Vancouver Whitecaps FC
LA Galaxy midfielder Stefan Ishizaki finished third in the voting for the 2014 MLS Newcomer of the Year, the league announced on Wednesday.
Vancouver Whitecaps FC midfielder Pedro Morales took home the award after scoring 10 goals and nine assists for a Whitecaps side that returned to the postseason in 2014. Ishizaki came in third with just under seven percent of the vote while New England Revolution midfielder Jermaine Jones finished second with nearly 35 percent of the vote.
Ishizaki's Galaxy and Jones' Revolution will face one another on Sunday in the 2014 MLS Cup final at StubHub Center.
CARSON, Calif. – Marcelo Sarvas has been angling for goal during the last three weeks not only because he’s been eager to help the LA Galaxy offense, but also for personal reasons.
Two weeks ago, the Brazilian midfielder and his wife Camilla learned that the couple will be expecting their second child. Sarvas and his wife already have a son, Lucas who is a frequent sight on the sidelines at Galaxy matches.
During the Galaxy’s 2-0 victory over Vancouver Whitecaps FC, Sarvas found the back of the net for the second time in the season. The goal was a mix of flair and luck on Sarvas’ part as the Brazilian dished a back heel pass to Robbie Keane who whiffed on a shot from close range that fell for Sarvas who punched it in.
“I’m not used to having the ball in that position and I’m blessed to get the chance,” said Sarvas who admitted that he was unaware that Keane had not intended to pass the ball to him. “I passed to him and when I turned, the ball was close to me and I was in front of goal. It was all very fast.”
With the goal scored, Sarvas completed the classic celebration of tucking the ball under his stomach and sucking his thumb in dedication to his future child.
“We proved [against Vancouver] that we have a good team but even good teams need to play with heart and soul,” said Sarvas. “When we stepped on the field today, everyone approached the game with the right mentality and when we do this, we’re a very good team.”
CARSON, Calif. -- LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena spoke to the media after his club's 2-0 victory over Vancouver Whitecaps FC.
Arena's thoughts are below
(On the team’s performance....)
ARENA: “I think we had a very good collective effort tonight. Players worked on both sides of the ball. It was a very good performance. Our backline played well but the six players in front of them did a really good job as well.”
(On the missed opportunities....)
ARENA: “I think it’s a very good win for our team. Thought it was a great team effort collectively on both sides of the ball. We could have gotten more goals but that is all part of the game. We are really pleased with the three points.”
(On getting goals early in the game...)
ARENA: “Good start to the game. Playing at home with a lead, we are generally a good team. It was obviously a great start to the game.”
(On the backline’s performance...)
ARENA: “They played well. They had a couple of chances at the end but I thought in general they played well. A couple of crosses in the second half were dangerous. Our guys did a good job clearing the ball and Jaime [Penedo] made a couple of good saves. Overall it was an improved performance.”
(On if the team is over the "hiccup" that they suffered against Columbus and Colorado...)
ARENA: "I wouldn't call it a hiccup. I'd say it was vomiting."
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy return home on Saturday to take on Vancouver Whitecaps FC in the first match of a two game stretch at home.
Below are a series of links, matchups to watch and a predicted score ahead of Saturday's clash with Vancouver.
*Remember to get to the match early because the first 15,000 fans through the gates at StubHub Center will receive a special edition LA Galaxy lunch box.
*The LA Galaxy may be in the middle of a brutal congested schedule, but they'll face a Vancouver team that they've enjoyed plenty of success against in the past.
*It took Alan Gordon only two games to find the back of the net for the LA Galaxy, could the forward who adds a "different dimension" to the club see more minutes against the Whitecaps?
*Lastly, my preview of the match for LAGalaxy.com.
