LA Galaxy stalwarts A.J. DeLaGarza and Juninho expecting to be ready for MLS Cup Final date with New England Revolution
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy are expecting to be back to full fitness -- or at least close to it, when they kick off in the MLS Cup Final against the New England Revolution on Sunday.
A.J. DeLaGarza (left hamstring strain) was the most glaring absence from the squad that dispatched Seattle Sounders FC on Sunday, but in an interview with reporters the morning after, the 27-year-old said that he expects to play in MLS Cup this weekend.
"I feel a lot better. I've been working out the last couple of days, but I didn't train too much in the buildup to the last game against Seattle so it wasn't right to go out in a situation like that especially on that turf. You saw that Osvaldo Alonso was not himself and he had two weeks to get ready for that," said DeLaGarza. "I'll be fine this weekend. I'm going to get back into full training."
Another question mark is Juninho who played the hero for the Galaxy with the series-clinching goal against the Sounders. It appeared that the Brazilian suffered an injury in the 87th minute that forced Bruce Arena to pull him from the match when a subsitution of another banged up player (Marcelo Sarvas) was already in the cards.
Despite needing to be helped off the field, Juninho insisted after the game that he'll be ready for Sunday's meeting with the New England Revolution.
"It was so cold out there and at the end of the game there is a lot of pressure so I felt a cramp," said Juninho. " I'm good though. I'll be good for the next game."
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.
SEATTLE- The day is finally here: LA Galaxy vs. Seattle Sounders FC for a berth in the MLS Cup.
In the latest edition of the LA Galaxy TV Insider Breakdown, I take a look at three facets of the Western Conference Championship second leg.
Check it out above.
SEATTLE— Bruce Arena often tells reporters that he is unaware what to expect from a match, but the LA Galaxy head coach offered a little insight to the team’s mindset heading into their decisive match in Seattle.
LA will play for a spot in MLS Cup on Sunday in their Western Conference Championship second leg match with Seattle Sounders FC and just hours out from the Galaxy’s potential final match of 2014, Arena insists that his squad has what it takes to knock off Seattle.
“At this point of the game, we just have to stick to our game plan. we've been together for 10 whole months, we know what we're about,” said Arena. “We just know the adjustments that we have to make and we know the circumstances in this series. We’ll be prepared for whatever they throw at us.
And no matter what Seattle brings, Arena insists that his team’s focus is singular: “Just Win Baby.”
“If we win the game [then] that’s the key. You don’t know how the game is going to play out,” said Arena. “Conditions are an issue, but I don’t think it is huge. We know each other and we’ll go out and play. Hopefully we move forward and we’re the better team and we move onto MLS Cup.”
By the Numbers: LA Galaxy looking to clinch berth in MLS Cup in second leg against Seattle Sounders FC
SEATTLE -- One more day.
The LA Galaxy and Seattle Sounders FC will face on Sunday night with a spot in MLS Cup on the line. In the latest edition of LAGalaxy.com's By the Numbers, we look at the Galaxy's record in Seattle in MLS competition over the years.
Check it out below.
Everyone knows about Landon Donovan's famous habit of kissing his wrists before each penalty, but there is another ritual that the LA Galaxy and U.S. National Team star is infamous for that takes place before each and every game.
Since joining the Galaxy, Donovan has preformed the ritual -- which he claims isn't necessary, but has been performed in every game since 2005 -- which involves him taking a drink of water from a Gatorade bottle before spraying both head athletic trainer Ivan Pierra and assistant athletic trainer Kurt Andrews in the face.
"It kind of gets the training staff a little bit fired up and prepared for the game and hopefully makes them feel a little bit part of what's going on," Donovan told the Los Angeles Times' Kevin Baxter. "They're a part of what we do, and we want to make them feel involved."
Added Andrews, " "It's a bond, We as a staff spend a lot of time with him. I could see it as an honor, for sure."
The complete story on Landon Donovan's pregame ritual can be found here on the Los Angeles Times website.
CARSON, Calif. -- LA Galaxy center back A.J. DeLaGarza was awarded the 2014 MLS WORKS Humanitarian of the Year award on Tuesday according to a league release.
DeLaGarza, who is heavily involved in the LA Galaxy Foundation's charitable works, drew considerable attention this season due to the passing of his newborn son Luca and his substantial involvement with the heart ward at Children's Hospital of Los Angeles. The 27-year-old is the first-ever Galaxy player to receive the award.
A complete release about DeLaGarza's award can be found here.
LA Galaxy center back Omar Gonzalez finished third in the 2014 MLS Defender of the Year voting as Seattle Sounders FC center back Chad Marshall took home the top honors.
Marshall finished ahead of D.C. United central defender Bobby Boswell who led both the media and club voting, but the Sounders defender's advantage in the player voting were enough to give him the Defender of the Year. The award is an unprecedented third for Marshall who won the honor twice in 2008 and 2009 while with the Columbus Crew.
Gonzalez was nominated for the league's top honor despite A.J. DeLaGarza winning the team's honor which is voted on by local media.
Jair Marrufo to ref Western Conference Championship second leg between the LA Galaxy and Seattle Sounders FC
CARSON, Calif. -- Amid the officiating drama of the LA Galaxy's Western Conference Championship first leg with Seattle Sounders FC, the Professional Referees Organization announced that referee Jair Marrufo will get the whistle in Sunday's decisive second leg.
Marrufo officiated over four LA Galaxy games this season including the team's 5-0 Western Conference Semifinal second leg victory over Real Salt Lake earlier this month. During the four games, Marrufo whistled an average 16.25 fouls per game while awarding six yellow cards as the Galaxy earned a 2-0-2 record. The 37-year-old official also reffed two games for the Sounders as Seattle earned a 1-1-0 record. During his Sounders matches, Marrufo called an average of 20.5 fouls per game while dishing out five yellow cards.
Interestingly enough, Marrufo was the man in the middle for a Galaxy/Sounders playoff game in the past as he officiated LA's 3-0 thumping of Seattle in the 2012 Western Conference Championship first leg.
The complete officiating team is below.
REFEREE: JAIR MARRUFO
AR1: Eric Boria
AR2: Corey Rockwell
4TH: Hilario Grajeda