CARSON, Calif. – Omar Gonzalez had been waiting for a set piece goal throughout the 2013 season, and finally, in the closing stages of the LA Galaxy’s 4-2 victory over Real Salt Lake, he found the back of the net to end a remarkable week.
The Galaxy’s newest Designated Player was his usual effective self on the defensive end against RSL, but in the 75th minute, he was able to nod a Landon Donovan corner kick past ‘keeper Nick Rimando and into the back of the net.
“I’ve been waiting for a set piece and maybe a week ago I said hopefully some more will be coming and tonight I got one which I’m really happy about,” said Gonzalez. “I think that I could have got two more. But I think I’m happy with the one and hopefully I can just build off that.”
Immediately after his goal, Gonzalez had a few words for his RSL counterpart Nat Borchers, who was marking him on the play. The Salt Lake defender had his arms wrapped around Gonzalez on the play, but LA’s newest DP was able to burst free in able to get a head on the Donovan corner.
As for what was said between the two defenders? Simply “smack talk” according to Gonzalez.
“There was a little bit of smack talk before the ball was hit. Borchers was talking some smack, but I think that I got the last laugh,” said Gonzalez. “There’s a little bit [after the goal], we were still going out it during the next two chances that I got. I wish that I could have scored on those chances too.’
To score his first goal of the season in a victory in a win over a conference rival just days after signing a new contract proved to be a perfect cap to the week for Gonzalez.
“It feels great,’ said Gonzalez. “Scoring after signing my contract was great and I just want to help this team win and do whatever I can to help this team win whether it’s scoring goals or just keeping the zero. Tonight, we didn’t keep the zero but I helped on the other end so I just want to contribute anyway that I can.”
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy stormed back from a one goal deficit to defeat Real Salt Lake 4-2 on Saturday.
Joao Plata put RSL up in the 53rd minute, but LA answered right back with two goals from Robbie Keane, who scored twice in a nine minute span. Newly crowned Designated Player Omar Gonzalez added a third in the 75th minute of play. Keane would complete the hat trick with a goal in the 86th minute, but RSL cut he lead in half with a Robbie Findley goal off a free kick.
*Carlo Cudicini and Robbie Rogers were both left off the game day roster due to a coach's decision.
*With his three goals, Robbie Keane now has 10 goals on the season for LA, making him the fourth player in club history with consecutive seasons of 10 or more goals.
*Donovan and Keane are the first MLS teammates with hat tricks in consecutive games since Donovan and Dewayne De Rosario performed the same feat during the 2003 season with the San Jose Earthquakes.
*The Galaxy are now 3-7-1 when allowing the first goal while RSL is 11-3-3 when scoring first.
*Jaime Penedo made his MLS Regular Season debut with a start and had just a single save.
*Sean Franklin made his 150th MLS Regular Season appearance for the Galaxy after coming on as a sub in the 66th minute.
*The two goals were Keane's seventh multi-goal game of his MLS career. He has now scored 28 MLS Regular Season goals in his career with LA.
*RSL's Kyle Beckerman is suspended due to yellow card accumulation for their next match against the Portland Timbers on Aug. 21.
*Landon Donovan is now second all-time for the MLS Regular Season assist mark with 115 passing Carlos Valderrama. He's 20 assists behind the all-time leader, New England Revolution great Steve Ralston.
On Saturday, the LA Galaxy will be don their new third kit inspired by the 1996 LA Galaxy team against Real Salt Lake.
Ahead of the match, I spoke to three Galaxy originals about their impressions about the kit.
Their thoughts are below...
MAURICIO CIENFUEGOS: “It was supposed to reflect every one of the players’ nationalities. Some people liked it and some people did not, but it was unique. I think the fact that the team selected it as the third kit shows that somebody must have liked it and it struck a chord with someone. I think that they did a great job of replicating that jersey, it looks good. It speaks to how different and unique that shirt was, our football style was, and 17 years later, they’re bringing it back.”
