CARSON, Calif. – A nagging sports hernia injury sidelined LA Galaxy goalkeeper Brian Perk, but now fully recovered, the backup goalkeeper is hungry to get back on the training field.
The Galaxy backup ‘keeper has been sidelined since March 16 after undergoing sports hernia surgery, which allowed LA’s third goalkeeper Brian Rowe to slide into the second spot behind starting ‘keeper Carlo Cudicini. His recovery finally completed, Perk returned to training this week.
“I feel really excited to get back as opposed to when you’ve been training for two months; you take it a little for granted. When you’ve been out for a month and some change, it’s really exciting,” Perk told LA Galaxy Insider. “It’s good to be back with all the guys, I missed them for a good two weeks. It’s not normal and it feels good to get back with everyone.”
First things first, however, as Perk understands that he must impress in training to win back his role as LA’s first choice backup.
“You always have to earn it back,” said Perk. “Brian Rowe obviously looks really good and is playing well as of late. I have to come in and work hard because nothing is given to you and I know that.”
Head coach Bruce Arena, who kept an eagle eye on Perk during his recuperation from surgery, has been impressed thus far.
“He looks good. He looks like he is fully recovered,” Arena said. “He’s done a good job of rehabilitating from surgery and he’s ready to go.”
The 23-year-old will look to make his first appearance since the preseason on Sunday when the Galaxy take on Real Salt Lake in Reserve League play. The match would be Perk’s first appearance since the Galaxy’s 6-2 preseason victory over Club Tijuana on February 19.
“We haven’t talked about it yet [with the coaching staff], we’ll see how the end of the week goes, but I’m going to be pushing for minutes, but those things are up to Bruce so we’ll see,” said Perk.
If he does see time in that reserve fixture, it’d be a major boost to Perk’s continued recovery.
“It’d be great, especially so quickly after I got healthy. To get however minutes would be great,” Perk said. “It’d help get the motions back and since we have a lot of games coming up. I’ll do anything to do what I can to get on the field when Bruce sees fit.”
Major League Soccer added an assist for Marcelo Sarvas for his role in creating Landon Donovan's goal in the 74th minute of the LA Galaxy's 2-0 victory over Sporting Kansas City last Saturday.
The assist is the Brazilian midfielder's second of 2013 and fourth since joining the Galaxy at the start of the 2012 season. The ruling by MLS means that both Donovan and Sarvas finished the game with a goal and an assist.
See Sarvas' pass that help set up the goal below..
Three players with LA Galaxy connections were called up by U.S. Under-20 head coach Tab Ramos for the team's upcoming camp at The Home Depot Center from April 22 to April 29.
Galaxy Homegrown Players Oscar Sorto and Jose Villarreal were named to the squad along with Galaxy Academy defender Javan Torre. The training camp will likely serve as one of the final proving grounds for players ahead of the 2013 U-20 World Cup in Turkey which takes place from June 21 to July 13.
The camp is an immense opportunity for Sorto who has not been called up since prior to the CONCACAF U-20 World Cup in February. During the training camp, Sorto will be locked into a battle for the contentious the starting right back position along with Seattle Sounders FC's DeAndre Yedlin.
Torre and Villarreal were both regulars for the U-20's during their second-place finish in Puebla.
Another former member of the Galaxy Academy, Jeffrey Payeras who is currently with Guatemalan giants C.S.D Municipal was also called by Ramos.
The complete roster is below...
GOALKEEPERS: Cody Cropper (Southampton FC; Maple Grove, Minn.), Kendall McIntosh (Santa Clara; Santa Rosa, Calif.)
DEFENDERS: AJ Cochran (Wisconsin; St. Louis, Mo.), Sean Cunningham (Molde FK; Troy, Mich.), Eric Miller (Creighton; Woodbury, Minn.), Juan Pablo Ocegueda (C.D. Guadalajara; Riverside, Calif.), Jeffrey Payeras (C.S.D. Municipal; Hawthorne, Calif.), Oscar Sorto (LA Galaxy; Los Angeles, Calif.), Javan Torre (UCLA; Santa Monica, Calif.), DeAndre Yedlin (Seattle Sounders; Seattle, Wash.)
