The LA Galaxy locked down two major pieces for the 2014 season as they re-signed defender Todd Dunivant and signed midfielder Baggio Husidic on a free transfer.
Just how much has Dunivant blossomed into a Galaxy staple? Above is a photo of Dunivant's first stint with the Galaxy when he participated in LA's 2005 friendly against Real Madrid. Interestingly enough, that match was my first at the venue formerly known as The Home Depot Center.
Lastly, to familiarize you with Husidic, below are a series of clips of Husidic's time with Chicago and a goal that he scored for Hammarby.
Bonus points for anyone that notices the huge amount of snow on camera in the last clip.
A.J. DeLaGarza is away on his first international tour with Guam and he's clearly already a focal point of the federation.
In a team photo taken before their match against Laos, which will kick off at 1 a.m. on Friday, DeLaGarza has already been placed at the center. Also included in Guam's squad is former Galaxy Under-18 forward Josh Borja, who can be seen on the top row donning the number 11. Borja played with the Galaxy U-18's during their inaugural season and was the first LA academy player to score a goal for a full international team.
Take a look below.
— Guam Football Assoc (@GuamFootball) November 14, 2013
CARSON, Calif. – The LA Galaxy locked down two vital pieces for the upcoming 2014 MLS regular season by announcing the re-signing of defender Todd Dunivant and the signing of midfielder Baggio Hušidić, but what impact will the pair have next year?
Dunivant has been the Galaxy’s “Mr. Consistency” for the past five years, by appearing in at least 25 matches each season. In 2013, Dunivant was again his reliable self as the left back made 25 appearances in league play while tallying two assists. During the team’s final media availability, the 32-year-old revealed that the deal will be keep him with the Galaxy for the next two seasons, where he should be able to continue serving as one of the team’s leaders on defense. That leadership could become pivotal as he mentors his deputy 23-year-old Greg Cochrane, who showcases the same type of workman-like play that has become a Dunivant staple. In his second year, Cochrane may make his own case for the left back position after a solid rookie season that saw him make 12 appearances, mostly filling in for Dunivant.
Hušidić is a more intriguing addition as he joins a potentially congested central midfield group for the Galaxy. The 26-year-old is coming off limited playing time with Hammarby as he made 41 appearances over two seasons with the Swedish Superettan club after a successful stint with the Chicago Fire. A tenacious midfielder displayed shades of developing into a two-way threat during his time with Chicago, but is likely to be used as a defensive option that will be expected to assist in the building of attacks. Where Hušidić fits in remains to be seen, however, as Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena would be required to drop either Marcelo Sarvas or Juninho to fit the former Hammarby player into his position in central midfield. Whichever player does start, however, will likely be the recipient of an uptick offensively as the Hušidić will be entrusted with the defensive responsibilities.
Thoughts on the moves?
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LA Galaxy goalkeeper Jaime Penedo has advanced to the "Gran Final" of FutbolMLS' Latino del Año 2013.
Penedo advanced past Colorado Rapids midfielder Hendry Thomas in the quarterfinals and will meet Real Salt Lake's Alvaro Saborio, FC Dallas goalkeeper Raul Fernandez, and reigning champion Houston Dynamo midfielder Boniek Garcia.
Robbie Keane has no intention of leaving Southern California.
The LA Galaxy captain told Sky Sports on Tuesday that he has “verbally agreed” to a two-year contract that may extend to three seasons which could make LA the final stop for the 33-year-old forward. The Irishman told Sky back in January that he had extended his initial deal with the Galaxy by another two seasons.
"I'm certainly excited about that and playing for the Galaxy in the future. I didn't think I was going to go there and then come back to the Premier League, but I'm enjoying my football there and the club has been very good to me,” Keane told Sky. "As soon as you hit that 30 age mark in football, people are reluctant to give you contracts but this will be the third contract I've signed since I've been there and it shows the faith they have in me.
Keane is coming off a season that saw him score 16 goals and 11 assists in 23 appearances during an MVP season. When speaking to Sky Sports ahead of Ireland’s friendlies against Latvia and Poland, the Galaxy captain admitted that he’s already begun the preparations of what he’ll do after hanging up his boots—even though he has no intention to do so any time soon.
"I've still got a good few years left in me. But I'm looking to do my coaching badges in January in Ireland,” Keane added. "The FAI has a good structure here to help players if they want to do that. It's something I'm passionate about and need to get into if I want to stay in the game."
"Since I've been there, it's been a strong league. It's a tough league because of the structure that works there with everyone competing at roughly the same level. Every team can beat every other, so it's very competitive,” Keane added. "When people come over to play in it, I always tell them, 'don't think you're coming over for a holiday'. There's a lot of pressure on the three designated players as people are expecting you to deliver all the time."
In an interview with LAGalaxy.com, LA Galaxy players Landon Donovan, Todd Dunivant and Jaime Penedo look back at the 2013 season.
We'll have more review content over the next few weeks.
Check out the video below...
Robbie Keane "excited" about the appointment of new Ireland manager Martin O'Neill and assistant Roy Keane
When Robbie Keane leads the Republic of Ireland on the field in their upcoming friendlies against Lativa and Poland, he’ll have a new managerial crew to play for.
