The UCLA Bruins and their heavy LA Galaxy Academy contingent will play in the NCAA College Cup final on Sunday against Virginia (9 a.m. PT on ESPNU) at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina.
UCLA reached the championship game after dispatching the Providence Friars with a 3-2 victory in double overtime thanks to a golden goal from defender Chase Gasper. The Bruins’ Larry Nadjock and Providence striker Mac Steeves traded goals during regulation.
Galaxy Academy graduate Brian IIoski led the LA contingent with 80 minutes played in the victory while Christian Chavez (47 minutes played), Grady Howe (76 minutes played), and Willie Raygoza (14 minutes played) each made appearances.
They'll face Virginia, who rose to soccer prominence under the leadership of Bruce Arena, who led the Cavaliers to five titles in 18 years as the team's head coach. The Cavaliers reached the final by defeating the University of Maryland-Baltimore County 1-0 earlier on Friday.
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy saw none of their players selected by Orlando City SC and New York City FC in the 2014 MLS Expansion Draft.
The player action is not over, however, as the league will hold its wavier draft at 1:30 p.m. PT.
More on who will be available in that draft shortly.
LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena on New England Revolution boss Jay Heaps: "He's an outstanding coach"
CARSON, Calif. -- LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena will be the elder statesman on Sunday when he takes on fourth-year New England Revolution head coach Jay Heaps.
On paper, the gap in experience between the pair could not be more different.
Arena, a four time MLS Cup champion, will be coaching in his seventh final while Heaps will lead the Revs for the very first time. Although there is a considerable experience gap between the two head coaches, Arena admires the growth that Heaps has shown in four years of coaching the Revolution.
"He's a person that I recruited at the University of Virgina, but he chose to go to Duke, so I hold that against him a little bit. He was a great athlete in both soccer and basketball, and he played for one of the great basketball coaches in Mike Krzyzewski and he was a big influence in coaching career. He put in a great shift with the Revs and became an understudy then went into coaching. He got help from Mike and other coaches and in a few years, he's become an outstanding coach.
"He's a work horse who puts in a lot of hours, he's very dedicated, very bright and obviously very good."
Bruce Arena says that LA Galaxy win over New England Revolution in July means nothing heading into MLS Cup
CARSON, Calif. – Earlier this season, the LA Galaxy flattened their MLS Cup opponents the New England Revolution 5-1 at StubHub Center, but don’t look for that game to affect the way either team approaches Sunday’s championship match.
On July 16, LA were in control from the get go and were aided by an early red card by AJ Soares as Robbie Keane and Gyasi Zardes each scored a pair of goals while Stefan Ishizaki rounded out the scoring for the Galaxy. MLS MVP finalist Lee Nguyen scored the only goal of the evening for the Revs on a penalty kick goal that saw Galaxy right back Dan Gargan sent off.
While LA ran rampant that evening, the teams that will face one another are remarkably different (look at the lineups here).
In particular, that incarnation of the Revolution was mired in an eight game winless streak and was still a month from acquiring Designated Player Jermaine Jones, who has proven key to New England’s drive to MLS Cup. But LA will be dramatically different as well as Bruce Arena famously benched Landon Donovan for the match against New England only to insert the longtime U.S. international at halftime.
“Both teams are different. If you look at the lineups those days, they won’t look anything like Sunday," said Arena on Thursday. "They’re probably going to have three or four different players on the field and we’ll likely have four or five different players on the field. Davies is a fixture now, so there are changes. That game means nothing; it’s in the archives now.”
CARSON, Calif. – Landon Donovan is hanging up his boots at the end of the 2014 season and will play his final game of his illustrious career on Sunday when the LA Galaxy take on the New England Revolution on Sunday in MLS Cup.
But even though the nation’s most famous player will play in his final game on Sunday, his teammates aren’t interested in winning the title solely because they want to send him out on top. No, there is no “Win one for Landon.”
The Galaxy insist that they want to win the title so that each one of them can experience the joy of lifting the Phillip Anschutz trophy aloft.
“It’d certainly be nice, but our focus is on winning this for the Galaxy, for the team and for the organization,” said head coach Bruce Arena. “It just happens to be Landon’s last game, but it’d be very nice to send him out on a high.”
LA’s ever candid captain Robbie Keane took it one step further, asserting that LA wish Donovan the best, but have selfish motives when it comes to Sunday’s game.
