Javier Hernandez missed another spotkick before Riqui Puig took over penalty duties to net a season-saving 99th-minute equaliser in the LA Galaxy’s 1-1 draw at Nashville on Saturday.
Nashville had gone ahead in the 28th minute from Hany Mukhtar’s penalty but Hernandez was the centre of attention once again.
The former Manchester United forward failed to convert a 97th-minute penalty attempting a Panenka last Sunday against Sporting KC, spurning a hat-trick and winner.
Hernandez stepped up again in the 55th minute after being bundled over by Shaquell Moore but had his low shot tipped around the post by goalkeeper Joel Willis.
With their season on the line, the Galaxy earned a late reprieve after a penalty was awarded for a Walker Zimmerman handball following VAR review, with the defender receiving a second yellow card.
But Riqui Puig grabbed the ball and took the responsibility instead of Hernandez, before firing just beyond Willis’ fingertips for the goal.
The result means the Galaxy are winless in three games and sit eighth in the Western Conference on 40 points.
RIQUI CALLED GAME pic.twitter.com/CkEnlsp16E
— LA Galaxy (@LAGalaxy) September 10, 2022
Western Conference leaders LAFC stumbled again, suffering their fourth loss in their past five games with a 2-1 defeat to Dallas.
Jesus Ferreira boosted his claims on a spot in USA’s World Cup squad with a double for Dallas, while LAFC were reduced to 10 men after Ryan Hollingshead’s 13th-minute red card.
Eastern Conference leaders Philadelphia Union showed why they are arguably the best team in the MLS with a 5-1 thrashing of Orlando City securing their fifth straight victory.
Lewis Morgan scored a 78th-minute penalty to help New York Red Bulls secure a 2-1 home win over New England to firm up their grip on third in the east.
— x – PhilaUnion (@PhilaUnion) September 11, 2022
New York City suffered their seventh defeat from their past nine games, going down 1-0 to Charlotte.
Brenner scored a hat-trick as Cincinnati extended their unbeaten run to nine games, winning 6-0 over San Jose Earthquakes
Thiago Almada fired in a golazo as Atlanta United defeated Toronto 4-2, while Inter Miami slumped to a third straight loss with a 3-1 defeat at Chicago Fire.
Seattle Sounders toppled Austin 3-0, Houston Dynamo and Sporting KC drew 0-0, Portland Timbers edged Minnesota United 1-0, Colorado Rapids beat Vancouver Whitecaps 3-1 and Real Salt Lake and DC United ended goalless.
— Atlanta United FC (@ATLUTD) September 11, 2022