Martin O’Neill was appointed Ireland manager earlier this month and quickly named former Manchester United legend Roy Keane as his number two. The pair will be entrusted to lead Ireland as they look to reach Euro 2016 in France on the heels of failing to advance from a fiercely competitive World Cup qualifying group, which led to the exit of former manager Giovanni Trapattoni.
The LA Galaxy captain, who is expected to take an offseason break to repair a nagging Achilles injury after the friendlies, admitted that he was quite excited about the appointment of O’Neill and the former Ireland captain.
“It’s two men who have the respect of the footballing world,” said Keane earlier this month. “It’s an appointment that everyone should be excited about, certainly, one that I’m excited about because they are two big strong characters that we’ve probably needed for some time.”
Keane and Ireland take on Latvia on Friday in Dublin before traveling to face Poland in Pozan on Nov. 19.
Mexico crushes New Zealand in playoff first leg, ex-LA Galaxy Academy player on the bench for New Zealand
Mexico has one foot in the 2014 World Cup after demolishing New Zealand 5-1 in the first leg of the intercontential playoff on Wednesday at the Estadio Azteca.
Orbie Peralta talied twice while Paul Aguilar, Raul Jimenez, and former New York Red Bulls defender Rafael Marquez each tallied once. New Zealand added a single goal late off a finish from Chris James that sets up a 5-1 aggregate score heading into the second leg next Wednesday in Wellington.
There was a Galaxy connection for the All Whites as former LA academy player Bill Tuiloma was on the bench for the defeat. Tuiloma played for the Galaxy Academy during their run to the 2011 Generation adidas Cup. A pair of photos of Tuiloma, who is currently with the Olympique de Marseille U-19’s in France, are below. He can be seen to the left of current Galaxy Homegrown defender Oscar Sorto in the center of the first photo and is the player in the yellow boots in the middle of the second image.
LA Galaxy Academy players Abraham Romero and Haji Wright were called up by U.S. Under-17 head coach Richie Williams for their upcoming friendly matches in Ft. Lauderdale against Canada.
The matches will serve as a prelude for an intense month of December for Williams' young players as they participate in the Nike International Friendlies and Development Academy Showcase, which will feature matches against Brazil, Portugal, and England.
The complete roster which features 10 players from California is below...
GOALKEEPERS (3): William Pulisic (Richmond Strikers; Mechanicsville, Va.), Abraham Romero (LA Galaxy Academy; Altadena, Calif.), Kevin Silva (PDA; Bethlehem, Pa.)
DEFENDERS (11): Hugo Arellano (Chivas USA Academy; Norwalk, Calif.), George Braima (Crew Soccer Academy; Columbus, Ohio), Pierre Da Silva (New York Soccer Club; Port Chester, N.Y.), Nikkye De Point (Revolution Empire; Rochester, N.Y.), Tanner Dieterich (TN Soccer Club; Nashville, Tenn.), Edwin Lara (Unattached; San Laredo, Calif.), Cristian Martinez (NJSA 04; Mine Hill, N.J.), John Nelson (Internationals; Medina, Ohio), Matthew Olosunde (New York Red Bulls Academy; Trenton, N.J.), Elijah Rice (Chicago Magic PSG; Highland Park, Ill.), Alexis Velela (San Diego Surf; San Diego)
MIDFIELDERS (9): Eric Calvillo (Real So Cal; Palmdale, Calif.), Ronaldo Escudero (Pateadores; Placentia, Calif.), Kyle Gurrieri (NJSA 04; Totowa, N.J.), Thomas McCabe (PDA; South Orange, N.J.),Weston McKennie (FC Dallas Academy; Little Elm, Teas.), Logan Panchot (St. Louis Scott Gallagher; St. Louis), Devin Vega (San Antonio Scorpions; San Antonio, Texas), Brian Zelaya (De Anza Force; San Mateo, Calif.), Alejandro Zendejas (FC Dallas Academy; El Paso, Texas)
FORWARDS (7): Kevin Coleman (FC Richmond; Warrenton, Va.), Joe Gallardo (Monterrey FC; San Diego), David Loera (Orlando City Lions; Orlando, Fla.), Jonathan Navarro (De Anza Force; San Jose, Calif.), Christian Pulisic (PA Classics; Hershey, Pa.), Sean Teixiera (New York Red Bulls Academy; Trumbull, Conn.), Haji Wright (LA Galaxy Academy; Los Angeles)
MLSsoccer.com ranked the top 50 best passers in MLS during the 2013 regular season and five LA Galaxy players made the cut.
Ranking players based on total passes, passes in their own half, the opponent’s half, and passing accuracy, MLSsoccer.com came up with the finest passers in the league. All players selected have played at least 17 games while also attempting at least 750 passes.
Coming in at number 10 on their list is Juninho who finished with a passing accuracy of 85.7 percent of his 1,748 total passes with 1,136 of his passes taking place in the opposition’s end. Marcelo Sarvas finished 23rd with an accuracy rate of 83.63 percent as 1,213 of his 1,790 passes took place in the opposing half.
A.J. DeLaGarza finished third with a passing accuracy of 82.83 percent with 423 of his 955 passes in the opposing team’s end. Finishing fourth for the Galaxy contingent was right back Sean Franklin who out of 1293 completed passes completed 837 in the opposing half while maintaining an accuracy of 81.83. Rounding out the list among LA players was Galaxy captain Robbie Keane who enjoyed a rate of 80.54 with 652 of his 776 in the opposition half.