PHILADELPHIA -- Major League Soccer to an immense step to honor retiring great Landon Donovan on Thursday by announcing that they have renamed their league Most Valuable Player trophy after the retired LA Galaxy legend.
MLS commissioner Don Garber made the announcement prior to the 2015 MLS SuperDraft at a special ceremony in Philadelphia. The new award name will be in place for the 2015 season.
Although Donovan holds all of MLS' major scoring records and is the most decorated player in league history, he admtited that the announcement came as a shock.
"This feels different because I saw all the people who have been with me from day one and that makes you appreciate what you put into it. I'm just very grateful to the commissioner for this and for my family who made incredible sacrifices in their life. This is something that they can always see and look at. They deserve this as much as I do."
The U.S. Under-20 national team finally found their attack on Thursday as they destroyed Aruba 8-0 in their third Group A match at the CONCACAF U-20 Championship in Jamaica.
LA Galaxy Homegrown Player Bradford Jamieson earned the start in the win and scored twice as the U.S. offense roared to life after two lackluster games against Guatemala and Panama. Columbus Crew youngster Romain Gall led all scorers with three goals while Emerson Hyndman, Tommy Thompson and Amando Moreno each added one goal in the victory.
Their first win in the competition secured, the U.S. will now take on host nation Jamaica on Sunday before ending their group stage play against Trinidad and Tobago on Jan. 21. The top team from both groups qualifies automatically for this summer's U-20 World Cup in New Zealand while the second and third place teams will face off in a decisive one-game playoff for a chance to qualify for the tournament.
Marcelo Sarvas was an integral part of the LA Galaxy’s 2014 MLS Cup Championship campaign, but various reports are stating that the midfielder be on the move as part of a series of deals that could see Sacha Kljestan come to the StubHub Center.
Goal.com’s Ives Galarcep and ESPN FC’s Jeff Carlisle reported this week that with the Galaxy interested in signing Kljestan who is currently out of contract with Belgian club Anderlecht, Sarvas could be moved as part of a deal to acquire the Huntington Beach native. If Kljestan does sign with MLS, he will be subject to the league’s allocation order which would require interested parties—reported to be LA, New York Red Bulls,Philadelphia Union, and Seattle Sounders FC—to trade up with the Montreal Impact, who currently hold the top spot.
Sources confirmed both reports by Goal and ESPN FC that the Brazilian midfielder is seeking a pay raise after his stellar 2014 season, despite Sarvas having one more year on his current contract. Carlisle reported that during the league’s draft combine that several coaches said that would be interested in Sarvas if he were to become available by the Galaxy, including San Jose Earthquakes head coach Dominic Kinnear who’s side holds the second spot in the allocation order.
Kinnear even addressed potential interest with a brief comment to Carlisle.
LA Galaxy to report for 2015 preseason on Jan. 22; will play Hammarby in Sweden as part of European preseason tour
A little more than a month after winning MLS Cup, the LA Galaxy are getting back to business.
The club announced on Tuesday that Galaxy players will report for physicals on Jan. 22 before returning to the field a day later. LA will train at StubHub Center until Feb. 11 before the departs for Europe for a pair of friendlies against Swedish -- and AEG owned -- side Hammarby at Tele2 Arena in Stockholm on Feb. 16 at 11:30 a.m. PT (7:30 p.m. local time) before taking on Republic of Ireland giant Shamrock Rovers in Dublin on Feb. 21 at 8 a.m. PT (4 p.m. local time). The Galaxy will return to Los Angeles on Feb. 22 and begin to their turn their focus to the regular season opener against the Chicago Fire on March 6.
Prior to the first team's departure for Europe, USL PRO affiliate LA Galaxy II will host open try outs at StubHub Center on Jan. 31 and Feb. 1
Excited for the Galaxy to return to action?
LA Galaxy and Republic of Ireland captain Robbie Keane backs FIFA Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo
The eyes of the global soccer world were in Zurich on Monday as FIFA held it's annual FIFA Ballon d’Or Gala. The winners surprised few as world superstar Cristiano Ronaldo took home the prestigious Ballon d'Or award while German head coach Jogi Low won the FIFA Head Coach of the Year honors.
