CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy will likely be without their newest signing Christian Wilhelmsson for Sunday's match against the Colorado Rapids.
Wilhelmsson is currently listed as questionable for Sunday's match due to a left calf strain that has prevented him from participating in the club's final three training sessions this week. However, with that is of little concern to Galaxy captain Landon Donovan, who attests that LA can more than handle the Swede's absence
“He looks like he got banged up a little bit, we’ll see,” said Donovan. “We’ve developed a really, really deep team so there’s a lot of guys that can step up if he can’t play.”
CARSON, Calif. -- David Beckham is hopeful that he'll be able to his first appearance in nearly a month against the Colorado Rapids on Sunday.
Beckham has become a steady fixture on the Galaxy training ground this week after missing the past three matches due to a left ankle sprain. Although Beckham is listed as questionable for Sunday's match, head coach Bruce Arena told reporters on Thursday that the English midfielder is "getting better" and "moving forward" ahead of Sunday's clash in Colorado.
On Friday, Beckham discussed his availability for Sunday in the quotes below....
BECKHAM: “I’m getting there. It’s obviously difficult being out a few weeks and coming back, but I’ve had a good week of training and I should be okay for this weekend.”
(On potentially going 90 minutes in Colorado...)
BECKHAM: “We have to wait and see. Obviously, you have to build it up again and judge how I feel during the game and what Bruce and the physios think so hopefully I can play 90, but with the altitude and it is my first game back after three-and-a-half weeks so I hope that I can do it.”
CARSON, Calif. – Christian Wilhelmsson's status for Sunday’s match against the Colorado Rapids is up in the air.
The Swedish winger was listed on the club’s injury report on Friday as questionable with a left ankle sprain. Wilhelmsson has missed the last two training sessions, but was receiving treatment during Friday’s session.
Following Friday’s training session, head coach Bruce Arena told reporters that Wilhelmsson would be “fine”, but he did not know if he’d feature or travel to Colorado.
With the Puerto Rico Islanders victory over Isidro Metapán on Thursday, the LA Galaxy sealed their berth in the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals.
However, the job is far from done for the Galaxy as LA still has one match left to play on October 25 against Metapán in El Salvador. That match will be vital in terms of the seeding process that will determine which the match ups for the quarterfinals.
Following practice on Thursday, rookie midfielder Rafael Garcia discussed qualification and the second team's role in the match in El Salvador.
GARCIA: "It's very nice, now we just need to do the work and take care of business over there, that way that the whole seeding process will benefit us in the long run. We're thinking about going out there and getting a win. For us younger players, just knowing that we helped in the process is definitely a great feeling and it's not going to be easy since it is a hostile environment there, but we just have to go out there and do our best so we can hopefully get that win."
CARSON, Calif. -- Marcelo Sarvas has become an integral part of LA Galaxy midfield, but months ago, he was fighting for a playoff spot.
Following Thursday's practice session, I caught up with Sarvas' who discussed his recent run of form and the role that David Beckham's absence played in his rise.
Below Sarvas discusses the role that his compatriot Juninho has played in his rise..
SARVAS: “We solve many problems just by talking during the game. It goes two ways, he’s helped me and I’ve helped him. It’s something that is mutual and natural. We help each other with our position and if there is something that he doesn’t see during the game then I do my best to put him in a good spot. We both help one another.”
The LA Galaxy have clinched a berth in the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals and they didn't even need to kick a ball to do so.
With the Puerto Rico Islanders 3-0 victory over Isidro Metapán in Puerto Rico on Thursday, the Galaxy have sealed the top spot in CCL group 5. The Galaxy close out the group stages on Oct. 25 against Metapán in El Salvador and even though LA have qualified for the quarterfinals, their match against Metapán will still be vital in determining the club's overall seeding for the knock out round.
Unlike past tournaments, the winners from the eight groups will be seeded according to their record, with the club with the best record taking on the club with the worst, the second best record taking on the seventh best and so on. If clubs have identical records after the group stage then the rankings will be determined by the following tie-breakers, listed in order: 1. Total goal difference, 2. Most goals Scored, 3. Most Goals Scored Away from home 4. Most Wins 5. Most Away Wins 6. Drawing of Lots. Remember that the club with the highest ranking will host the second leg of the quarterfinals series.
