Beat

17 September 1:23 pm

NEW ORLEANS— While the LA Galaxy’s flight refuels in New Orleans on the way to Puerto Rico, reporters caught up with LA Galaxy forward Edson Buddle to discuss his return to the lineup.

Buddle went 12 minutes in an effective substitute stint during the Galaxy’s 2-0 victory over the Colorado Rapids last Friday.

Buddle's quotes are below...

(On his rehab…)

BUDDLE: “Every day, I feel like my knee is getting stronger. Some days a little sorer than others, but each and every day I feel more comfortable on the field.

(On getting used to being out on the field…)

BUDDLE: “Getting used to the timing, getting used to everything. My knee is still not as strong as my left. I think that I have to keep strengthening it and work on my balance. It’ll all come together.

(On whether getting his game time in spurts is helping his recovery…)

BUDDLE: “That’s what it is going to take. You can’t just throw me in there for 90 minutes; you have to build up the minutes. I think that’s what Bruce is doing.”

(On the most that he could play at the moment…)

BUDDLE: “Right now, the most I’ve played is sixty minutes and hopefully I can get 80 or 75 minutes. I lasted sixty, but as a player, you always want to play the whole game.”

(On understanding that he has to play in increments…)

BUDDLE: “Yeah, my mind tells me one thing, but my body says the other.”

(On potentially getting a start soon…)

BUDDLE: “We’ll see how Bruce does it. Anytime that he wants me, I’m available and I’m ready.”

(On facing Puerto Rico and what he remembers about his last trip to Puerto Rico…)

BUDDLE: “It was a tough game, we had to win. It was humid, the field was very bumpy and I know that it won’t be an easy place to play. I was surprised about how many people came out to watch the game so I’m expecting a good crowd.”

(On whether this trip is a happier one than the one in 2010…)

BUDDLE: “I agree. The tables are turned, it’s the other way around. It’s a different team  and a little more experienced.”

(On the importance of road victories in the new CCL format…)

BUDDLE: “Every win and every goal counts. You just want to win and advance.”

(On Puerto Rico being one loss from elimination…)

BUDDLE: “They have a lot to play for. I’m sure they remember the loss in LA so I’m sure that it’s going to be hard game…I know that it didn’t rub them the right way, us beating them 4-0.”  

17 September 11:08 am

 

In my feature profiling Rafael Garcia, there were tons of great things said about the midfielder that didn't make the piece.

Below are a selection of quotes from Garcia, Sean Franklin (who was Garcia's teammate during his first season at Cal State-Northridge), his Canoga Park High School coach Jake Gwin and his father also named Rafael Garcia.

(On being a father and a pro athlete...)

GARCIA: "It’s awesome. I love every single second of it. It was hard especially in my college years when I was finishing up school, but now, I have a lot more time which is great when we’re around because when we travel I don’t get to see my son or my girlfriend as much. It’s great I love it, I get a lot of time with my son and it’s a lot of trips to the park and the beach. It’s been great, nothing has been easy, but now I’m at a point where I’m able to balance everything in my life as far as my personal life and my professional life and my social life. It’s all very new in a way, but I just take it day by day and the time that I spend with my family is the time that I cherish the most."

(On people describing him as a hard working person...)

GARCIA: It’s very flattering that people consider me a person that is hard working, ambitious and won’t take no for an answer. I feel like that has been my goal from day one to be that person that never gives up and is persistent. For me, it’s very flattering and humbling and I have to keep that mentality if I do then who knows what will happen. The sky is the limit.

(On his perception of Garcia...)

FRANKLIN: "To see him get to where he has and work hard and now be one of my teammates is great. It's good to see a fellow Matador in the league. All credit to him, he's a humble person a hard worker and he deserves to be here."

(On his excitement to see Garcia become a professional...)

GWIN: "When he came to me and told me that he and Lilly were having a kid. I took a deep breath and I shook his hand and said to him that 'you’re going to be a great father.' I knew that he was going to raise a great kid and provide for him. I was obviously worried that my other kids weren’t able to do that. I was never concerned for him. He would be great, he has a greet family that supports him. He has a great kid and a great structure around him and I’m just proud and when he first signed his contract, I texted him obviously congratulations, but also ‘I’m happy for Isaiah” that he gets to grow up watching his dad play professional soccer and that is unique and rare. I was as much as happy for Isaiah as I was for him."