MIDFIELDERS: Kellyn Acosta (FC Dallas; Plano, Texas), Marlon Hairston (Louisville; Jackson, Miss.), Benji Joya (Santos Laguna; San Jose, Calif.), Mikey Lopez (Sporting Kansas City; Mission, Texas), Collin Martin (Wake Forest; Chevy Chase, Md.), Dillon Serna (Colorado Rapids; Brighton, Colo.), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew; Gahanna, Ohio)
FORWARDS: Daniel Cuevas (Santos Laguna; Sacramento, Calif.), Daniel Garcia (North Carolina; Dallas, Texas), Alfred Koroma (Akron; Southlake, Texas), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders Academy; Mercer Island, Wash.), Victor Pineda (Chicago Fire; Bolingbrook, Ill.), Omar Salgado (Vancouver Whitecaps; El Paso, Texas), Jose Villarreal (LA Galaxy; Inglewood, Calif.)
CARSON, Calif. -- Landon Donovan had a message for his MLS opponents after notching a goal and an assist in the LA Galaxy's 2-0 win over Sporting Kansas City: “Don’t count the old guy out just yet, I still have a little bit left to give.”
Below several of Donovan's teammates talk about his performance:
ROBBIE KEANE: “You have to give people a bit of time. It takes a four or five games to get into the swings of things. It doesn’t matter how much fitness you do away from the team or on the training field, it’s the match sharpness that is the one that is going to get you and that will only come with playing 90 minutes most week. He’s played three or four games now and when you score a goal and set one up it breeds confidence.”
TODD DUNIVANT: "He was great. Definitely his best performance yet. He's gotten better and better, we know that it is still going to take more time for him to get back to his standard, but to have him where he is now is great. It obviously makes a huge difference of opening up the game and getting in behind defenses."
A.J. DELAGARZA: "I told him earlier that he was going to get his first goal tonight and Robbie gave him a peach so it was great for him to get that momentum and confidence and hopefully he can score some more."
MARCELO SARVAS: "He's getting back and back. He missed preseason and, of course, he needs time. We've trained two or three months more than him, but now he's getting his shape back. Just give him time."
What did you think of Donovan's showing? Expect more next week?
Share your thoughts below.
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy picked up a 2-0 victory over Sporting Kansas City on Saturday to move to 3-1-2 on the year.
A few notes are below....
*Marcelo Sarvas' goal snapped LA's streak of 279 minutes and was the first goal since A.J. DeLaGarza scored in the 17th minute of the Galaxy's 2-1 defeat to Monterrey on April 3.
*Sporting Kansas City's shutout streak ended at 545 minutes, which is fifth-best in MLS history and second-best in Kansas City's club history.
*The LA Galaxy snap their winless mark at four games in all competitions.
*LA's 2-0 win over Sporting is the club's fourth shutout of the season and first since March 23.
*The crowd of 25,908 was the largest of crowd of the year to date at The Home Depot Center.
*Landon Donovan's goal was his first in 2013.
Agree with my observations?
Share your thoughts below.
CARSON, Calif. – The LA Galaxy earned a hard-fought 2-0 victory over Sporting Kansas City on Saturday evening to snap a four-game winless streak, but although the scoreline was flattering, LA had plenty of respect for their dispatched opponent.
Prior to Marcelo Sarvas’ goal in the 27th minute, Sporting had strung together a 545 minute shutout streak, which is the fifth best in MLS history. Even after the goal, the game remained a back-and-forth affair with both sides testing one another until Landon Donovan scored the dagger in the 74th minute of play to put the game out of reach.
While the season may just be in its infancy, based on Saturday’s performance and Sporting’s early success, Donovan admitted that he would not be surprised to see Sporting in the thick of things come playoff time.
“They’re a very good team. I would guess that team would look different if they hadn't played in New York on Wednesday and traveled here,” Donovan told reporters. “There’s no question they didn’t have everything they normally do, but they still put up a good fight. They’re a good team and I wouldn't be surprised if they end up coming out of the East.”
Donovan also had plenty of praise for Kansas City midfielder Graham Zusi, who many consider to be the heir apparent to the Galaxy veteran with the U.S. National Team.
“I think Graham has been terrific. Aside from the on the field stuff, I think that he’s handled everything really well,” said Donovan referring to the pressure Zusi has faced. “I know that he gets asked a lot about all this stuff and I said to him after the game that he’s doing a great job of handling it. You could tell tonight that he wasn't completely on his game, but he has moments where he has something special.
