CARSON, Calif. -- No player in MLS knows Jermain Defoe quite like his former Tottenham Hotspur teammate Robbie Keane, and as he prepares to lead playoff hopeful Toronto FC into StubHub Center, Keane understands that LA will have their hands full with the Englishman.
After missing the last two months with a hamstring injury, Defoe is expected to be available for selection when Toronto take on the Galaxy on Saturday. Although he's missed the last six games for TFC, he's still the team's leading goal scorer with 11 goals for the Reds.
"He's a fantastic player and a typical goal scorer. He can score many different types of goals and can finish all over the field," said Keane. "I bet that he's excited to get playing and I know that he doesn't like to be injured, so he'll be dangerous if he gets on the field, but I hope that he won't do too well against us."
Trumpted as a top tier signing in the offseason, Defoe's time with Toronto has been a turbulent one with the player repeatedly linked to a move back to his native England. Although rumors have swirled about Defoe's commitment to TFC, Keane says that his former teammate remains a valuable asset for Toronto.
"I wouldn't say that he's had a difficult time because when he's played, he's done well," added Keane. "You can't help injuries which is just part of what we do. People are simply saying that he's not adapting because of the speculation of him moving somewhere else. If you look at how he's played, he's scored goals."
As for the business of marking Defoe, Galaxy center back Omar Gonzalez believes that much like New York Red Bulls striker Bradley Wright-Phillips, LA will be need to be mindful of his presence in the penalty area if they're to extend their unbeaten run to 10 games.
"Defoe is a great player, but we have to be focused on ourselves. If we can make Toronto run and chase the game by having possession than that's great. However as soon as we lose the ball, we have to be mindful of the space behind us because that's where he's the most deadly. He's a tricky player, but I'm sure that we have guys that can handle him."
LA Galaxy Homegrown Player and Galaxy II stalwart Oscar Sorto was among 21 players called up to the U.S. Under-23 National Team for their upcoming training camp in Brazil.
The U.S. U-23s will train in Brasilla from Oct. 10-12 and then face their Brazilian counterparts on Oct. 13 at the Estadio Nacional in Brasilla.
Sorto's participation with the U.S. U-23 squad will be his first competitive action since he enjoyed a strong season for LA Galaxy II with 23 appearances for the USL PRO semifinalists. Joining Sorto on the squad is former Galaxy Academy player Mario Rodriguez who is currently with German club Borussia Monchengladbach.
The complete roster is below:
CARSON, Calif. -- LA Galaxy forward Landon Donovan is a front-runner for the MLS MVP, but the forward isn't too focused on his own candidacy, he's backing teammate Robbie Keane's bid to be recognized as the top player in MLS in 2014.
In his final professional season, Donovan has enjoyed a stellar campaign with the Galaxy notching 10 goals and 18 assists. Those numbers have catapulted Donovan to the thick of the MVP conversation alongside Keane, Seattle Sounders FC forward Obafemi Martins, New England Revolution midfielder Lee Nguyen and several others.
Much like Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena, Donovan believes that the stats are clear that Keane is the choice for MVP.
"His ability to create chances and wreck havoc on defenses is unlike any other," said Donovan. "With all due respect to Obafemi, there's no other player in the league like Robbie. The things that he does week to week are spectacular.
"We're very lucky to have him and there's no question that he's the MVP."
But wouldn't an MVP trophy help Donovan close out his legendary career in style? The Galaxy star says no.
"To be completely honest, I'd rather Robbie win [MVP] and I'd rather us win a championship," said Donovan. "I'm not worried about that."
In the latest edition of "Cobi's Corner," LA Galaxy legend and broadcaster Cobi Jones speaks to defender Dan Gargan on his stellar season with LA.
Omar Alejandro Gonzalez has excelled on the soccer field, but now he's looking to extend his reach to the film industry with his directorial debut in "Every Dog Has Its Day."
The defender turned director released his venture into filmmaking on Sunday with a adventure film detailing the trip of six friends to an unknown land. The brief film is a true tour de force. In EDHID, we get a chance to see Omar Alejandro's skills at not only piloting a DJII drone helicopter, but also several miles of rich Rancho Palos Verdes coastline.
Omar Alejandro displays a unique talent for incorporating Mother Nature into the story line while also interspersing several exciting cameos like LA Galaxy midfielder Baggio Husidic and man on a boat. It's no surprise that Omar Alejandro's work has already earned selection into the "Brendan Hannan Film Festival" and the coveted "ACB Choice" award.
All in all, the film is a triumph for Supporters' Shield films and has to be awarded FOUR paws up.
