw with the Robbie Keane- and Gyasi Zardes-less (Zardes began the game on the bench) LA Galaxy. For much of the night, Crew SC were content to hit long balls forward to the head of Kei Kamara, who while often times winning said long balls, was unable to create much of anything on the knock-down. For one brief moment in the second half, they looked like the Crew SC side who run roughshod over the rest of Major League Soccer the first month and a half of the season. In the end, a draw was probably a fair result, though the Galaxy will be disappointed by the one missed tackle that cost them two points.

[ MORE: The rest of PST’s MLS coverage ]

Three moments that mattered

6′ — Clark makes a big save on Villarreal — Michael Parkhurst gifted Jose Villarreal a golden scoring chance with a weakly hit back-pass to goalkeeper Steve Clark, which the young Galaxy attacker pounced on and nearly converted into an early goal, if not for Clark’s intervention at the top of the six-yard box.

14′ — Pinball in the box leads to Lletget’s first MLS goal — The Crew SC defense decided to play pinball inside their own penalty area, failing to clear the ball on a pair of occasions, which presented Sebastian Lletget with a golden chance to score his first MLS goal, and he made the most of it.

66′ — Finlay to Higuain for the Crew SC equalizer — Tony Tchani’s diagonal ball sprang Ethan Finlay down the right wing, where the lightning-quick winger received a fortunate bounce off of Leonardo. From there, Finlay cut the ball back for Federico Higuain near the penalty spot, and Pipa did not miss from there.

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Man of the match: Sebastian Lletget — Outside of his goal, Lletget was the most consistently dangerous attacking player during his 84 minutes on the field. A bit more patience and vision here and there, and he could have had a second goal or an assist, but a strong outing for the Galaxy youngster regardless.

LINEUPS

Columbus Crew SC: Clark, Francis, Pogatetz, Parkhurst, Jimenez, Tchani, Saeid, Meram, Higuain (Speas 90+1′), Finlay (Schoenfeld 84′), Kamara

Goals: Higuain (66′)

LA Galaxy: Penedo, Gargan, Gonzalez, Leonardo, Rogers, Juninho, Vayrynen (Walker 81′), Ishizaki, Lletget (Gordon 84′), Husidic, Villarreal (Zardes 60′)

Goals: Lletget (14′)

Watford chasing Rennes, Senegal star Sarr

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Watford may capture one of the rising stars of the game.

Ismaila Sarr would cost the Hornets a club transfer record fee, and Sky Sports says that Watford and Rennes are about $10 million apart.

The Ligue 1 side reportedly wants $34 million for the Senegal national team right wing.

[ VIDEO: Nketiah leads Arsenal win ]

Sarr, 21, scored a goal and an assist in Senegal’s run to the Africa Cup of Nations final, playing opposite Sadio Mane of Liverpool.

He posted 13 goals with 14 assists last season between Ligue 1, the French Cup, and the Europa League. He was the lone Rennes player to score against Arsenal in the UEL Round of 16.

Watford has held onto Abdoulaye Doucoure and Dodi Lukebakio this offseason. Lukebakio is also a 21-year-old right wing, and had a sensational loan season with Fortuna Dusseldorf in 2019-20.

Nketiah leads Arsenal past Fiorentina (video)

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Eddie Nketiah scored twice as Arsenal beat Fiorentina 3-0 in Charlotte on Saturday.

Joe Willock also scored for the Gunners, which beat Colorado Rapids and Bayern Munich in their first two matches of the preseason and meet Real Madrid in Maryland on Tuesday.

[ MORE: Guardiola hails KDB ]

Fiorentina took 18 of the match’s 30 shots, though Arsenal had nearly 60 percent of the ball.

Nketiah, 20, scored against Burnley in last season’s Premier League finale and then late against Bayern Munich earlier this week.

He was deft in a high-pressure spot for this one.

Premier League friendlies: Watford beats Bayer, Man Utd over Inter

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Arsenal and Fiorentina are set to kickoff in Charlotte tonight, with the Gunners the last of a bevy of Premier League sides to engage in preseason friendlies this muggy Saturday.

[ MORE: Guardiola hails KDB ]


Girona 1-2 Bournemouth

Juanpe’s late header pushed La Liga’s hosts past Eddie Howe and his 10-man Cherries, playing down after VAR deemed Jack Simpson‘s foul worthy of a sending off. Ryan Fraser scored Bournemouth’s goal, assisted by Jordon Ibe.

Northampton Town 0-4 Sheffield United

Oliver Norwood converted two penalties in an easy win for Chris Wilder in his return to a club he played for and managed.

Fulham 2-1 Brighton and Hove Albion

Pascal Gross scored with an early free kick — a Megan Rapinoe special — but Tom Cairney scored twice after halftime for the Championship side.

Cheltenham Town 1-2 Leicester City

The Foxes collected a second win over a lower league side this week, with Jamie Vardy and Marc Albrighton on the board.

Newcastle United 1-0 West Ham United (Shanghai)

New manager Steve Bruce watched from the crowd as the Magpies made amends for a 4-0 loss to Wolves by blanking West Ham. Jamie Sterry‘s cross for Yoshinori Muto was delightful, and the Japanese striker’s finish was well-taken.

Port Vale 1-3 Burnley; Crewe Alexandra 0-1 Burnley

Chris Wood, Matej Vydra and Robbie Brady scored as the Clarets overcame an early Nick Pope goal to beat Port Vale, but the Premier League side couldn’t do much in a simultaneous friendly at Crewe.

Inter Milan 0-1 Manchester United (Singapore)

Substitute forward Mason Greenwood, just 17, scored the late goal in a match United controlled, outshooting Inter 21-8.

Preston North End 1-3 Southampton

Brace-bagging Danny Ings doesn’t usually have a problem with finish, so passing the ball directly to him is not something we’d recommend to goalkeepers. Jake Vokins also scored for Saints at Deepdale.

Watford 2-1 Bayer Leverkusen (Austria)

Will Hughes and Andre Gray scored as the Hornets collected a win over Champions League competition.

Man City (0-0, 2-3 pens) Wolves (Shanghai)

Rui Patricio was very good over 90 minutes, and stopped City’s first two penalty attempts as Wolves continue to perplex the PL champions.

WATCH: Marco Fabian smashes set piece goal

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Marco Fabian sent a missile toward goal, and perhaps it’s good the goalkeeper didn’t get to the hand-breaking shot.

Philadelphia took a 1-0 lead over Chicago on Saturday in Chester, Pennsylvania, thanks to the Mexican midfielder.

[ REPORT: Man Utd locks up De Gea ]

It was a pretty set piece from Jim Curtin’s men, a backwards played free kick was laid off to Fabian for his audacious rip.

Fabian hasn’t had a wonderful 2019 season, but his fourth goal of the season will give Union supporters hope that he’ll pick up his form and make the already East-leading side all the more dangerous.