“I think that he’s done a great job, he’s someone that deserves to be where he’s at and I look forward to continuing to battle back and forth with him and continue to push each other.”
For a look at how Sporting Kansas City reacted to their 2-0 defeat to the LA Galaxy, a quote sheet is provided below.
Check it out...
SPORTING KANSAS CITY HEAD COACH PETER VERMES
On how he viewed his team’s performance:
“I actually thought up until the goal we were actually pretty good. Look, it’s a handball. It doesn’t get called and it breaks us a little bit right at that point. Now here we are, we already have the fatigue aspect to deal with and now we’re trying to chase the game after a goal gets scored based on an easy call by the referee and it doesn’t happen. At that point we go in at halftime trying to chase the game a little bit, coming back in the second half. Obviously the fatigue and the goal opened us up a little bit more. The second goal doesn’t really doesn’t mean anything at the end of the day based on the fact that we were trying to push forward to get back in the game at that point. It’s a tough road trip the way we had to travel.”
On the Galaxy’s pressing style of play:
“I think they were good tonight. They were good from front to back. I thought their energy was good. I will say though that we turned them over quite a few times in that first 30 minutes up until that goal. Then we started chasing and it sits in your mind you get a little fatigued and now all of a sudden we start to open up and I still think up to that point we were pretty decent and being away from home and trying to play against somebody is who we are and we’re going to keep doing it.”
On Sporting’s shutout streak coming to a close:
“I really don’t care personally about the shutout streak. All I care is that we have a clean sheet at the end of the game, we scored one or two then obviously we get the points. It’s a shame in a game like this because I think they’re two good teams, for a goal to be scored that way. You have center ref, you got linesman and you got fourth official and the fourth official is right there I mean he had a great view of it and for that not to happen between the three of them is a failure in the system. Those guys made a mistake for sure. I spoke to Ricardo but at that point, what are you going to do? I wish we had instant replay, that’d be great.”
SPORTING KANSAS CITY GOALKEEPER JIMMY NIELSEN
On that Galaxy’s attack:
“Well, they were definitely better than we were today. It’s disappointing from my point of view with our performance today. Huge game, big game, in my opinion two of the better teams in the league and we didn’t perform at all. Overall, credit to LA, they were better than we were today.”
On Sporting’s shutout streak coming to a close:
“It’s disappointing the way we performed, that’s what’s disappointing. Not the shutout [streak ending]. Big games like this, you just don’t play bad like we did today. Right now I’m extremely disappointed and sad that we couldn’t perform better on a fantastic night like this, full stadium, two big teams, very disappointed.”
SPORTING KANSAS CITY DEFENDER MATT BESLER
On the physical nature of the game:
“LA is a great team so we knew coming in that it was going to be a battle. It was a dogfight, there was a lot of physical play especially in the middle of the field tonight.”
On the Galaxy’s attack:
“We knew coming in it was going to be a difficult challenge. LA is one of the best teams in the league and when they’re playing well they’re a tough team to beat at home so we have to give the credit to them. And for us, it just wasn’t good enough for tonight and we’ll have to make it better for our next game.”
On breaking down the Galaxy prior to the game:
“We had a few areas we wanted to expose but again, credit to them. They played a great game. We weren’t able to break them down and they got two against us. So, credit has to go to them.”
SPORTING KANSAS CITY FORWARD GRAHAM ZUSI
On Sporting’s approach early on and how they veered away from it:
“After the first 15 minutes of good pressure and balance, we got away from that for one reason or another. Our initial pressure on the ball disappeared and allowed them to move the ball up the field at their liking. And that’s when they can cause some problems. Given that much time on the ball, their movement off the ball is very good as well. We kind of fell apart defensively and allowed them to get a couple goals.”
On Landon Donovan’s return to the Galaxy and his performance tonight:
“It wasn’t that long of an absence but Landon’s a great player, always has been always will be. I don’t think you saw him miss a beat out there. He was a key on both of their goals and he’s looking like Landon of old.”
Would you like to see more of these sheets from the opposition included in blog posts?
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CARSON, Calif. – Landon Donovan earned the headlines during the LA Galaxy’s 2-0 victory over Sporting Kansas City, but Marcelo Sarvas was arguably the finest player on the field for LA.