EVERY DOG HAS ITS DAY
Rating: D (for strong dog related content and questionable beach attire)
Genre: Mystery & Suspense & Adventure
Directed By: Omar Alejandro
Written By: Omar Alejandro
In Theaters: YouTube
Box Office: Unknown
Runtime: 1 minute and 34 seconds
CARSON, Calif. -- After their 4-0 shellacking of the New York Red Bulls, it's no surprise that the LA Galaxy are well represented on MLSsoccer.com's Team of the Week.
Landon Donovan, Robbie Keane and Omar Gonzalez were each named to MLSsoccer.com's squad for their role in LA's victory. In the win against New York, Keane tallied twice to set a new personal single season MLS career high of 17 goals while Gonzalez was vital in helping LA notch their ninth shutout of the season. Donovan took home top honors being named MLS Player of the Week after tallying three assists and one goal en route to tying Steve Ralston's all-time MLS assist record of 135.
Also receiving recognition was Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena who was named 'Coach of the Week" while Jaime Penedo earned an honorable mention for his six save performance in the win.
CARSON, Calif. -- Landon Donovan was awarded the North American Soccer Reporters' MLS Player of the Week award on Monday for his one goal and three assist performance in the LA Galaxy's 4-0 victory over the New York Red Bulls.
With three assists in the win over the Red Bulls, Donovan brought his career regular season total to 135 and tied New England Revolution legend Steve Ralston's all-time MLS assist mark.
Donovan has now been awarded Player of the Week four times during the 2014 season.
CARSON, Calif. – Two titans of MLS will likely play their final match against one another on Sunday when Landon Donovan’s LA Galaxy faces off against Thierry Henry’s New York Red Bulls.
The similarities for the two players are easy to see: both players are stars for their club teams and the leading goal scorers for their respective national sides. While Donovan has pledged to hang up his boots at the end of the 2014 season, speculation has swirled that Henry will end his own storied career at the end of the year—a fact that he has denied.
Even if Henry stays with New York another year, Donovan says that he is relishing what may be his final chance to face the French maestro.
“Sometimes we forget how special his career has been. When you’re caught up in the moment and you’re caught up in the game, you just see him as an opponent to stop. But when you think about it historically, it’s pretty special that we get to play against him,” said Donovan. “We’re certainly not in awe of him when we’re playing, but when you step back and take a look at his career, it’s special that we get to play against a player of his caliber.”
But will Sunday’s match be the last time that the Red Bulls face the Galaxy this year? Donovan hopes not.
“Hopefully, it’s not the last time. Hopefully they see us again in December,” Donovan said. “We’ve had very different careers, but he’s meant a lot to French Football, Arsenal and the Red Bulls. He’s brought them back to prominence after a longtime of not being a prominent team on the national scope. It’s been impressive what they’ve done with him and I’m going to try to enjoy the last encounter.”
Make no mistake, Steve Ralston is hoping that Landon Donovan will not break his MLS all-time assist record, but even if he does lose the honor, he "won't lose sleep over it."
Donovan currently sits at 132 assists and has just five matches left to pull level with Ralston's all-time mark of 135. Ralston, a mainstay with the New England Revolution during his career, who is now an assistant coach with the Houston Dynamo was frank in a conversation with MLSsoccer.com's Darrell Lovell when asked about Donovan's pursuit of the record.
“People keep asking me ‘What do you think?’ I think he’s at least going to tie it and probably break it,” Ralston told MLSsoccer.com on Tuesday. “Do I want him to break it? No, not really. The only person I’d want to break my record would be my son. People that say they want their records broken, they’re liars. Who doesn’t want to keep it?
“At the same time, if he breaks it I’m not going to lose sleep over it. He’s Landon Donovan. He’s arguably the greatest player in US soccer history. If someone’s going to break it, and it’s Landon Donovan, that’s fine with me.”
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CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy are gunning for their first Supporters' Shield triumph since 2011, but even as the club sits level on points with Seattle Sounders FC, captain Robbie Keane issued an important message for his group.
Don't lose focus on the real prize -- MLS Cup.
Keane notched a goal and an assist in the Galaxy's 2-1 victory over FC Dallas that moved them a step closer to the Shield while also helping the club clinch a postseason berth. Bur despite his teammates' emphasis on the chase for the Shield, the Irishman put LA's remaining league games into perspective.
“Listen, it's great to win the Supporters' Shield, there's no question about it, but I can't remember the last two years who won the Supporters' Shield; I remember who won the [MLS Cup] championship,” Keane told reporters on Saturday. “Even though it's very, very important and we want to do it, obviously the main one is to win the championship."