adam serrano

23 March 2:29 pm

CARSON, Calif. -- LA Galaxy II opened their 2015 USL campaign with a scoreless draw against Real Monarchs, but head coach Curt Onalfo believed that his squad deserved far better had they finished their chances. 

For much of the game, Galaxy II were the better side as they routinely tested the Monarchs defense, and forced visiting goalkeeper Lalo Fernandez to make four stops on the evening. Whether it was Travis Bowen, Adonis Amaya or Ariel Lassiter, Galaxy II’s strikers routinely tested the Monarchs defense, but were unable to tally the winner that Los Dos needed.

Even though his team earned a point in their first match of 2015, Onalfo admitted that he felt his group should have taken all three points. 

"When a team comes in and drops those types of numbers behind the ball, it's an exercise in breaking down low pressure so the chances are few and far between. On the circumstances, we created enough chances but we just rushed it a little bit," Curt Onalfo told LAGalaxy.com. "The field was a little tight so it makes it a little bit more difficult, but having said that, we didn't give much away and we just have to figure out ways be sharper and find ways to break down low pressure."

Although Onalfo was somewhat frustrated about his young forwards inability to break down the Monarchs defensive line, he still had praise for Amaya who was making his first professional start. 

"He’s a solid player and is adjusting to the pace of the game which is normal given where he’s coming from," said Onalfo. "He’s a very smart player though and you can tell that he’s going to continue to progress."

22 March 8:20 pm

CARSON, Calif. -- A.J. DeLaGarza made a major step forward in his injury recovery by going 90 minutes for LA Galaxy II in their scoreless draw with Real Monarchs SLC on Sunday evening at StubHub Center. 

DeLaGarza started in central defense for Los Dos as Galaxy II were rarely tested by the Real Salt Lake affiliate who were playing in their first-ever match.The appearance was DeLaGarza's longest of 2015 as the defender made just a brief cameo for the Galaxy first team in their opening match after missing much of the preseason with a left foot injury. 

Although DeLaGarza was rarely tested, the match nearly turned dark for the defender as he appeared to injury his ankle in stoppage time after a late challenge by a Real Monarchs defender. 

"90 minutes of time as a center back is probably just 45 minutes fitness wise for an outside back, but I felt fine," said A.J. DeLaGarza. They didn't have many chances in our half where we were running too much. I felt like as a group we were organized and we didn't really allow them anything. At the end of the game, one of their young guys tried to make a play as I was going to clear the ball, and he just ran through my ankle. I honestly thought it popped out, but thankfully nothing bad happened and I just jogged off."

21 March 11:18 pm

CARSON, Calif. -- LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena addressed the media after the club's 1-1 draw to the Houston Dynamo.

Arena's comments are below.

(On what he liked and didn’t like…)

ARENA: “I didn’t like a whole lot on the night. We weren’t very good to be honest with you. We lost too many battles on the night; I think they played harder over 90 minutes than we did. I think that made a difference in the game. We had a chance to win possibly going away if we were a little sharper. We had a mental breakdown on a corner kick. Robbie Rogers loses his man, and it’s a goal. In a game like this where your opponent is sitting back and defending with numbers looking to get at you on the break, or perhaps on a restart, we’ve got to be better than that. To concede a goal shortly after we scored, that’s not good on our part. Just on the night, I don’t think we were sharp, and I give Houston credit. They played real hard.”

(On Mika Vayrynen…)

ARENA: “Well tonight he had 20 minutes; it’s still not enough time. He is a good player, he gets the ball moving quickly, knows how to get his teammates involved in the game. For the most part, he was pretty solid.”

(On Edson Buddle…)

ARENA: “It’s always hard bringing a player in, I believe he came in around the 85 minute. He battled in there. We didn’t get any service to him, but he’ll get more playing time as we move forward.”

(On Leonardo’s play…)

ARENA: “I think he had a solid night. I think [Giles] Barnes is a hard guy to play against, and he was matched up with him a lot during the night and for the most part, did well. He has had a good start to the season for us.”

(On the midfield creating chances…)

ARENA: “I think they did okay. Obviously our passing on the night wasn’t good. I think it’s a tribute to all the lines. I think our back line didn’t pass the ball very well. I think that impacted the ability for the midfielders to have a better impact on the game.”