(On Garcia's family oriented lifestyle...)

R. GARCIA Sr. "Every day, he goes to the practice and then comes back to the house. He loves his family and he wants to stay with them all the time. I always told him ‘God, family and work’ were important and if you can do your job then your family will be okay. "

17 September 11:05 am

There are some stories that you just enjoy telling and I can honestly say that my piece on LA Galaxy rookie Rafael Garcia is one of those.

I wrote this feature on Garcia and how the ability to be a father to his three year old son Isaiah has helped him as he begins his professional career.

Added quotes on the piece from key members of Garcia's life can be found here

Feel free to comment on the piece below. 

17 September 9:29 am

Happy Monday Everyone,

It's time for the seventh edition of "Ask the Insider." 

Today's question is from Christy Jacobs Blackman,who asks: "Do you think Christian Wilhelmssons arrival will change the dynamics of the team? In what ways?"

The acquisition of Christian “Chippen” Wilhelmsson not only changes the offensive dimensions for the LA Galaxy, but provides the club with their first true wide threat since the days of Cobi Jones.

Galaxy supporters got a taste of this during last Friday’s 2-0 victory over the Colorado Rapids as Wilhelmsson showed not just a willingness to create going forward, but a defensive ability that could serve well with overlapping full backs Todd Dunivant and Sean Franklin. Throughout the match with Colorado, Wilhelmsson’s integration into the Galaxy offense could be seen with each passing minute as he worked out a few early kinks—mostly thanks to a halftime conversation with Franklin---and ultimately scored his first goal in MLS during his 61 minute stint.  

But perhaps, where the Swede will be most valuable is in his ability to play at a high level on both the right and left flanks, which provides a new dimension to the Galaxy attack. This versatility allows head coach Bruce Arena to change the point of attack when necessary and use Wilhelmsson’s speed and dribbling ability to target opposition full backs and provide pressure that could lead to scoring chances.   

 The benefits of Wilhelmsson’s arrival are not limited to matches, however, as he is expected to become a key figure in the Galaxy locker room.  With experience in many of the top leagues in Europe, Wilhelmsson’s will be able to provide valuable knowledge to a number of LA’s promising youngsters, most specifically winger Hector Jimenez.  Although the arrival of Wilhelmsson may mean fewer minutes for Jimenez, with the Swedish International serving as his mentor, it could further expand Jimenez’s potential. 

--

Thanks Christy, you can get your tickets by e-mailing socialmedia@lagalaxy.com. For everyone else, remember to leave your questions on the LA Galaxy Facebook page following the club's next match against the Puerto Rico Islanders on September 19th for the chance to have your question featured and win tickets to an upcoming Galaxy game.

15 September 7:26 pm

In the second and final installment of his interview with Time Warner Cable Deportes'  Enrique Gutiérrez, LA Galaxy captain Landon Donovan discusses being a fan of basketball and the importance of  Time Warner Cable SportsNet and Time Warner Cable Deportes...

15 September 12:27 am

CARSON, Calif. -- A few notes and thoughts from the LA Galaxy's 2-0 victory over the Colorado Rapids. 

*Marcelo Sarvas further solidified his starting spot in the LA Galaxy midfield with his first two assists of his MLS career on Friday night -- a stat which shocked myself and many other journalists, who have been raving about the play of Sarvas. The Brazilian was a danger throughout the match and his midfield partnership with Juninho proved too much for Colorado to handle on both sides of the ball. 

*Christian "Chippen" Wilhelmsson still has a ways to go as he integrates himself into the team, but he performed well and earned considerable praise from his teammates after his debut. With his form improving and the continued development from Hector Jimenez -- who also had a strong 30 minute shift coming on for Wilhelmsson-- the LA Galaxy's flank play is rapidly improving. 

*Robbie Keane has nine goals in his last 14 MLS appearances

*Edson Buddle made a brief 12 minute cameo, coming on for Landon Donovan, but the forward was effective and nearly scored a goal late. Following the match, head coach Bruce Arena claimed that we are close to seeing the "Edson of old." 

