MLS Cup Playoffs: LAFC beats Houston Dynamo 2-0 to reach 2nd straight final

Los Angeles FC midfielder Ryan Hollingshead, center, celebrates his goal with teammates during the first half in the MLS playoff Western Conference final soccer match against Houston Dynamo, Saturday, Dec. 2, 2023, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

LAFC is one win away from becoming the first repeat MLS champion in a decade.

The defending champions defeated the Houston Dynamo 2-0 on Saturday in the Western Conference final at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles to set up a final against the Columbus Crew, who punched their ticket earlier in the day with a comeback win over FC Cincinnati.

It hasn't been the easiest season for LAFC, but they have once again caught fire when it counts. This time, it was Ryan Hollingshead who came through in the first half with a goal off a corner kick from Carlos Vela.

LAFC put the game away in the 80th minute with an own goal from Houston off a cross from Diego Palacios.

Dynamo actually won the possession game with more than 70%, but LAFC was arguably the team in control most of the time, outshooting Houston 18-10.

Here is how the match unfolded: