CARSON, Calif. – LA Galaxy forward Robbie Keane has turned the page, shut the door and moved on completely from Thursday’s friendly against Real Madrid in order to focus on Sunday’s crucial league match against the Seattle Sounders.
Keane had several dangerous opportunities on Thursday, but was denied repeatedly by Madrid’s star goalkeeper Iker Casillas. Performances against Real Madrid aside, Keane enjoyed a stellar month of July in which he tallied five goals and four assists en route to being named MLS Player of the Month. The Irish forward will face another stiff test on Sunday against a motivated Seattle team that is currently undefeated in their last eight matches throughout all competitions.
Keane’s comments from Friday’s training session are below…
(On getting the friendlies out of the way to prepare for Seattle…)
KEANE: “Of course, the last couple of weeks have gotten in the way of preparation for the games that are important so it’s finished now and we looked forward to Sunday’s game.
(On the magnitude of Sunday’s match…)
KEANE: “It’s one of the big games and it’s a game that we’re all looking forward to. As I said, it’s nice to get the other games out of the way so we can focus for a couple of days on Sunday’s game. It’s going to be a big game, but with the way that we’re playing and the way that the team is set up, we can go there and certainly get a result.”
(On whether or not he watches the standings…)
KEANE: “No. Not interested to be honest with you. I’ve never been that kind of player, I don’t worry about results and I always look forward. Always, since I’ve been a kid, it’s been the same thing so I never worry about the past. It’s just something that has always been in me. When you since you're 17 at the highest level…it’s installed in you and I think that when you’re a soccer player, there’s upsets and when you’re a striker, you miss chances or you don’t score so it’s important that you blank it out of your mind as soon as possible. And that’s what I’ve learned to do over the last ten years or so.”
(On what he expects from Seattle….)
KEANE: “It’s always good to play in front of good crowds and it certainly makes the game and for players, you always want to be involved in games like this. I’m used to playing in front of 60 thousand a week in the UK, so for me it’s a normal thing but I know the Seattle fans and certainly when we played against Portland, the fans were magnificent as well. So it’s a major game and I look forward to playing in games like that.”
(On Seattle’s performance as of late…)
KEANE: “I don’t we have to worry too much about what they do, I think it’s about what we do. As I said, the way we’re playing at the moment, if we continue to keep progressing, we have every chance to heading in and getting a result.”
(On a rivalry with Seattle…)
KEANE: “I think that’s the case with very team in the league. We’re kind of the team that everyone wants to beat so we’ve earned that reputation and we’ve done that. Certainly last year with the way that we played and the way that we won the championship and in that respect, it’s kind of flattering rather than taking it too serious. Because they know we’re a good team so we look forward to it and hopefully we can go in and get a good result.”
(On whether or not he considers Seattle a rival…)
KEANE: “I don’t consider anyone a rival, I’m a loving person.”
CARSON, Calif. -- Hungry after a disappointing showing during the USSDA Development Academy Playoffs, the LA Galaxy youth academy is hoping for a strong showing in the upcoming Generation Adidas Cup.
The tournament takes place from August 3rd to August 9th in Seattle, Washington with games taking place at Valley Ridge Park Soccer Fields and Starfire Sports Complex. The U17s enter as reigning GA Cup champions and find themselves in Group B alongside USSDA Champions FC Dallas, D.C. United and Toronto FC. Meanwhile the Galaxy U15s are in Group B with the Chicago Fire, Colorado Rapids and Philadelphia Union.
The U15s began their schedule on Friday morning against the Union and continue with matches against the Colorado Rapids on Saturday at 2pm and the Fire on Monday at 11am. The U17s start their tournament on Friday afternoon at 3pm against Toronto FC. The reigning GA Cup champions then take on D.C. United on Saturday at 8pm before closing the tournament against FC Dallas at 4pm. The match against FCD promises to be a tantizling one as the two teams faced off for the championship last year with the Galaxy defeating Dallas, 2-0.
We'll have more updates as the tournament progresses.
CARSON, Calif. -- In the 85th minute of Real Madrid's 5-1 victory over the LA Galaxy, the capacity crowd of 30,317 at The Home Depot Center stood at attention as Madrid star Cristano Ronaldo lined up a stunning bicycle kick that seemed destined for the back of the net, but the fans were denied their goal by some quick thinking from LA Galaxy goalkeeper Brian Perk.
The save against Ronaldo was not the only highlight as Perk made several fantastic saves throughout the second half stopping shots from Karim Benzema and others during LA's friendly defeat.
