A few hours before the kickoff of the LA Galaxy-LAFC derby, we once again took a trip into the Galaxy’s parking lot tailgates, this time to get a more lighthearted take on the El Trafico rivalry. Instead of focusing on the intense bitterness that has developed between the two LA MLS franchises, we interviewed fans to test their knowledge of Galaxy trivia.
How well do you know your favorite team? Whether in real life or on social media, sports fans love to boast about their seemingly endless amounts of knowledge, especially about the teams and players they root for. While anyone can talk a big game, it takes a true real one to walk it as well (ask Zlatan Ibrahimovic).
To see if they could mirror the actions of their man-bunned hero, who netted a stunning hat trick en route to a 3-2 Galaxy victory, we traversed Dignity Health Sports Park to put members of the Galaxy faithful’s knowledge to the test.
The questions we asked were simple enough — there’s no use in harshing the mellow of the festivities with some obscure and challenging queries. With each increasing in difficulty, these were the five questions Galaxy fans were burdened with answering:
What year did the Galaxy start?
How many MLS titles do the Galaxy have?
Who is the all-time leading Galaxy goalscorer?
Who are the three players inducted into the Galaxy Ring of Fame?
Can you spell Zlatan Ibrahimovic?
While the questions may seem straightforward, the copious amounts of beer flowing at the tailgates proved to be a major inhibitor for many of the subjects we asked. Some of the attempts to spell Zlatan’s name were pure comedy (only four out of the 13 people interviewed were able to spell it correctly).
It was a pleasure to spend time with the Galaxy supporters before the match. A few offered to share a beer and were eager to discuss the impending biggest match of the 2019 season. But once the LAFC fans went marching by to enter the stadium, as loud as always, it was all business.
The emergence of LAFC, only thirteen miles away from Dignity Health Sports Park, has brought an edge to the LA soccer scene different from anywhere else in the country. LAFC fans are known for their intense and passionate support, but this has also pushed the Galaxy supporters to up their game.
I remember attending a Galaxy match back in 2007 to see David Beckham play in one of his first matches for the club. I thought that the Galaxy faithful could never surpass the support they had for the club back then, as it was an exciting time for the team and MLS. But since LAFC’s inaugural season in 2018, the newfound rivalry has seemed to spark a collective zeal that has taken Galaxy support to an even higher level.
The atmosphere inside Dignity Health Sports Park was electric. The Galaxy fans did not want to be another home crowd that allowed the “traveling” LAFC fans to drown out their own support. They did just the opposite. It was a call to arms — and their club responded on the pitch.
Ibrahimovic’s aforementioned hat trick sent the already energetic crowd into a frenzy as they watched the white and blue knock off arguably the best team in all of MLS, their crosstown rivals. Chants of “YOU CAN’T BEAT US” boomed throughout the arena as the final whistle blew.
A win for LA Galaxy and their supporters — and another chapter written in the drama that is El Trafico.