Sarvas and Juninho led the Galaxy’s midfield pressure which overwhelmed Sporting’s midfield. As a result, LA created several scoring opportunities on the counter including Sarvas’ goal in the 27th minute. The play created some controversy as many believed that Sarvas’ committed a handball after controlling a turnover by Sporting’s Oriol Rosell.
The goal wasn’t the only stellar aspect of Sarvas’ performance as the Brazilian was nearly flawless in his distribution as he finished the game with 42 completed passes out of 51 attempts along with 10 tackles won and two interceptions.
Although Sarvas called the performance the Galaxy’s best of the season over 90 minutes, he admitted that LA had shown shades of this type of showing earlier in the season.
“Today we won the game, that’s why it seems better, but we are doing this every game. “The spirit is on how team goes to the field. We always go to press and win games. All of our lines were in good position and everything they had the ball, we were close to steal the ball and make turnovers then go on the counter attack.”
And as for that hand ball shout on his goal, was it one?
“I don’t think so,” said Sarvas. “I had no intention to hit the ball, I stole the ball and the ball came up. It’s about interpretation of the referee and I thought he did well.”
But would he have been angered if it was called?
CARSON, Calif. -- LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena offered his thoughts following Saturday's 2-0 LA Galaxy victory over Sporting Kansas City.
Arena's thoughts are below.
(On his general thoughts following the game...)
ARENA: "A more complete match for us, pretty solid over 90 minutes. Obviously not perfect, but I think that we haven't closed games out the right way this year, we haven't played well in the last 15 minutes of games and I think tonight, we did that. Obviously, the second goal was important, it was a great combination between [Robbie] Keane and [Landon] Donovan and obviously, the first half, [Marcelo] Sarvas' goal was a big goal. Overall, a pretty solid performance by our team over 90 minutes."
(On Landon Donovan's performance...)
ARENA: "A much improved performance. He played well...You see every game, he's getting better."
(On the back four's play...)
ARENA: "I think the entire back line played a good game tonight, obviously, A.J. [DeLaGarza] and Omar [Gonzalez] are pretty comfortable with each other, I thought Sean [Franklin] and Todd [Dunivant] did well, but collectively as a team, it was much more complete, which certainly helps our back line."
(On how Jack McBean's decision making is improving...)
ARENA: "Fine. He's still a young player at 18-years-old and I thought that he gave us a solid performance tonight."
CARSON, Calif. -- We're hours away from Saturday night's match between the LA Galaxy and Sporting KC. Before you head to the match, check out a series of links, matchups to watch and my predicted lineup....
*Landon Donovan is hoping that this is the week that it "all comes together."
*Jose Villarreal suffered a shoulder knock during a Reserve League game on Monday, but he is confident that he'll be available against Sporting.
*LA will look to break the Sporting KC shutout streak which currently sits at 512 minutes. I talk to the Galaxy about snapping the streak here.
*Could Gyasi Zardes make the gameday roster or is it a bridge too far for the youngster?
*LAGalaxy.com's Larry Morgan has provided his preview of the game.
*Lastly, check out my Three Points to the match.
MATCHUPS TO WATCH:
Robbie Keane vs. Aurélien Collin
Keane is expected to return to the Galaxy starting lineup and will be greeted by the flamboyant French center back, who is fresh off shutting down Thierry Henry in Sporting's midweek match against New York Red Bulls. Expect Keane to attempt to pull Collin -- and his partner in central defense Matt Besler -- out of position to open up space for the likes of Donovan and Mike Magee.
Todd Dunivant vs. Graham Zusi
The technical right midfielder will provide fits for Dunivant, who is expected to return to the Galaxy starting XI. Positioning will be key in this battle as Zusi has a knack for getting behind opposing defenses and firing crosses into the box.
Omar Gonzalez vs. Claudio Bieler
Bieler has been one of the best additions in MLS so far this season with four goals to date, but he'll face a stiff challenge in Gonzalez, who is currently in the best form of his career right now.
Cudicini; Franklin, Gonzalez, DeLaGarza, Dunivant; Donovan, Juninho, Sarvas, Magee; Keane, McBean
What are your prediction for Saturday's match? What lineup do you see LA using?
Share your thoughts below.