Below are Perk's thoughts in text and a post game interview....
(On the performance...)
PERK: "It was fun. It's a once or twice in a lifetime I guess now, it's always good to play against the best players in the world and see them up close and personal."
(On his acrobatic saves...)
PERK: "Lucky, acrobatic, you can call it what you want. It was fun and it was a good thing that I gave a pretty good account of myself."
(On what he learned from the match...)
PERK: "Just speed of play, how much quicker their thought process is and everything that they do is so much quicker. It's really good to see it done at the highest level."
CARSON, Calif. – Two friendlies, two goals for LA Galaxy defender David Junior Lopes.
The hulking Brazilian defender tallied a goal during the club’s 5-1 defeat to Real Madrid. The goal was Lopes’ second in a friendly in two weeks after he scored during LA’s 1-1 draw with English Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur on July 24th.
Below are Lopes’ quotes from the match…
(On his secret to scoring goals in friendlies…)
LOPES: I swear to God, there’s nothing. It’s just a lot of luck, but more than that I want to score a goal in MLS and that’s the championship and that’s what we focus on. Today was fine, but what we want is three points to get closer to the championship.”
(On his partnership with Omar Gonzalez…)
LOPES: “We’re definitely playing good right now. We showed against Dallas that we’re playing great, but today we didn’t show it so much because Madrid, let’s be honest, is Madrid. I’m not sure what happened on the field, but there wasn’t a lot of communication. At the league level, we communicate well, but tonight there wasn’t.”
(On what the Galaxy take from the game…)
LOPES: “Communication, we can definitely communicate better so what happened tonight doesn’t happen during a league game. Because if this happens again, then we won’t get three points and we won’t be winning the championship.”
(On whether playing well could lead to a future in Europe…)
LOPES: “Definitely, there’s an opportunity to play in Europe, but MLS is a league that’s growing and there are many opportunities within.”
(On the crowd…)
LOPES: “I’m so happy because every day the stadium is full and that’s good for me, the players, the staff and the people so I’m so happy.”
CARSON, Calif. – David Beckham went 45 minutes for the LA Galaxy against Real Madrid on Thursday night, but the head coach for the Spanish giants Jose Mourinho felt that Beckham should have been thousands of miles away with the Great Britain Olympic team.
After helping London win the bid to host the 2012 Olympics, Beckham was not selected to the Great Britain team by manager Stuart Pearce in a move that drew considerable hostility from the British media and public.
Although Beckham played a key role in the Opening Ceremonies and is expected to attend the closing events next week, Mourinho—who also played a role in London’s winning bid—was shocked by his exclusion from Team GB.
“I don’t understand and I know because I was also inside of that project. If now the Olympic Games are in London and because of him, because of Seb Coe and other people, but he was the most important face of that project. I don’t understand why he is not playing there. I can not understand," Mourinho said during the postgame press conference. "I think you have a group of 18 players, you have football qualities to give, human qualities to give and I think that he is one of the best soccer professionals to express what is the ideal of Pierre de Coubertin [the founder of the modern Olympics]. I’m so sorry that he is not there. For me, I was also participating in the London project and I don’t understand why such a big personality in that project is now playing in this match when he should be in London.”
We're just hours away from tonight's friendly between the LA Galaxy and Real Madrid so here are a few links and reminders ahead of tonight's clash.
Fans are encouraged to arrive early to the match due to the massive crowds expected.
Before heading to The HDC, remember to check out my Three Points to the game.
For more coverage on the match check out LAGalaxy.com's Match Report.
PREDICTED LINEUP vs. Real Madrid: GK: Saunders; RB: DeLaGarza, CB: Gonzalez, CB: Lopes; LB: Gaul; RM: Franklin, CM: Juninho, CM: Beckham, LM: Magee; F: Donovan, F: Keane
During a slow start to the season, the LA Galaxy needed someone to step up to lead the club back into the playoff chase and in the month of July, Robbie Keane delivered.
Major League Soccer announced on Thursday that Keane was voted as MLS' Player of the Month for July by the North American Soccer Reporters. After returning from European Championship duty with Ireland, Keane went on a tear during the month of July tallying five goals while notching four assists during the Galaxy's 4-1-1 run. Keane and the Galaxy's other Designated Players were integral during the club's run in the month of July as Landon Donovan, David Beckham and Keane combined for 11 goals and 11 assists in July.
The award is Keane's first MLS Player of the Month and the first for a Galaxy player during the 2012 season.