“Listen if anyone deserves to go out on a high, it's certainly Landon because of all that he's done for this league and the U.S. National Team But it’s not going into our thinking. [His retirement] is something that has been going on for years and it hasn't affected us since,” Keane said with a smile. “I just hope that since it's his last game that he'll put forth his best performance and do as well as he can."
LA Galaxy goalkeeper coach Matt Reis reflects on emotional week ahead of MLS Cup match with New England Revolution
CARSON, Calif. -- LA Galaxy goalkeeper Matt Reis is dealing with a whirlwind of emotions as his new club prepare to take on his former team, the New England Revolution, in Sunday's MLS Cup final.
Reis spent his entire career between Sunday's participations as he began his time in MLS with the Galaxy (1998-2002) before moving on to the Revolution (2003-2012) where he played until retiring last season. An integral part of the Revolution for nearly a decade, Reis helped the Revs reach the MLS Cup three times in 2005, 2006 and 2007 where they fell short each time including a 2005 defeat to the Galaxy.
In the latest feature from LAGalaxy.com's Larry Morgan, Reis talks about his role with the Galaxy and his emotions heading into Sunday's game. Even though Reis will undoubtedly be pulling for the Galaxy on Sunday, he admits that he takes a great deal of pride for his role in helping the Revs reach the championship.
"Obviously there’s a ton of history there for me, on both sides. Having spent the last 11 years there and working hard with the players, the staff and the organization trying to get the franchise back to the top of the league where we had been before it was a very large undertaking and we put a lot of hard work in it." Reis said. "To see the Revs back in the MLS Cup final is something I’m proud to be a small part of that. The work the front office and the coaching staff and the owners did to get them back is really remarkable and they should be applauded for it."
CARSON, Calif. -- Nothing says MLS Cup week in Southern California quite like a little rain.
On Tuesday, the LA Galaxy kicked off their prepration for the 2014 MLS Cup Final with an early morning session that was plagued by rain showers. Rain has become a staple of LA's MLS Cups as both finals in 2011 and 2012 happened during rare Southern California rain showers.
Although the rain was intense during the session, it didn't affect the Galaxy's preparations.
"It was good. For the starters, we didn't do much, but it was good to let them run around a little bit," said Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena. "We'll have a day out tomorrow so by Thursday, they'll be fresh and ready to play."
Don't worry though: the forecast calls for partly cloudy conditions and temperatures of 72 degrees on Sunday afternoon.
Check out photos from Galaxy photographer Hana Asano below.
CARSON, Calif. -- LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena spoke to reporters on Sunday after the LA Galaxy's 2-1 defeat to Seattle Sounders FC at CenturyLink Field that saw the team advance 2-2 on aggregate thanks to the away goals tiebreaker.
Arena's comments are below.
Alonso missed out on the Galaxy’s 1-0 first leg win in Southern California last week with a hamstring injury, but has trained with Seattle throughout the week including their session at StarFire Sports Complex on Saturday.
The Galaxy boss was asked about Seattle’s optimism about their star midfielder’s status on Sunday and was quick to provide a terse response on Alonso’s availability.
“I wouldn't think so, but if he does [play] then good for him,” Arena quipped.
LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena not surprised by snow covered pitch in final training session at CenturyLink Field
SEATTLE -- When the LA Galaxy arrived at CenturyLink Field for their final training session ahead of their Western Conference Championship second leg match against Seattle Sounders FC, the pristine practice surface that they were expecting was covered in a dusting of snow that blanketed large swatches of the pitch.
The snow which was the remnants of a light snow fall that descended on Seattle in the early morning hours was soon made playable by the grounds crew, but the fact the Sounders might have provided LA with a little gamesmanship did not surprise Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena.
Rather, Arena insisted, “we always see gamesmanship. It doesn’t change.”
"I don't know the protocol [for the field being cleared],” Arena said in the team’s downtown hotel ahead of Sunday’s conference final deciding leg. “We ran a little bit so it was fine. We don't expect to get any favors when we visit here anyway.”
But when the game kicks off on Sunday, Arena doesn’t expect that the same types of conditions that they faced in training.
“We will adjust and play however. We don’t know what the conditions will be like, but they’ll probably be better than they were at training,” said Arena. “It’s going to be sunny tomorrow so you would anticipate that the ice would melt off the field.
“They weren’t able to clear the field and I know that it was a major blizzard last night so we dealt with those conditions today, but hopefully the sun will allow for the ice to disappear.”
— Adam Serrano (@LAGalaxyInsider) November 29, 2014