The Los Angeles Football Club (LAFC) defeated fellow MLS foe the Philadelphia Union 3–0 (4–1, aggregate) to advance to the final of the CONCACAF Champions League at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on May 2.
LAFC dominated their home match to qualify for their second Champions League Final in the last four years—following a 1–1 draw last week in Chester, Pa., during the first leg of the home-and-away series.
Los Angeles led early beginning in the 13th minute with Timothy Tillman's first-ever goal, with an open goal follow-up of Ilie Sanchez's close-range header from a corner by Carlos Vela that was saved on the line by Union goalkeeper Andre Blake.
"From the very beginning, you could tell we were locked in," said LAFC defender Ryan Hollingshead. "We came with everything we had. We did not take these guys lightly. They're a very good team."
The Union were reduced to 10 players with the ejection of Olivier Mbazio following his second yellow card in the 59th minute, after his initial booking in the 41st minute.
LAFC extended the lead in the 82nd minute with Vela's through-ball assist into the box to Mahala Opoku. The Ghanaian striker sent an unstoppable left-footed blast from the left-center of the box into the center-right of the goal.
The 2023 CONCACAF Champions League scoring leader, Denis Bouanga, added his sixth in the 90th minute for a 3–0 final.
Bouanga received a through-ball from Jose Cifuentes near the penalty spot and finished with a right-footed shot to the top-left corner.
The Black & Gold will meet the winner of Mexican Liga MX Tigres UANL or Leon in the Champions League Final.
LAFC return to MLS action this Saturday, away at the San Jose Earthquakes at 4:30 p.m. live on MLS Season Pass on Apple TV.