The LA Galaxy are asking fans to arrive to The Home Depot Center early for Thursday's friendly with Real Madrid as a potential record-breaking crowd is expected.
With the parking lots expected to reach capacity due to the expected crowd of over 30,000, fans are being asked to arrive early or utilize public transportation when traveling to the game. The Galaxy have also teamed up with the Artesia Transit Center and South Bay Pavilion to offer shuttles to The HDC from those locations. Shuttle buses began running at Artesia -- fine location, I've traveled from there several times -- at 10 a.m. and will do so until 3 a.m on Friday morning while shuttles will run from South Bay Pavilion from 4:30 p.m. to 1 a.m on Friday.
For those fans that arrive early, The HDC will provide $2 hot dogs and $5 beers from the time that the gates open at 5 p.m. to 6 p.m.
A couple of other notes and links on Tonight's game below:
* The Galaxy will be wearing their "Punjab" kits against Real Madrid, who are expected to wear their iconic all-whites.
A video preview of the match is below:
The LA Galaxy are still three weeks away from the start of their CONCACAF Champions League campaign, but the rest of Group 5 is already in full swing.
On Wednesday, A.D. Isidro Metapán (El Salvador) defeated the Puerto Rico Islanders, 3-1 at the Estadio Jorge Calero Suárez in Metapán, El Salvador.
Puerto Rico struck first blood in the 25th minute with a goal by Islanders' Nicolas Addlery, but allowed Metapán back in the match when the Islanders went down to 10 men after Jay Needham was sent off in the 35th minute. With a man advantage, Metapán's Nicolás Muñoz tallied three second half goals to lead the Salvadoran club to victory.
The LA Galaxy start CCL play when they host Metapán at The Home Depot Center on August 23rd.
CARSON, Calif. -- Todd Dunivant is on the comeback trail, but it remains to be seen when the left back will return to the Galaxy starting XI.
Dunivant has been on the shelf since suffering an injury that was diagnosed as a right calf hematoma during the Galaxy’s 2-2 draw with the Vancouver Whitecaps on July 19th. In the meantime, the left back position has been manned quite successfully by rookie defender Bryan Gaul.
The 31-year-old left back returned to full training on Tuesday and while Dunivant is optimistic about his recovery, he has not set a clear timeline for a return to action. Following Wednesday’s practice session, I caught up with Dunivant and discussed his recovery process.
Dunivant’s quotes are below…
(On his condition…)
DUNIVANT: “I’m feeling a lot better. I had a good day of training for the first time and yesterday was a hard day since it was really my first day of doing anything substantial on the field. I did some fitness work and some ball work so now two days back and I’m feeling stronger and I’m hoping to be back soon.”
(On how the injury happened…)
DUNIVANT: “It was a really freak play, it was the four minute mark in the Vancouver game. I kind of caught tangled up with Dane Richards and I think he just ended up kicking me in the back of my lower leg right beneath my calf. Just immediately when I took a step down, I could feel extreme pain in the back then in the front, it felt like shin splints and felt like a bad strain in the back. I pushed through it for another 20 minutes, but it was painful and by halftime, I could hardly walk to the locker room. It turned out to be a hematoma with all the blood and swelling filled up in the different compartments in my lower leg. It was one of those things where we just had to get rid of it. And it took about ten days to do it. All in all, compared to what I was doing a week ago when I couldn’t put weight on it running, today I was training and I’m pretty happy about that.”
(On his timeline to return to the field…)
DUNIVANT: “We’ll see. So far, we’ve been taking it day by day and even yesterday, we didn’t know that I’d be able to train as much as I did today so that’s a good sign. We’re targeting as soon as possible, but we’ll see about the weekend and so far so good in training.”
(On Bryan Gaul’s performance filling in for him…)
DUNIVANT: “He’s stepped in and done a great job. We knew that he would, he’s been training all year, but he’s still new to the position so from that standpoint, he’s done fantastic. He’s just picking it up as he goes and it’s not easy when you go up against guys like Jackson [FC Dallas] and Ryan Smith at Chivas so hats off to him because he’s done great.”
(On whether or not Gaul’s performance spurs him to return faster…)
DUNIVANT: “We got to have people step up and we’re starting to see that with our team. Earlier in the year, nobody was performing up to their capabilities and now everyone is. That’s why we’re doing well and guys are going to be out with injuries and various things so people are going to have to step up. I think you saw that in Dallas with a Landon [Donovan] out and David [Beckham] out, that’s a sign of a good team and we need that.”