CARSON, Calif. -- Another game, another fantastic performance for Juninho.
The LA Galaxy midfielder scored two impressive goals in Saturday night's 4-2 victory for the Galaxy over Toronto FC. Juninho opened the scoring in the 11th minute after a Luis Silva foul on Christian Wilhelmsson forced a free kick on the edge of the box that Juninho curled past goalkeeper Freddy Hall. The Brazilian added a second in the 33rd, firing a shot from distance that left Hall helpless. With his brace, Juninho has now scored seven goals on the season setting an MLS career high for the Brazilian.
“Every single time that there is space in front of me, I’m going to take a shot," said Juninho after the match. "And today, I just got lucky."
But even though the Brazilian was admittedly pleased with his performance, the goal was by no means his favorite as he admtited that the strike below from the July 4th, 2010 against the Seattle Sounders was his all time favorite.
What do you think? What's your favorite Juninho goal.
CARSON, Calif. -- Robbie Keane tallied his fourth brace of the season on Saturday as the LA Galaxy cruised to a 4-2 victory over Toronto FC.
The Irishman tallied two goals in three shots on the night, to his goal total on the season to 14, which places him among the top five of MLS' goalscorers this season. Keane scored the game's second goal in the 36th minute after an impressive pass from Mike Magee and then closed the scoring in stoppage time for LA's fourth goal of the night.
Below are Keane's thoughts on the match...
(On his two goals…)
KEANE: “The lads did well, we’re a bit disappointed with the goal that we conceded obviously, but you can’t expect them in this league to have a clean sheet every game. We try our best, but sometimes, you’re going to run up against difficult opposition. We looked in control tonight, but when you concede two goals and there’s just ten minutes left and you’re only winning by one goal, sometimes the nerves can get at you. But thankfully, we got the fourth goal and we knew it was over then.”
(On the role of himself and Juninho in LA's recent surge...)
KEANE: “I think that the whole team has been doing well. It’s not just down to individuals. Myself and Juni have been scoring goals lately, which is always nice for the team, but I think as a team, we’ve been quite solid. We look like a proper team, we’re doing things together, we’re attacking together, which is very, very important so we need to keep that going.”
(On the differences between last year’s stretch run and 2012…)
KEANE: “It’s the same really, you just try to play every game as if you want to win. Listen, for us, we know that the start of the season kind of killed us, but that’s the way it goes. It’s important that when you have such a bad start, that you bounce back and we certainly did do that. At one stage, it looked like we weren’t even going to get to the playoffs so to look where we came from since then, it’s been massive, massive progress. It’s just important for us to keep that going.”
(On whether the team talks about finishing in the top 3….)
KEANE: “You always want to finish as high as possible, we don’t sit down every morning and have a conversation about it, but it’s certainly that we want to finish as high as possible. For us to get first will probably be difficult, with all the points that we are behind, but we just keep plugging away and try to get as many points on the board to see where we finished. Of course, we want to finish in the top 3.”
(On being in the top 5 in league goalscorers in 2012…)
KEANE: “Not really, no. It’s always nice to score goals, but I’m not one that needs to look at charts and stuff like that. I find out most of my information from you guys so thank you…I’ve never set out targets because as a player, palying so long, you can get injuries along the way and setbacks so I think when you stop jumping the gun, I’m one of these players that never thinks too far ahead.”
CARSON, Calif. -- With a comprehensive 4-2 victory over Toronto FC, the LA Galaxy officially clinched a berth in the Western Conference.
The win not only gives LA a playoff berth, but also puts them into a tie with Real Salt Lake for the second spot in the West. LA currently hold the total goals scored tiebreaker on RSL.
We're just hours away from tonight's match against Toronto FC.
The Alumni vs. Under-18 team is going on right now and I'll have a report on the match once it's complete.
Be sure to look at LAGalaxy.com staff writer Larry Morgan's preview of the match. Remember that with a win, the Galaxy can clinch a berth in the 2012 MLS playoffs.
Also, check out my Training Notebook from Friday where we address the status of David Beckham and Landon Donovan
Lastly, read my Three Points to the match.
LAGalaxy.com's video department has cooked up a preview ahead of tonight's match against Toronto FC.
Check out the video below for thoughts from A.J. DeLaGarza, Landon Donovan and Bruce Arena on TFC.
The LA Galaxy first team is not the only team in action this weekend as the Galaxy Academy return to action on Saturday.