(On the Dynamo…)

ARENA: “They play well. It’s not surprising that that’s how they play coming on the road, trying to get a point and all of that. Give them credit, they did a good job. We’re still not sharp enough at this point, still not fit enough, no question about that. I think their goalkeeper did a good job, their backline was pretty solid, didn’t let anything get behind them. Overall, on the night I think they defended pretty well.”

(On Jaime Penedo’s performance…)

ARENA: “He did a good job. He wasn’t tested a whole lot. I’d like to see his kicking game a little better, but he wasn’t called on to make a whole lot of saves tonight. It was a quite game in terms of shot blocking. I think he did fine.” 

21 March 3:53 pm

CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy will put their 20 game home unbeaten streak on the line on Saturday when they take on the Houston Dynamo in a rematch of the 2011 and 2012 MLS Cup finals.

Not only are the Galaxy unbeaten in 20 games, but LA have lost only three of their last 43 matches in all MLS competitions at StubHub Center. 

Below is a collection of links to read, questions to answer, and a predicted lineup ahead of Saturday's match. 

LINKS:

*A migraine prevented Jaime Penedo from starting in goal against the Portland Timbers last week, which allowed Brian Rowe to earn his second consecutive start. Could Penedo make his first start in goal on Saturday
 
 
*A.J. DeLaGarza says that he's ready to return to the lineup after overcoming a foot injury, but will he start against Houston?
 

*Lastly, in the latest edition of "By the Numbers," we look at the Galaxy's recent struggles against the Dynamo

QUESTIONS TO ANSWER:

WILL BRIAN ROWE OR JAIME PENEDO START IN GOAL?

Jaime Penedo appears set to return to the lineup on Saturday, but how will the Panamanian perform after spending the last two matches on the bench?

COULD MIKA VAYRYNEN START ALONGSIDE JUNINHO?

Kenney Walker and Baggio Husidic earned starts alongside Juninho in the club's first two matches, but Vayrynen's strong cameo against the Timbers could allow him to start against the Dynamo

CAN JOSE VILLARREAL KEEP UP HIS RUN OF GOOD FORM?

Jose Villarreal has been one of the stars of the LA Galaxy's season to date with two confident performances along the left side of midfield, but can he keep up his stellar form on Saturday?

PREDICTED LINEUP:

Penedo; Gargan, Gonzalez, Leonardo, Rogers; Ishizaki, Juninho, Husidic, Villarreal; Keane, Zardes 

20 March 12:25 pm

CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy host the Houston Dynamo this Saturday in their third match of the 2015 MLS regular season. 

In the latest edition of LAGalaxy.com's By the Numbers, we take a look at the club's recent struggles against the Dynamo.

Check it out below. 

19 March 3:01 pm

Former Los Angeles Lakers fan favorite Metta World Peace is an LA Galaxy fan?

Who knew. 

In a video for the website "Funny or Die" World Peace (formerly known as Ron Artest, and occassionally referred to as 'The Pandas Friend) gives his selections for the 2015 March Madness Division I Men's Basketball Tournament, and he includes a special shoutout to the five-time MLS Cup champions. 

Check it out below.

19 March 1:35 pm

CARSON, Calif. – Amigraine prevented Jaime Penedo from starting the LA Galaxy’s clash with the Portland Timbers last week, but the Panamanian goalkeeper admits that he is fit and ready to start if called upon to face the Houston Dynamo on Saturday.

Migraines have been a sporadic ailment for Penedo over the past 10 years, but last Sunday’s game was the first time that the Panamanian had missed out on a match due to the issue. However, it’s not the migraine itself that rendered Penedo unable to play, but the pain medication that the 33-year-old takes that caused him to miss out on the game in Portland.

“I take a medicine to relieve the migraines but the medicine knocks me out. On Sunday, the problem was that I didn’t know if I should or shouldn’t take it [or not],” Penedo said. “I didn’t take it in the beginning and I was hoping an Aleeve would help me with the pain but it didn’t. My head was in pain so I had to take the medication, and 45 minutes later, my migraine was gone, but I felt woozy and I knew that I wouldn’t be able to play. I feel good now though.”

Although Penedo felt some migraine symptoms earlier in the week, the Panamanian says that he has practiced for three days without any lingering effects which could mean that he returns to the starting XI this weekend.

“I feel ready. I trained very well over the last few days, but now I’m ready. I was very disappointed that I couldn’t start; especially considering that Bruce Arena gave me the opportunity but it was taken away due to the migraine. I’m ready and I need to play so I await the coach’s decision.”

18 March 3:45 pm

CARSON, Calif. – A.J. DeLaGarza could be back in the starting XI soon as the veteran LA Galaxy defender has made a full recovery from a nagging left foot injury.

DeLaGarza’s injury kept the center back out of commission for much of the preseason, but he was able to make a brief cameo during the team’s season opener against the Chicago Fire. A week later, DeLaGarza was an unused substitute in LA’s 2-2 draw against the Portland Timbers, but according to Bruce Arena, DeLaGarza is “very close” to returning to the lineup.

“I missed the entire preseason, but I got 60 minutes in a [closed-door scrimmage] against Galaxy II last week," DeLaGarza said. "There’s no better way to get fit then actually playing. Hopefully soon, I can get back out there, and hopefully suffer no setbacks.”

Provided there aren’t any steps backward, DeLaGarza believes that he could be ready to start as soon as this Saturday’s game against the Houston Dynamo.

“I want to get a game in as soon as possible, I want to be out there because this is my livelihood,” DeLaGarza said. “The fun part of this job is playing in competitive matches, and if Bruce calls me up this weekend then I’ll be ready to play.”

18 March 12:25 pm

CARSON, Calif. -- LA Galaxy II forward Charlie Rugg is on the move once more as NASL side Indy Eleven announced that the 24-year-old was departing on loan for the entirety of the 2015 NASL season.

The move will be Rugg's second stint with Indy Eleven after making five appearances for the NASL club last Fall. During his time with the club, Rugg notched a goal and an assist while helping the team rack up a five game unbeaten run. 

“The 2014 season was undoubtedly an important one for the development of my professional career. I grew a lot playing with LA Galaxy II, but I feel that my short time here in Indy was equally important and a good note to end on,” said Rugg in an Indy Eleven press release.  “I'd like to pick up where I left off and use this year to continue to grow as well as help Indy Eleven stand out in the NASL.”
 
According to Indy Eleven, Rugg began training with the club on Wednesday and will be available once the team opens up the NASL season on April 4 against the Atlanta Silverbacks.
 
17 March 3:34 pm

CARSON, Calif. -- Brian Rowe made his second consecutive start when he got the nod in net for the LA Galaxy's 2-2 draw with the Portland Timbers on Sunday, but apparently, Bruce Arena was not intending to give the youngster the start initially. 

Arena told reporters on Tuesday that he had intended to start 2014 regular starter Jaime Penedo against the Timbers, but the Panamanian goalkeeper was a late scratch. 

"Jaime was supposed to start but came down with a migraine before the game so Brian got to play," Arena told reporters. "I think that it was good that Brian got two games in the early on in the season, but Jaime is certainly going to get back in there."

Both Penedo and Rowe trained on Tuesday. 

EDSON BUDDLE STILL WORKING TO RETURN FROM INJURY

A left quad injury has kept Edson Buddle from suiting up for the LA Galaxy this season, but the 34-year-old forward is making strides with his recovery and could be back in the squad this Saturday against the Houston Dynamo.

Buddle has taken part in full training with the club for the last week, but the veteran forward still believes that he needs to work on "each aspect" of the game to improve his overall sharpness. 

"I still have a ways to go. I need to work my way back into it," said Buddle. "It's possible [to play vs. Houston]. I'm shooting for it. Maybe this week I'll be ready, but you never know." 

Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena isn't so sure that the forward will be back by Houston, however. 

"He hasn't trained at all so he's just getting back into training." 

Even if the Houston match is still soon for Buddle, the forward "definitely" plans to be in the mix when the Galaxy take on D.C. United on March 28. 

DRAFT PICK ANDREW WOLVERTON STILL IN THE LA GALAXY'S PLANS

The LA Galaxy are still interested in bringing in 2015 MLS SuperDraft selection Andrew Wolverton, Bruce Arena confirmed on Tuesday.

LA selected the 6-foot-6 goalkeeper in the fourth round of the draft with the 82nd overall pick but he missed all of the preseason due to a nagging foot injury.