*With the victory, the LA Galaxy are now tied for third place in the Western Conference with Real Salt Lake. Due to their superior goals scored number, (LA has scored 50 goals to RSL's 38) LA is now in control of the third spot and just a single point behind the Seattle Sounders. The Galaxy are level on games played with RSL, but have played two fewer games than Seattle. Remember, LA has matches against RSL (10/6), Seattle (10/28) and first place San Jose Earthquakes (10/21). 

*Lastly, be sure to check out my Three Points to the match. 

15 September 12:12 am

CARSON, Calif. -- Christian Wilhelmsson earned high praise from his LA Galaxy teammates in his MLS debut.

The Swede scored a goal in 61 minutes of action in his first game, contributing on both sides of the field for the LA. 

Below are thoughts from Wilhelmsson's Galaxy teammates and head coach Bruce Arena on Chippen's debut.

ARENA:  "We went into the game hoping that we’d get sixty minutes out of him and we managed that. Obviously the goal was an important goal. Probably not the best goal in his career, but we’re going to take it, it was an important goal for our team tonight. But I think that he’s going to be a good addition for our team. He showed experience on the field, excellent first touch. He understands how to play on both sides of the ball so I think that he’s certainly going to be a player that is going to help us in the stretch run.”

LANDON DONOVAN: "It was his first game so we got to iron out some kinks with all of us. We have to figure out how he wants to play. But he contributed, not the most beautiful goal, but it counts and I thought that he played a really solid 60 minutes." 

SEAN FRANKLIN:“As we train more and play more games, we should link up better at times. We talked at half time about getting each other some space to open up defenders and I think that over time, it’s going to be a good thing having him on the wing near us…He played well for us in his first game and he got a goal so it’s all about looking to the next game and getting things better so we can link up.”

OMAR GONZALEZ: "It was great. He gave some width and was able to make them keep an eye on them because he was getting behind them. He kept the ball for us and he scored the goal so I think that it was a great debut for him."

MARCELO SARVAS: "It’s good. He’s coming, he needs some time to get in shape and to understand the game here in MLS, but he did well. First game, first goal, he did very well."

14 September 11:50 pm

CARSON, Calif. -- It was quite the debut for the newest member of the LA Galaxy, Swedish midfielder Christian Wilhelmsson. 

In 61 minutes of action, Wilhelmsson scored his first career MLS goal and was active on both sides of the ball in the Galaxy's 2-0 victory.  Playing on the right flank, Wilhelmsson combined well with right back Sean Franklin, but it was clear that there were still kinks to be worked out in the pair's partnership. 

Below are Wilhelmsson's thoughts on his debut and a video of his goal...

(On his debut...)

“I didn’t think that I would score today and it was a pleasure. I’m just happy that we got the three points and I that got the goal of course is great.”

(On how he felt he connected with his new teammates...)

“From time to time alright and there was some misunderstanding sometimes, but it’s been two weeks and we’re getting to know each other more and more every day so it will be better absolutely.”

(On his goal...)

“It was a great feeling, a big relief. Of course a goal in my first game is amazing. I’m just glad that we could get the three points. … A goal is a goal. I have to thanks the keeper; he helped me a little bit though.”

14 September 11:20 pm

CARSON, Calif. -- Robbie Keane's thoughts from tonight's LA Galaxy victory.

Keane has now scored nine goals in his last 14 league appearances. 

Below are Keane's thoughts on his performance and his video interview with LAGalaxy.com after the match...

(On his scoring run...)

KEANE: I feel the same as aI always do. You get chances, you put them away. So lucky enough the team is doing well, that's the most important." 

(On the buildup to his goal...)

KEANE: "It was a good play from us, we kept a few passes and then Landon played me in and lucky for me, I got the goal."

(On Wilhelmsson's debut...)

KEANE: "He did well. It's his first game, obviously it's going to be difficult. He got tired towards the end, which is natural coming from where he came from and he's only here, what ten days or os? He did well. It's good that he got the goal, even though the goalkeeper should ahve saved it. But they all count so he'll benefit from these minutes."