CARSON, Calif. – Gyasi Zardes took plenty of lickings during the LA Galaxy reserves 4-3 victory over the Los Angeles Blues on Monday.
The forward was knocked around by the Blues defenders several times towards goal; he endured a hard collision with goalkeeper Steve Gonzalez just before the end of the first half. Not to be outdone, he was kicked square in the neck in the 49th minute leading to a Hector Jimenez penalty kick that resulted in the game-winning-goal.
However, Zardes did not let a little physicality stop him from scoring a goal and two assists in LA’s win.
“It felt so great scoring a goal. I haven’t scored a goal in so long so it feels good to score again,” said Zardes. “It really does well for our confidence [as a team], but we’re steady working together and learning each other like Chandler [Hoffman] up top, our chemistry is just building.”
Without a doubt, Zardes was the most dynamic player on the field as his runs seemed too much for the Blues defense and one he exited the match in the 55th minute, the Galaxy attack lost some dimension as the USL Pro side battled back to within one goal of an equalizer.
Ahead of a massive road trip that will see the Galaxy play three games in nine-days, Zardes’ performance may lead to even greater minutes with LA’s first team.
Gyasi was extremely dangerous in getting in behind [the defense]. He scored a goal, created another goal and was an absolute handful,” Galaxy Assistant coach and Reserve League head coach Curt Onalfo said. “I was pleased with his performance and I was a little worried because it was a physical game and he was taking a lot of knocks and that’s part of the reason that we took him off early because we want to makes sure that he’s in consideration for this weekend.”
LAGalaxy.com has provided highlights of the LA Galaxy's 4-3 Reserve League win over USL Pro side Los Angeles Blues.
Check it out below...
CARSON, Calif. -- It looked like it be smooth sailing for the LA Galaxy reserves against the Los Angeles Blues, but a poor second half turned the match into a nailbiter.
The Galaxy entered the 50th minute up 4-0 on the USLPro off goals from Michael Stephens, Chandler Hoffman, Gyasi Zardes and Hector Jimenez, but the Blues roared back with three unanswered goals of their own to end the game 4-3. An own goal by Rafael Garcia in the 52nd minute sparked the rally for the Blues before they pulled to within one with goals from Shay Spitz and Allan Russell.
Zardes and Jimenez both enjoyed stellar matches as each ended the game with one goal and two assists.
The Galaxy's next Reserve League match will see LA once again take on the Blues on June 15 at Titan Stadium on the campus of Cal-State Fullerton.
The LA Galaxy Reserves will take on USLPro side Los Angeles Blues at 7 p.m. at The Home Depot Center Track and Field Stadium.
Fans attending the match can enter The Home Depot Center through Gate A and park in lot 13. But if you can't make it, then you can watch it online at the USLPro website.
I'm expecting to join broadcaster Marc Serber at some point during the match. Be sure to tune in for my comments on the broadcast.
If you're following along on the video side then feel free to leave comments about the match.
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CARSON, Calif. –The U.S. U-20’s learned their draw for the upcoming Toulon Tournament in France, which will serve as the final preparation before this summer's 2013 U-20 World Cup in Turkey.
The tournament will feature 10 nations in two five-team groups across a 12-day span. The U.S. was placed in Group A alongside Colombia, Congo DR, South Korea and host France. Meanwhile, Group B includes Belgium, Brazil, Mexico, Nigeria and Portugal.
The U.S. will open the tournament against France on May 28 then take on Colombia on May 30 and Congo DR on June 1. The U-20’s will wrap up group play on June 5 against South Korea. If the U.S. win their group or finish second, they will play in either the Championship or third place match depending on their result.
“It’s going to be a big step for the U-20’s going into that tournament,” said LA Galaxy forward and U.S. U-20 regular Jose Villarreal. “It’s not really about winning the games; it’s about being good as a team and getting ready for Turkey, which is even bigger of a stage for us. Obviously, we gotta perform well to show the people what we got.”
During the U-20’s recent camp at The Home Depot Center last month, U.S. U-20 head coach Tab Ramos stressed that building a team identity will be key to success not only in France, but in Turkey as well.
“I think one of the things that Tab said during the past camp is that the tournament in France will be about coming together as one team and having each other’s backs and making each other a lot better on the field and off the field. That’s what we’re going to focus on in France,” said Villarreal. “We play to win and we want to win the games, but if not, we just have to focus on working together as a team.”