LA's Under-16's and Under-18's will face off against Temecula-based youth club Arsenal FC on Saturday morning at Riverside Community College. The match will be a reunion for one of LA's finest youth products, midfielder Raul Mendiola, who was a star at Arsenal for nearly three years before joining the Galaxy Academy. Mendiola, who has spent considerable time training with the first team as of late will likely be joined by right back Oscar Sorto and Homegrown player Jack McBean when he faces off his former club.
Below are Mendiola's thoughts on facing his old youth club...
MENDIOLA: "I feel good that I'm playing against my old team and [Arsenal head coach] PJ [Brown], but even though it's going to be a little bit scary to face my old team and PJ, I'm just going to try my best. It should be fun to play against Arsenal because they're like family to me. They know what to expect from me, but no matter what the result, it'll be fun to play against them."
It's gameday, but before we look at Saturday's match, I have one powerful video for all Galaxy fans to check out.
MLSsoccer.com's stellar videographer Scott Riddell profiled LA Galaxy midfielder Hector Jimenez in his inspirational "Journey to Excellence" series. Jimenez and his father Mauricio Jimenez discusses his father's role in helping him go from Huntington Park to UC Berkeley to the LA Galaxy.
Watch the video below.
CARSON, Calif. -- David Beckham appears set to miss his third straight match due to a sprained left ankle on Saturday.
The 37-year-old English midfielder missed training on Friday may not appear on Saturday against Toronto.
CARSON, Calif. -- One win is all that separates the LA Galaxy from moving one step closer to defending their 2011 MLS Cup title.
With a victory over the worst team in MLS, Toronto FC the Galaxy will clnch a berth in the 2012 MLS playoffs. LA head into the match as heavy favorites due to their 7-0-2 record in all competition while TFC have not registered a win since July 18th, going 0-6-3 in that span. But despite the completely opposite records of both teams as of late, the best way to describe is simple, "It's a trap." During the nine game winless run, Toronto has lost only one game by more than one goal, but throughout the season, TFC have shown an inability to close out games having conceded 17 goals in the last 15 minutes this season.
TFC are likely to be led by the attacking duo of Ryan Johnson and East Los Angeles native Luis Silva, who have shown an ability to create numerous scoring chances despite their poor finishing. A playoff berth hanging in the balance, Galaxy forward Landon Donovan and A.J. DeLaGarza admit that LA is not taking Toronto for granted.
DONOVAN: "We weren't exactly our best at the beginning of the year, but they're a much improved team even from when we played them and I think that Paul Mariner has done a really good job with them. You can tell that they have a different attitude and a different mentality. They really believe that they can win every game, regardless of where they are in the standings, when you watch them play, they believe that they can win every game. They've played a lot of good playoff teams very difficult, they've won some games, they've taken points from some teams so we have to be alert."
DELAGARZA:"It'd be nice to clinch no matter what, we have five games left and a single win would put us in. It'd defnitely be good to get it out of the way and out of our minds against a team that knocked us out of a competition that we thought taht we could have won or at least, gone pretty far. It's a big game, these are the most dangerous teams to play, they have nothing to lose so they can go after it. They don't have to sit and defend if they don't want to. We just have to be aware of that and limit their chances."
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy's 2012 campaign began with a shock exit in the Quarterfinals of the CONCACAF Champions League at the hands of Toronto FC, but now nearly six months later, LA will have their shot at redemption against TFC.
LA's exit from the CCL sent the Galaxy stumbling out of the gate, with the club even being mired in last in the Western Conference at one point. But now, on the heels of their rematch with a TFC that is currently in last place in MLS, LA have the ability to not only eliminate past demons, but clinch a playoff berth in the process as a win over Toronto can put LA into the 2012 MLS Playoffs.
Below are thoughts from Todd Dunivant, Landon Donovan and Mike Magee on facing TFC...
DUNIVANT: "They’ve had our number this year at least. Traditionally, they’ve done well against, they always get up for the game whether it’s at our place or theirs, they’re up for it. Last year, they came back and scored a couple of late goals to tie it up and this year, they knocked us out of the Champions League so there is certainly some history there and they’ve done well against us so we’re not going to take this game lightly by any means."
DONOVAN: “That left a sour taste in all of our mouths. We’re not happy with the way that finished and we’re lucky that we get a chance at redemption.”
MAGEE: “ Toronto's got our number so we're definitely not overlooking them. I don't know if it's a rivalry, but it’s definitely something that when you found out you’re playing them, you remember what it felt like to be eliminated in Champions League. It definitely left a bad taste in our mouth.”