The Bruce is Back: LA Galaxy club President Chris Klein states Bruce Arena extension for three years
CARSON, Calif. – Bruce Arena will be with the LA Galaxy for three more years according to club President Chris Klein.
On Wednesday, the LA Galaxy announced that they had signed the team’s head coach and general manager to a multi-year deal, but in an interview with LAGalaxy.com, Klein revealed the length of Arena’s contract extension.
“Look at what he’s done since he came here in 2008. And we wanted to make sure he could continue to do that, for another three years,” Klein told LAGalaxy.com. “He’s the best coach our game has seen in this country, and we’re thankful he’s a part of the Galaxy.”
Klein was not the only person who was in high spirits after Arena's extension as midfielder Landon Donovan stated that he was pleased with the Galaxy's decision to keep their head coach around.
“It's well deserved," said Donovan. "We’re very happy for him. He has much as any coach in this league deserves to be taken care of. As we’ve seen over the years, this is a club that takes care of people. We’re all happy for him.”
The man that LA Galaxy fans glowingly refer to as "Bruce Almighty" will be sticking around a few more years.
On Thursday, the Galaxy announced that they have signed head coach and general manger Bruce Arena to a new multi-year contract extension. Arena, who is one of the most successful coaches in U.S. history has led the Galaxy to two MLS Cups and three MLS Cup finals since joining the club in 2008. Heading into his seventh year at the helm of the Galaxy, the three MLS Coach of the Year and four-time MLS Cup winner has compiled a 82-46-44 regular season record with LA.
“I’m honored to remain in this role with the preeminent soccer club in the United States,” said Arena in a statement. “I appreciate the continued support and confidence from Mr. Anschutz, Mr. Beckerman, Chris Klein and my staff and players as we head into the 2014 season.”
— LA Galaxy (@LAGalaxy) February 6, 2014
Thoughts on the deal?
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CARSON, Calif. – At the moment, the competition between right backs Matheau Hall, Dan Gargan and James Riley is a friendly one –they do carpool to the stadium every morning after all—but each has a simple goal: prove to the LA Galaxy coaching staff that they deserve a spot on the team’s roster in 2014.
With Sean Franklin and Hector Jimenez departing in the offseason, the Galaxy have sought out cover at the right back spot which led to camp invitations for Hall and 31-year-old Gargan at the start of preseason, and Riley a week later.
Hall, 26, went 45 minutes in strong performance during LA’s 2-2 draw with Chivas USA in a closed-door scrimmage, repeatedly challenging the Rojiblancos defense as he pressed forward early and often. Neither of the veteran defenders appeared in the scrimmage on Wednesday, but Riley, 31, expects to return see time during LA’s preseason friendly against Armenian side FC Shirak this weekend.
HALL: “The camp has been going great. I’ve been given a lot of work in short period of time, but it is going really well. Every day is a challenge because you have come ready to play since it is a position that everyone is hungry to earn. … I think that I add pace out of the back as well as versatility."
GARGAN: “Bruce is looking for competition in the backline and I’m an experienced guy with a lot of games in this league. I think that Bruce is looking for quality players who can compete every day, and this team has a lot of them.”
RILEY: “LA tries to set the bar and I think that’s a fantastic environment to come into. I love the challenge and I love the opportunity, and I am prepared for it. … I just want to build on my first two days [in training]. It’s definitely a marathon and not a sprint. The tortoise won that race, not the hare so I keep that in mind.”
Which of the three players will earn a spot on the roster?
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CARSON, Calif. – The LA Galaxy battled to a 2-2 draw with cross-hall rivals Chivas USA in a preseason scrimmage on Wednesday.
The Galaxy were dominant in the first half and needed just five minutes to pull ahead when Rob Friend finished a side-footed volley off a Juninho free kick. The Brazilian midfielder scored a goal of his own in the 20th minute after finishing a brilliant strike from beyond 25-yards that curled past the Chivas USA goalkeeper.
However, in the second half, Chivas USA was able to capitalize on a Galaxy lineup that went through a near complete change at the half and was totally different 10 minutes into the second stanza. Chivas leveled the score in the 72nd minute with a finish by Jacob Barron before equalizing less than 10 minutes later after Matthew Fondy buried a header past Brian Perk.
The result may not have been ideal, but Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena affirmed that it was simply part of the process of getting the team ready for their MLS season opener which is a little more than a month away.
“It was just another day of practice in all honesty. It was about getting guys in a full field situation,” said Arena. “The group we played in the first half did a good job of pressuring and creating some chances while the group in the second half was definitely outplayed and it was a sloppy performance.”