MATCHUPS TO WATCH:
MARCELO SARVAS vs. PEDRO MORALES
The active LA Galaxy midfielder will have his hands full on Saturday as he looks to contain Morales who is the focal point of the Whitecaps attack. Expect Sarvas -- and Juninho -- to put pressure on the playmaker to prevent him from enjoying the type of space that he needs to create chances for Vancouver.
ROBBIE KEANE vs. ANDY O'BRIEN
In this battle of Irishmen, Keane will seek to lure the physical O'Brien out of position and open up the Whitecaps defense for the likes of Gyasi Zardes and Landon Donovn.
WHAT THEY SAID:
“The Vancouver game is a six point game. When you play games at home, you have to get points. The way that the league is going, we might find ourselves at the top at the end [of the season] and that starts Saturday against the Whitecaps.” - Landon Donovan.
LA Galaxy 1 (Keane) Vancouver Whitecaps FC 0
Soccer has caught the attention of America over the past month and now MLS kicks back into full swing with a slate of games this weekend.
MLSsoccer.com gets you excited for the action with this hype video.
CARSON, Calif. -- LA Galaxy center back Leonardo took plenty of flak his second half defensive error in LA’s draw with Vancouver Whitecaps FC, but the Brazilian defender believes that he’ll rebound.
Following training, I asked Arena about how Leonardo moves forward and whether he simply needs to have a short memory or should focus on correcting the concentration error. The response from the Galaxy boss was worth noting.
“It has to be a little of both. I’m sure you’ve made mistakes in your life. Fell off your tricycle at some point and had to learn from that. You put the Band-Aid on and you get on with business,” Arena said. “That’s basically what we’re doing. It’s all part of life, but unfortunately for athletes especially defenders or goalkeepers, when they make a mistake, everyone is an expert and has it all figured out. Leo was involved in a lot of plays in that game where he was excellent. However, he did make a crucial error; we learn from it and move on.”
As for Leonardo, the center back is bullish about his ability to recover from performances like the match against the Whitecaps and the Club Tijuana defeat earlier in the year.
“It happens to players,” Leonardo admitted. “I think the thing to understand that when we face more complicated games you learn from your mistakes.”
VANCOUVER, B.C. – Dan Gargan looks like he’s here to stay on the right-side of the LA Galaxy defense.
The 31-year-old put forth another strong performance on Saturday as he notched his second assist in three starts. Gargan’s two helpers place him in a four-way tie for the team lead.
Gargan’s brightest moment came in the 38th minute when he launched a diagonal ball onto the head of Baggio Husidic who knocked it toward Stefan Ishizaki, who nodded a shot past Vancouver goalkeeper David Ousted for the game’s first goal.
“It’s something that Bruce has encouraged for me to get involved in the attack and take the space when it’s available. When that opportunity opens up, I want to do whatever I can help,”Gargan told reporters after the game. “If that’s pushing forward and being an option then great, but if nothing else, then I’d like to pull teams wide and give Robbie [Keane] and Landon [Donovan] options going forward.”
The veteran defender also excelled on the defensive side of the ball as he made five recoveries, two clearances and one interception during the draw. Despite his success, head coach Bruce Arena admitted that the Galaxy have yet to see the best that the defender has to offer.
"Dan had a solid game,” the Galaxy coach said. “We're moving him along, he needs a few games to get full match fitness, but he's doing well."
TWCSN's Kelli Tennant soldiers on with telecast despite taking a ball to the head prior to Vancouver Whitecaps match
Those Time Warner Cable SportsNet pregame and postgame shows are getting mighty interesting.
A week after Landon Donovan videobombed my own live hit during the TWCSN postgame show, Galaxy sideline reporter Kelli Tennant had a little unintentional fun of her own during the pregame show when she was knocked in the head by an errant Vancouver Whitecaps shot ahead of the LA Galaxy's 2-2 draw last Saturday. It appears that TWCSN producer Joel Bengoa attempted to block the shot from colliding with Tennant, but his outstretched arm was unable to make the stop.
Tennant's composed reaction made international news and you can see the video below.