National team captains and head coaches from across the world participated in the voting including LA Galaxy captain and Republic of Ireland skipper Robbie Keane.
For the Ballon d'Or, Keane tipped Ronaldo as his first choice, Argentina's Lionel Messi in second and his former Tottenham Hotspur teammate Gareth Bale in third. While Keane voted with the majority for his player voting, he went with a bent with his vote for the coaching honor, opting for Real Madrid's Carlo Ancelotti first, Atletico Madrid's Diego Simone second and finally U.S. National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann in third.
Klinsmann also had a vote for both awards, tipping Low for the coaching honor but did not side with the Irishman for the World Player of the Year, backing Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer for the award. The U.S. boss spoke about his votes to reporters in Carson on Monday at the opening of the USMNT's annual Janaury camp.
"It’s a no brainer that Jogi Low was the coach of the year because he won the World Cup. I was a bit sad for Manuel Neuer because I thought he played outstanding. At the end of the day, the most important title that you can win in your career is a World Cup and he won that one," Klinsmann said. "When you talk about players like Cristiano Ronaldo and [Lionel] Messi, you’re talking about top class players and you wish them all the best, and hope that they can get whatever award that they can get. But I was voting for Manuel Neuer and I was hoping that he could win, but unfortunately, he didn’t."
Things went from bad to worse for the U.S. Under-20's during their U-20 CONCACAF Championship campaign on Sunday.
Panama's U-20 side defeated Tab Ramos' squad 1-0 off a 79th minute goal from Los Canaleros' Carlos Small. The U.S. Under-20's are now 0-1-1 in their first two matches in Group A play after their disappointing 1-1 draw to Guatemala earlier this week. Despite their poor start, the U.S. squad needs only to finish in the top three in group play to have a chance to qualify for this summer's U-20 World Cup.
Galaxy Homegrown forward Bradford Jamieson IV started the match on the bench as the U.S. once again sputtered offensively against a Central American opponent. Jamieson was inserted at halftime with the U.S. struggling, but it was Panama who found the winner when Small capitalized on a ball over the top and placed it into the back of the net with a right-footed volley.
The U.S. return to action next Wednesday against Aruba and will then take on Jamaica on Jan. 18 before finishing up group play on Jan. 20 against Trinidad and Tobago.
Bradford Jamieson IV starts as U.S. U-20's suffer late 1-1 draw to Guatemala in U-20 World Cup qualifying
LA Galaxy Homegrown Player Bradford Jamieson IV earned the start and went 65 minutes as the U.S. Under-20's sputtered out of the gate in their bid to qualify for the 2015 U-20 World Cup with a 1-1 draw to Guatemala in their first match of CONCACAF U-20 Championship.
Head coach Tab Ramos gave Jamieson the start up top for the match against the Central Americans, but poor service saw the young American side fail to capitalize on several chances during the first half. The U.S. U-20's pulled ahead in the 58th minute when defender Cameron Carter-Vickers nodded home an Emerson Hyndman corner kick to give the Americans a lead. Guatemala found their equalizer late, however as FC Dallas Academy product Andy Ruiz scored off a stunning volley to give the Central American side a point in the Group A match.
The U.S. U-20 return to action on Sunday when they face their counterparts Panama before ending their group play with matches against Aruba next Wednesday, host nation Jamaica on Jan. 18 and Trinidad and Tobago on Jan. 20. The top team from Group A earns an automatic berth in the U-20 World Cup while the second through fourth place teams will compete in a playoff against their counterparts from Group B.
LA Galaxy fans will still need to wait about seven months until Steven Gerrard suits up for the club, but it's very apparent that the 34-year-old Liverpool FC legend will be in top form once he arrives.
On Friday morning during Liverpool's preparations for Saturday's match against Sunderland (4:45 am on NBCSN/mun2) at their training ground Melwood, Gerrard delivered an impressive left-footed volley that sailed into the back of the net.
