Head coach Bob Bradley paid tribute to Carlos Vela’s outrageous goal as Los Angeles FC thrashed San Jose Earthquakes 4-0.
Vela scored a clear MLS goal of the season contender on Wednesday as Western Conference leaders LAFC cruised to a stunning victory at the Banc of California Stadium.
Following Diego Rossi’s early opener, the former Arsenal striker doubled LAFC’s lead in the 17th-minute from the spot. He then produced undoubtedly one of the finest goals in MLS history by evading three players, including the goalkeeper, before tapping the ball into the bottom corner.
Speaking to reports afterwards, Bradley praised Vela’s goal by labelling it one that “stays with you”.
“One really special goal,” said Bradley, according to AS.
“We all want to see moments like that. You come to the game tonight and you see that goal, that’s something that stays with you. Carlos is capable of doing that kind of stuff.”
Joshua Perez scored an 81st-minute goal to seal an emphatic 4-0 win for LAFC on the night. Therefore, Bradley’s men have moved a staggering 19 points clear at the top of the Western Conference from second-place Minnesota United.
Vela, on the other hand, has taken his tally for the season up to 26 goals and 10 assists in 25 MLS games.
This incredible run of form even led Bradley to encourage the 30-year-old Mexican to try and match Lionel Messi’s level. However, the LAFC coach downplayed suggestions his comments egged Vela on.
“To be clear on this, it’s 100 per cent sure that Carlos isn’t playing this well because I told him to be like Messi,” said Bradley.
“If it was that easy, I’d tell them all [to be like Messi], or I’d tell some to be like Xavi to spread it out a little bit.”
Vela, of course, is just five goals shy of matching Josef Martinez’s record of 31 strikes during a single MLS season.
This rich rein of form has led to comparisons between Vela and LA Galaxy star Zlatan Ibrahimovic – much to the big Swede’s disgust.