Villarreal added that he was hopeful that fellow Galaxy Academy alums—and close personal friends of the LA forward—Jeffrey Payeras and Oscar Sorto will make the squad for Toulon as well as Turkey. The LA Galaxy Academy members may be joined by one high-profile addition as Herta Berlin defender John Anthony Brooks may be considering joining the U.S. U-20's for the tournament in France.
The U.S. U-20 World Cup campaign begins on June 21 against Spain. Ramos’ group will round out group play with matches on June 24 against France and Ghana on June 27.
Can the U.S. win the Toulon tournament? Will Sorto and Payeras make the squad?
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Todd Dunivant and Robbie Keane were both spotted at LA Galaxy training during the portion available for media on Tuesday.
Following training, head coach Bruce Arena stated that he expected all players to be available for selection for this Saturday's clash against Vancouver Whitecaps FC.
As for Dunivant and Keane: "They're moving along fine," Arena said.
But Arena was quick to note that niether player will participate in Tuesday's Reserve League match against the Los Angeles Blues.
Do you expect Todd Dunivant and Robbie Keane to play on Saturday?
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CARSON, Calif. – Following Sunday’s 1-0 defeat to the Houston Dynamo, Sean Franklin wanted one thing: to forget about his showing in the LA Galaxy loss.
The right back was decent on the defensive end, but seemed to struggle with his distribution as six of his seven crosses were unsuccessful while he was also dispossessed a total of 19 times on the night.
After the game, Franklin was brutally honest about his showing.
“I think that my performance wasn’t the greatest; I have to do better in the final third and making the right pass and the right crosses,” Franklin told LA Galaxy Insider. “I thought defensively I was okay, but my passing and crossing was awful. I just made the right decision knowing late in the game that we need balls in the box. Quality balls, not just balls whipped in, but good service and at the end of the day, I wasn’t good enough.”
It didn’t help that the player that he was assigned to mark, Houston’s Andrew Driver enjoyed a strong game that included the game’s only goal in the 56th minute of play.
“He’s a great player. He’s crafty, he’s quick. He scored a good goal tonight. I thought in the first half, he was a little bit quiet, but in the second half, he came out and got his goal,” said Franklin. “Give their team credit, they got their goal and they defended well. On the day, it was just something that the team and myself need a better game.”
This week Franklin will have a chance to redeem himself as the Galaxy hit the road for a three match trip that begins on Saturday against Vancouver Whitecaps FC.
“It’s tough, we just have to forget about this one and figure out what we did wrong and get this right,” Franklin said. “We have a long week till the game so we have plenty of time to get our mind right.”
CARSON, Calif. -- The decision not to award a caution of any color to Tally Hall for his foul on Jose Villarreal that resulted in a penalty kick opportunity that was missed by Landon Donovan drew plenty of heat from LA on Sunday, but on Tuesday, the Professional Referee Organization responded with their complete explaination of the call.
Fourth official Ricardo Salazar gave his explaination of the call after the game, but in PRO's article, the organization gets far more in depth on their decision not to award a caution to Hall.
Read PRO's explaination of the play below...
LAGalaxy.com has provided video of LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena's press conference in LA's 1-0 defeat to the Houston Dynamo.
Check it out below...
CARSON, Calif. – It’s starting to come together for Gyasi Zardes. The speed and the dynamic movements are clearly there, but there is still work to be done before he finds the back of the net.
The LA Galaxy Homegrown forward went 35 minutes in the LA Galaxy’s 1-0 defeat to the Houston Dynamo on Sunday. The match was Zardes’ second after undergoing surgery for a broken fifth metatarsal, Zardes admitted that all fitness concerns were gone, but he’ll need to be sharper in order to contribute.
“I felt pretty good. Once I came on I tried to contribute as much as possible,” Zardes told reporters. “We had a couple of opportunities; we were just unlucky (that) the ball didn’t go in the back of the net.”
The energy was certainly there in spades for Zardes, who repeatedly found his way behind the Houston defense, but at times, an extra touch turned a shot on goal into a clearance or a save. His best chance came in the 66th minute when he cut through the Dynamo defense, only to see his shot fired into the chest of Houston ‘keeper Tally Hall for one of LA’s two shots on goal on the night.
After an uneven performance, Zardes understands that he’ll have to be quicker with his trigger in the future.
“With more practice comes consistency and I understand I have to keep practicing and just make sure my head is up so I can look at teammates and put it in the box,” Zardes said. “I definitely need to work on being more of a threat and more aggressive, instead of looking for a pass sometimes just going on to goal and being the initial threat.”
Arena agreed: “Gyasi had his moments; technically he could have been a little bit better. It is going to take him a little bit of time.”
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