It remains to be seen what type of squad that head coach Bruce Arena will use in the final match in El Salvador as the game is in the middle of two important league games against the San Jose Earthquakes on Oct. 21 at Buck Shaw Stadium and the regular season finale against the Seattle Sounders on Oct. 28.
Based on the tie-breakers, if the CCL ended today, the quarterfinal stage would look like this:
1. Santos Laguna (MEX) vs. 8. Alajuelense (CRC)
2. Monterrey (MEX) vs. 7. Xelajú (GUAT)
3. Seattle Sounders (USA) vs. 6. Houston Dynamo (USA)
4. Herediano (CRC) vs. 5. LA Galaxy (USA)
Happy to see the Galaxy through to the quarterfinals? What type of squad do you expect Arena to use in El Salvador?
Share your thoughts below.
LA Galaxy broadcasters Mark Rogondino and Cobi Jones have provided their "View from the Booth" preview for Sunday's match against the Colorado Rapids.
Christian Wilhelmsson is providing a new attacking dimension to the LA Galaxy and it's causing teams around MLS to take notice.
In LA's 4-2 victory over Toronto FC, Wilhelmsson was active on both sides of the flank and despite starting on the right hand side, often drifted to the left when need be, causing shifts in the Galaxy midfield. Frequently when Wilhelmsson would swap flanks, it would allow midfielders Mike Magee, Marcelo Sarvas and Juninho to rotate throughout the midfield (check out the chalkboard from that match here) causing problems for the Toronto defenders.
Read more about the midfield adjustment here, but for a defensive perspective, I spoke with right back Sean Franklin about his own adaptations with Wilhelmsson on the flanks...
FRANKLIN: "It’s a little bit of adjustment; each player that has played on the wing is different. Christian is different from Magee, Magee is different from Hector [Jimenez]. Everyone is different so when we’re practicing, it’s about getting the repetitions of how the player is playing. I think that it is coming along well with Christian, not just on my side on the right, but Todd [Dunivant] as well on the left side with Magee. It’s been a good team effort."
CARSON, Calif. -- Scoreboard watching has become a regular occurrence with the LA Galaxy as they look to move up the table in the Western Conference, but on Thursday, their focus will be on the CONCACAF Champions League.
If the Puerto Rico Islanders defeat Salvadoran club Isidro Metapán (5pm/Univision Deportes Network), then the Galaxy will secure a spot in the quarterfinals of the CCL for the second consecutive season. An Islanders victory would prevent Metapán--who are currently at three points, four behind LA's seven-- from tying the Galaxy for the top spot in Group 5 even if Metapán were to defeat LA in their final CCL match on October 25 in El Salvador.
A victory would help the Galaxy in CCL, but also in MLS play as the trip to El Salvador is sandwiched in-between LA's final two games of the season--a road fixture against San Jose Earthquakes on Oct. 21 and the season finale at The Home Depot Center against the Seattle Sounders on Oct. 28.
Following LA's training session on Thursday, Marcelo Sarvas and Sean Franklin admitted that they're throwing their full support behind Puerto Rico...
SARVAS: “It’s good. One of our targets is to qualify for the next stage in CONCACAF, if Puerto Rico can help us today then it’ll be good and we can be focused more on our MLS games. Of course, you save travel and game time so it can help us.”
FRANKLIN: “It’d be nice to get a little help from Puerto Rico, but at the end of the day, if we got to go down there and handle business then we got to do what we got to do. If we clinch today or we don’t clinch and we have to go down and get a win in El Salvador, the team is prepared for that.”
In an interview with Joe Tutino, the LA Galaxy's Swedish winger Christian Wilhelmsson discusses his new life in LA.
During his interview, Wilhelmsson touched upon his adaptation to Southern California and admitted that he is still on the radar for Sweden's national team heading into the next round of World Cup qualifiers.
Check out the video below...