3) A disjointed and sloppy performance
Once, the first 25 minutes had passed, the Sounders started to lose their way. As Jordan Morris said afterwards, things were a little disjointed.
The Seattle native was referring more to the attack, but the same applied across the pitch. Nouhou Tolo was particularly sloppy in defense and it was Morris himself who played Vela onside for what would turn out to be the winning goal.
As we already mentioned, Frei bailed his teammates out several times. The question is, how much of this was due to a lack of communication in defense, versus playing against one of the top attacks in MLS?
Schmetzer made no excuses for what happened on the night. Speaking to the media, he said:
"You expect a good team that's playing at home like LAFC, to raise the intensity of their performance. But after we took a lead at 1-0, I thought there were many moments where we just didn't play like we had those first 20-25 minutes. Then they started to get hold of the game a little bit and there were some defensive errors that we'll clean up. But it was down to us not continuing to be on the front foot after we scored the first goal. "
In this respect, Schmetzer did bring Fredy Montero and Jimmy Medranda on during the second half. However, along with switching to a 3-5-2 formation which moved Morris up front, it had little of the desired effect.