The LA Galaxy Academy lost one of it's coaches on Wednesday as Under-14 head coach Greg Vanney left the position to be the Academy Director and Assistant General Manager with Toronto FC.
Vanney served as LA's U-14 head coach and Technical Director of LA Galaxy Academy partner club LA Galaxy South Bay earlier this year. The 39-year-old had previously served as an assistant coach and Academy technical director with Chivas USA as well as Director of Soccer Operations and Director of Real Salt Lake-Arizona Youth.
Vanney replaces former U.S. youth coach Tomas Rongen who had previously served as TFC's Academy Director.
LA Galaxy Academy forward Haji Wright scored in the U.S. Under-17's 2-1 defeat to Portugal at the Nike International Friendlies on Monday.
Wright scored in the 13th minute to give the U.S. a lead, but the Europeans quickly answered with a goal in the 27th minute to tie the score. Portugal took the lead for good in stoppage time to defeat the Americans.
The U.S. return to action on Wednesday against England who fell 2-1 to Brazil in their first match.
LA Galaxy Academy product Haji Wright has been called up for the U.S. Under-17's roster for the upcoming 2013 Nike International Friendlies.
U.S. U-17 head coach Richie Williams' 20-man group will face Portugal on Monday before matches against England on Dec. 11 and Brazil on Dec. 13 at the Premier Sports Campus in Lakewood, Florida. It is Wright's second inclusion in the U.S. U-17 roster in less than a month as he took part in the nation's U-17's friendlies with Canada in November.
The roster includes eight players from California.
The complete roster is below...
GOALKEEPERS (2): William Pulisic (Richmond Strikers; Mechanicsville, Va.), Kevin Silva (PDA; Bethlehem, Pa.)
DEFENDERS (7): Hugo Arellano (Chivas USA Academy; Norwalk, Calif.), Daniel Barbir (Unattached; Allentown, Pa.), George Braima (Crew Soccer Academy; Columbus, Ohio), Edwin Lara (unattached; San Leandro, Calif.), John Nelson (Internationals; Medina, Ohio), Matthew Olosunde (New York Red Bulls Academy; Trenton, N.J.), Alexis Velela (San Diego Surf; San Diego, Calif.)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Eric Calvillo (Real So Cal; Palmdale, Calif.), Luca De La Torre (Fulham; San Diego, Calif.), Thomas McCabe (PDA; South Orange, N.J.), Logan Panchot (St. Louis Scott Gallagher Missouri; St. Louis, Mo), Brian Zelaya (De Anza Force; San Mateo, Calif.), Alejandro Zendejas (FC Dallas Academy; El Paso, Texas)
FORWARDS (5): Pierre Da Silva (New York Soccer Club; Port Chester, N.Y.), Joe Gallardo (Monterrey FC; San Diego, Calif.), Joshua Perez (unattached; La Habra, Calif.), Christian Pulisic (PA Classics; Hershey, Pa.), Haji Wright (LA Galaxy Academy); Los Angeles, Calif.
The LA Galaxy Academy Under-17/18 team continued their winning ways on Sunday with an impressive 3-0 victory over Nomads SC (La Jolla, Calif.) to extend their record to an impressive 6-1-2 mark after nine matches.
Forward Adonis Amaya tallied twice in victory with Bradford Jameison rounding out the scoring in LA’s victory. Amaya’s two goals brought his season total to 10 which moved him to the top of the U-17/18 Development Academy scoring charts.
Meanwhile, the Galaxy U-16 side is also enjoying plenty of success as they are 6-0-4 this season. The U-16’s played Nomads SC to a 1-1 draw last weekend with a goal from Dmitriy Zhuravlev. The U-16’s and the U-18’s will return to action in December when they travel to Florida for the Development Academy Showcase.
LA’s U-13/14 team are duplicating the success of their older groups with a 9-2-1 record including a 2-0 victory over Nomads SC last weekend off two goals from Jesus Nunez. The Galaxy Academy’s youngest Development Academy side concludes their 2013 slate this weekend when they face off against Albion SC on Dec. 7 and Los Angeles Futbol Academy on Dec. 8.
MLS will crown its champion this weekend while the NCAA Men's Soccer Tournament field will be dwindled to four.
Just eight remain in the tournament after a wild weekend that saw No. 1 ranked UCLA defeated by Connecticut in a thrilling penalty kick shoot out. LA Galaxy Academy products Grady Howe and Nathan Smith went all 110 minutes in the Bruins' surprising defeat. Connecticut will face Virginia with a berth in the College Cup on the line. Meanwhile UC Irvine, who boast Galaxy Academy defender Matt Tilley on their roster, fell 1-0 to Maryland.
Two Galaxy players will see their alma maters face off as the Hector Jimenez's California Golden Bears face off against the Maryland Terrapins -- who produced Galaxy players A.J. DeLaGarza, Omar Gonzalez and Robbie Rogers -- on Dec. 7 at Edwards Stadium in Berkeley.
The remaining matches will see Notre Dame face Michigan State and New Mexico taking on Washington.
PORTLAND, Ore.—While the first team trains in Portland, a pair of LA Galaxy academy members are off to Europe—one for good.
Academy defender Oscar Sorto will join Swedish second division club Hammarby on a two week training stint. The centerback –who was recently named to the US Soccer Developmental Academy West Division Best XI—joins a club coached by former Galaxy centerback Gregg Berhalter. Sorto made 24 appearances for the LA Galaxy U-17/18s as well as two in Reserve League play.
Meanwhile, Sorto heads to Sweden, his U-17/18 teammate, Mario Rodriguez has left the team to join German second division club 1. FC Kaiserslautern. Rodriguez— who was named to the U.S. Under-20 team for the Milk Cup tournament and appeared in the 2011 U-17 World Cup—made 21 appearances for the Galaxy U-17/18 side scoring seven goals. Rodriguez also made two appearances for the Galaxy reserves.
Following the Galaxy’s victory over Portland on Saturday, I caught up with Galaxy Vice President Chris Klein to discuss the moves. Klein, who served as the club’s Senior Director of the Academy before being named Vice President earlier this year also serves on the board of directors for the Swedish club.
Klein’s thoughts are below…
(On Sorto training at Hammarby)
“We just sent him over to Hammarby IF to train with Gregg [Berhalter], he’s one of the more promising players in our academy and with the relationship that we have with Hammarby, we thought it was good to get him over where while they’re on a break. They have a three week break over there and he can train with their first team and we’ll see how he does.”
“He’s going to be there for two weeks. It’s a two week period and after that two week period, we’ll re-evaluate the next stage of his development. College is still an option, signing and possibly a loan agreement is an option as well.”
(On Mario Rodriguez signing in Germany…)
“Mario Rodriguez is a player that we were very high on, but at the end of the day, we can’t sign all these players and that is one of the downsides of our Academy. He got a better offer than we could give him in Germany so we hope he does well. The reality is that we don’t own these players and it’s tough to keep them under your umbrella.”
*INSIDER Note: Klein references college being an option for Sorto; the centerback committed to CSU-Bakersfield in April.