Watch the goal above.
Excited to see what Gerrard will bring once he arrives? How closely will you be watching Liverpool FC's games now?
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Jurgen Klinsmann says injury the reason that LA Galaxy defender Omar Gonzalez omitted from USMNT January camp roster
Oscar Sorto and Gyasi Zardes will be the LA Galaxy's representatives at the U.S. National Team's annual January camp, but there was one notable omission: USMNT defensive mainstay Omar Gonzalez.
Although there was some initial worry from the Twitterverse about why Gonzalez had been dropped, U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann told U.S. Soccer's official website that a nagging injury prevented the LA Galaxy defender from being included in the squad.
"When you put together the roster for January Camp, you eventually talk to the players, you talk to their club coaches and everyone is in a bit of a different situation," Klinsmann said. "The season here has a different schedule than overseas or in Mexico, and here and there you run into issues with players that you think it’s better if they maybe keep on curing some injuries, like in the case of Omar Gonzalez or Graham Zusi. They are not fully fit yet, so we decided to say ‘take it easy going into pre-season of your club team’."
UPDATE: Fox Soccer's Alexi Lalas provided an update on Gonzalez via Twitter saying that he is undergoing "proactive knee maintenance"
— Alexi Lalas (@AlexiLalas) January 9, 2015
Gonzalez enjoyed a strong year for the U.S. in 2014 as he appeared in his first FIFA World Cup while also making eight appearances for Klinsmann's side.
LA Galaxy Homegrowns Oscar Sorto and Gyasi Zardes called up to the U.S. National Team's annual January camp
CARSON, Calif. -- Oscar Sorto and Gyasi Zardes have officially gone from the LA Galaxy Academy all the way to the U.S. National Team.
Galaxy Homegrown Players Oscar Sorto and Gyasi Zardes were among the 28-man roster named by U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann for the team's annual January camp at StubHub Center from Jan. 12 to Feb. 8. The training camp will end with a pair of matches for the U.S. against Chile in South America on Jan. 28 and against CONCACAF rivals Panama on Feb. 8 at StubHub Center.
The call-ups will be the first from the senior team for both Sorto and Zardes. While Zardes carries no tournament experience, the 20-year-old Sorto was a member of the U.S. Under-20 squad during their participation in the 2013 FIFA U-20 World Cup.
The inclusions of youngsters like Sorto and Zardes are part of Klinsmann's stated goal of bringing in Olympic-eligible players as the USMNT looks ahead to not only the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup this summer, but also the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil. The U.S. Under-23's famously missed out on the 2012 Olympic Games in London which were won by CONCACAF archrivals Mexico.
“The prize in 2015 for the senior National Team is the Gold Cup, and this camp will give a lot of our players a chance to kick start their preparations for an important year,” Klinsmann said. “We also get an opportunity to introduce the next wave of young players into the program, and in particular work with many of our Olympic-age guys as they build toward qualifying for the 2016 Olympics in Rio.”
The complete U.S. roster is below.
GOALKEEPERS (4): Alex Bono (unattached), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire), Jon Kempin (Sporting Kansas City), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS (8): Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), Steve Birnbaum (D.C. United), Christian Dean (Vancouver Whitecaps FC), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders FC), Jermaine Jones (New England Revolution), Perry Kitchen (D.C. United), Shane O’Neill (Colorado Rapids), Oscar Sorto (LA Galaxy)
MIDFIELDERS (10): Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Mix Diskerud (out of contract), Dennis Flores (Club Leon), Luis Gil (Real Salt Lake), Miguel Ibarra (Minnesota United FC), Lee Nguyen (New England Revolution), Marc Pelosi (Liverpool FC), Dillon Serna (Colorado Rapids), Brek Shea (Orlando City SC), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew)
FORWARDS (6): Tesho Akindele (FC Dallas), Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders FC), Julio Morales (Tepic), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes), Bobby Wood (1860 Munich), Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy)