When Zlatan Ibrahimovic exited last week in the 71st minute, the result wasn’t in doubt.
The Galaxy had had trouble holding on to leads, but this time they were well on their way to a 4-0 win over Columbus at StubHub Center, with Ibrahimovic, the team’s leading scorer, contributing a penalty-kick goal.
The win marked the Galaxy’s largest margin of victory in an MLS game since July 4, 2015. L.A. (7-7-4) will try to build on that success Saturday when it travels to face the New England Revolution (7-4-7) at Gillette Stadium (4:30 p.m. PDT).
The win over Columbus was welcome after a pair of draws against D.C. United and San Jose, and a 1-0 loss to Portland in the U.S. Open Cup. However, the Galaxy are unbeaten in their last six MLS matches.
Ibrahimovic has been a force with four goals over the last three games. He leads the team with 11 goals. Romain Alessandrini, who team the team in goals last season, has come on strong lately, with two of his five goals coming against Columbus and another against San Jose.
The big problem for L.A. has been preserving its leads. The Galaxy held a 3-1 lead over the Earthquakes 25 minutes into the game. San Jose tied it in the 69th minute. Against D.C. United, the Galaxy held a 2-0 lead after 25 minutes. One minute later the lead was 2-1, and after L.A.’s offense went quiet, D.C. tied the game in the 85th minute.
The Revolution, meanwhile, enter Saturday’s contest after a string of similar results. New England has tied in three of its last four matches, including its most recent, a scoreless draw with Seattle.