LA Galaxy scored twice in the final ten minutes to snatch a point in a 2-2 draw with New York Red Bulls.
After a goalless first 45, the Eastern Conference side came out firing after the interval, with Gonzalo Veron and Sean Davis scoring within six minutes of each other to hand their side a commanding lead.
However, with just ten minutes remaining, Steven Gerrard’s header teed up forward Mike Magee to produce a neat left-footed finish to give the Galaxy hope.
Bruce Arena’s team continued to pile on the pressure and it eventually told; albeit through an unexpected source. Ashley Cole – who had previously failed to get on the scoresheet in his short career in the US – found himself unmarked at the back post following a Gerrard cross, cooly taking the ball down on his chest before drilling the ball beneath the keeper’s legs.
After the game, Cole admitted the manner of his goal was fortunate, but felt it rewarded their team’s will to get back into the game.
“I feel a little bit lucky,” he said. “With a deflection off a Red Bull player, I was just there to take a shot, and lucky for me it went in.”
“When Bruce brought us in, that’s what he wanted to look for, that hunger and desire.
“We know if we ever go down in a game, we have the players to dig in and never give up, and the quality to score goals.”
Similarly, coach Arena was satisfied to have eventually come away from the game with a point and could not fault his team’s effort nor level of performance.
“I think it would have been a shame if we had walked off that field losing,” Arena added. “Because, over 90 minutes, we played pretty well. We certainly made mistakes that cost us, but I think on the night we played pretty well and deserved to get at least a point out of it.
“In the second half, we started pretty well, and then conceded the first goal and obviously the second one. But a tremendous effort by our guys. I thought the players that came into the game, Husidic, Magee, and Boateng did a great job to get us back in the game.
“I can’t be more pleased with our team and the character they shared at the end of the game to try and get back in it and get a point, and maybe three points.”
The result leaves LA 4th in the Western Conference with games in hand on those above themselves, while New York also remain comfortably in the playoffs, currently occupying 3rd place in the east.