ROBIN FRASER: “Horrible. I think that we all thought everything is great, but these uniforms are terrible. It’s interesting that over the years, the jerseys have become more conventional and those odd uniforms from 1996 are somewhat of a conversation piece now.”
CURT ONALFO: “I actually liked it. For me, it was an honor playing for the Galaxy. We never had a league before 1996, and I graduated in 1991, so from then to 1996, I had to continue to play professionally and live my dream. Playing in MLS and playing professionally in the United States with the Galaxy was an amazing experience. For me personally, having overcome cancer it was even more special. Whatever jersey that we were wearing, I was happy to wear it.”
In the latest video preview, LAGalaxy.com caught up with head coach Bruce Arena and players Landon Donovan, Robbie Keane, and A.J. DeLaGarza
Check it out below..
In the latest installment of LA Galaxy "Where Are They Now?"
Highlights of Karapetyan are below...
CARSON, Calif. – Major League Soccer has fined LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena 2,000 dollars for his public criticism of the officials following LA’s 3-3 draw with FC Dallas last week.
In the latest edition of View from the Booth, Joe Tutino and I discuss the LA Galaxy's match with Real Salt Lake.
Check it out below...
CARSON, Calif. -- There's been tons of Omar Gonzalez Designated Player content churned out at LAGalaxy.com and on LA Galaxy Insider today, so I've decided to create a nifty page to place all of the stories in one place.
* My commentary on what Gonzalez's deal means for the Galaxy, MLS and U.S. National Team.
*In this piece from the press conference, Gonzalez talks about the ability to continue his "dream" career with the Galaxy.
* Gonzalez's LA Galaxy teammates were pleased with the club rewarding Gonzalez and Landon Donovan admitted that the defender's signing may have a great impact on American soccer.
* During Gonzalez's press conference, AEG President and CEO Dan Beckerman stated that "Omar is the Galaxy."
*Now that Gonzalez has been locked up to a DP deal, the Galaxy are turning their focus to keeping Landon Donovan at the StubHub Center for years to come.
*With the World Cup just a year away, talks will soon heat about about MLS players going on offseason loans abroad, but Galaxy President Chris Klein says those will be handed on a "case by case basis."
*Lastly, you can check out the highlights from Gonzalez's press conference as well as the "sizzle" highlight video created following his signing below.
CARSON, Calif. -- We know Omar Gonzalez is the LA Galaxy's third Designated Player, but now we may now how long he'll remain with the Galaxy.
ESPN's Matt Stein reported on Thursday that Gonzalez's deal is for 1.5 million a year for the next three seasons. A source confirmed to LA Galaxy Insider that Gonzalez's deal is in fact for three seasons.
The tweet by Stein is below...
Hearing new Omar Gonzalez deal w/ @lagalaxy will pay him in excess of $1.5 million annually for next three seasons. Nice bump from $282,000
— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) August 16, 2013
Any LA Galaxy offseason loans to be decided on a "case by case basis" says Galaxy President Chris Klein
CARSON, Calif. – Omar Gonzalez may have signed his deal with the LA Galaxy, but for as long as he plays in MLS, talk of his need to “test himself” in Europe will persist.
With Gonzalez signing multi-year deal with the team, he’ll be a member of LA for the foreseeable future, but what is to stop the 24-year-old center back from going on an offseason loan. There’s plenty of precedent for these types of moves as over the past four years Landon Donovan, Robbie Keane, David Beckham, and even Gonzalez himself have gone on loans.
The defender was not asked explicitly about the prospect of a future loan, but Galaxy President Chris Klein appeared to note that the team will decide that on a case by case basis.
Quite honestly, our league season continues to get longer rand longer. We never right anything off, but that becomes a decision that Bruce looks into in their preparation for the season. I know one thing, we certainly look at our league season as a priority and we think that players can prepare for a World Cup or other things by playing in our league. We take it on a case by case basis."