LA Galaxy Starting XI First Half: Penedo; Hall, DeLaGarza, Opare, Cochrane; Ishizaki, Husidic, Juninho, Zardes; Friend, Samuel
LA Galaxy Starting XI Second Half: Perk; Sorto, Leonardo, Venter, Gaul; Jamieson IV, Sarvas, Garcia, Hoffman; Rugg, McBean
LA Galaxy XI at the Final Whistle: Perk; Sorto, Leonardo, Venter, Gaul; Mendiola, Sarvas, Garcia, Hoffman; Rugg, McBean
A new season means new uniforms and new merchandise, and on Tuesday, I obtained the first look at the LA Galaxy's training tops for 2014.
The training kits come in two colors: a dark blue with blue-green and gold trim on the shoulders and a gold version with blue and black shoulder trim. These tops will be available for sale at the Team LA store at StubHub Center starting Friday.
Now that the training kits have been released, I’m hearing that the first tease of the new Galaxy primary kit will take place at Legends Night on Feb. 22 prior to the “Blue and White Game” between the LA first team and LA Galaxy II, with the full unveil taking place on March 3. Although there have been images of the kit floating around online, sources have confirmed to me that the jersey making the rounds on the internet is not what will be released in March.
Thoughts on the new training top? Excited for the unveil of the primary kit?
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Ahead of the all-important 2014 season, LA Galaxy club President Chris Klein took a moment to speak to Sports Illustrated's Grant Wahl about the upcoming season, the Galaxy Academy and a number of other topics.
Check out the interview below.
CARSON, Calif. -- Add another right back into the mix for the LA Galaxy.
Veteran right back James Riley has joined training camp and joins trialists Dan Gargan and Matheau Hall who have been with the team since the start of training camp. According to a source, the 31-year-old attack-minded full back received a call from the Galaxy over the weekend and has just begun to train with the club over the past two days.
A nine-year veteran in MLS, Riley has made a total of 211 appearances for a total of five clubs. Riley spent the 2013 season with D.C. United, making 21 appearances in league play while helping the team win the 2013 U.S. Open Cup, but was released by the team through the league's Re-Entry Draft process. The defender has also made stops with the New England Revolution, San Jose Earthquakes, Seattle Sounders FC, and Chivas USA
Thoughts on Riley?
CARSON, Calif. – Preseason is typically loaded with battles for positions, but no competition will be more closely watched this season than the fight to start up top alongside LA Galaxy captain Robbie Keane.
The two top contenders vying for head coach Bruce Arena’s attention are Canadian target man Rob Friend and Brazilian striker Samuel, both of whom were brought in last month to add height and physicality to the Galaxy forward line. Each carries their own traits to the tussle as the 6-foot-5 Friend brings more than a decade of European experience with him while Samuel is considered a highly-touted prospect by LA brass.
Although Friend acknowledges the competition between the two similar players is beneficial for the Galaxy, he believes that two players should push each other over the long season.
“I don’t think that [Samuel] is exactly like me. I’m more of a straight up target man and he roams a little bit as well,” said Friend. “We’re all different players and I think that we can bring something. It’s a long season and it gives Bruce the option to use different players with different qualities up front.”
Who do you think should start alongside Keane?
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CARSON, Calif. – The U.S. National Team completed their tenth January camp in Carson on Saturday with a 2-0 victory over Korea Republic, but before next year’s 11th edition changes may be coming.
Following a Chris Wondolowski-fueled victory over Korea, U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann noted that he may hit the reset button on the camp in 2015. In particular, Klinsmann stated that while this particular camp was vital for his team with the 2014 FIFA World Cup on the horizon, future January camps may have a different a different makeup.
“Maybe in the future…it’ll be more likely used as a developmental camp. Maybe we cut it down to younger players and see how we can develop those younger players because it shouldn’t be our job to cut their season shorter and get them fit, that’s actually the job of MLS,” said Klinsmann in his press conference following the U.S. victory. “I always mention that I would like to see the MLS season getting lengthened now we’re going to get more teams in 2015, so hopefully that happens.
“We will kind of rethink the January camp in a non-World Cup year,” Klinsmann added. “Maybe we change some things with this camp because of the possibility of looking at the next generation of players coming through the ranks.”
Should January camp change?
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CARSON, Calif. – Jose Villarreal made his first appearance in a Cruz Azul kit on Saturday as he scored a goal for the team’s U-20 side in a 1-1 draw with the Chivas de Guadalajara U-20’s.
Villarreal’s goal came five minutes into the match and comes less than a week after he made his first appearance for the team as a whole in a friendly against a non-professional team from the Mexican Armed Forces.
The Galaxy attacker was joined in the lineup by San Diego-native Michael Farfan who also made his first showing for the Cruz Azul U-20 side.