CARSON, Calif. – An injury layoff firmly behind him, Mike Magee is ready to play and could return as soon as this Saturday for the LA Galaxy's match against FC Dallas.
Sidelined since the Galaxy’s July 4th match against the Philadelphia Union with right shin hematoma, Magee believes that he is back to full fitness after a 45 minute stint against Tottenham Hotspur on Tuesday. After training on Thursday, both Magee and Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena told reporters that the midfielder had returned to full fitness.
Magee’s thoughts below…
(On getting on the field against Tottenham…)
MAGEE: “It was good, I was nervous for the first time in awhile, obviously with the atmosphere. It was a great game so to come into that one was a lot of fun.
(On the status of his injured shin…)
MAGEE: “The leg is good, it’s all better. It was kind of nerve-wracking for a little bit, knowing that every time that I ran, my leg was going a bit numb, but now it’s fine and I’m happy with that.”
(On what the injury was specifically…)
MAGEE: “I had a hematoma on my right shin. Essentially I just took a hard knock and had some blood clots in my leg that were pinching some nerves.”
(On when the injury cleared up…)
MAGEE: “The day before the game. I had to get a full day of training without any tingle before they let me play and the day before I trained and Bruce let me play.”
(On his excitement heading into that first day of training…)
Magee: “I was begging. I think I felt a little tingle at the beginning, but I didn’t say anything because I wanted to make sure that I got out there.”
(On his ability to go 90 minutes against FC Dallas…)
MAGEE: “Yeah, I’m ready. I’m ready for whatever role that Bruce lets me fill.”
David Beckham and Landon Donovan each played a role in creating a goal as the MLS All-Stars defeated Chelsea FC, 3-2 at PPL Park in Chester, PA. on Wednesday night.
Donovan started and went 45 minutes for the All-Stars while also aiding in the build up that led to Chris Wondolowski's opening goal in the 21st minute. Meanwhile, just hours after landing in Philadelphia from his duties in London, Beckham played 74 minutes for the All-Stars and helped set up Chris Pontius' strike in the 73rd minute. Following the game, Beckham immediately returned to London where he is expected to play a role in Friday's Olympic opening ceremonies.
I'll have more after training this morning, but until then, enjoy this interview with Beckham by MLSsoccer.com's Jackie Montgomery.
CARSON, Calif. -- Following the LA Galaxy's 1-1 draw with Tottenham Hotspur, Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena offered his seal of approval to the New York Red Bulls rumored signing of Australian midfielder Tim Cahill.
The deal, which reportedly will see the Everton midfielder join New York as a designated player has not yet been announced, but according to Red Bulls forward Thierry Henry, the deal is contingent on Cahill completing a medical. After LA's draw on Tuesday, Arena - who served as the Red Bulls manager from 2006 to 2007 -- pegged the Australian for greatness with New York.
“I know him for years after observing him with Everton and Australia. He’s an excellent player and I was surprised that he made the move to MLS if he did, I don’t know if it’s been finalized," said Arena in his post game press conference. "But he’s a very good player; I’ve obviously seen him a lot because of Landon [Donovan] in particular. I know David Moyes in particular, he’s a great manager and Cahill’s been an excellent player at Everton so one would think that he’s going to be an excellent addition to the New York Red Bulls. He’s a player with a lot of good years in him and I’m sure that he’ll bring a good attitude, energy and experience to that club.”
CARSON, Calif. – LA Galaxy rookie Rafael Garcia is still learning the right back position and during the club’s 1-1 draw with Tottenham Hotspur, the midfielder turned outside back received the lesson of a lifetime.
In his 45 minute stint against Tottenham, the rookie from Cal-State Northridge was matched up against the likes of Gareth Bale and Aaron Lennon, who orchestrated the Spurs attack as they pushed for the go-ahead goal. Despite having just a handful of appearances at the position under his belt, Garcia did not shy away from the challenge as he helped the Galaxy defense grind out a draw against the English Premier League club.
Garcia's thoughts are below...
(On being out there against top players…)
GARCIA: “It’s a great experience. Going up against Bale was certainly not easy and then going up against Lennon too. It certainly was not easy, but I gave my all and I like to think that I did pretty well.”
(On settling into outside back…)
GARCIA: “It’s not my natural position, but when you get the opportunity, you need to learn how to adapt quickly, but it was good for me. I enjoyed my time there.”
(On what Bruce Arena has told him about playing as an outside back…)
GARCIA: “For me, it’s all about getting minutes. I’ll do it any position so for me it was a good experience and any position that he wants to play me, I’ll be happy to contribute.”
(On how the rookies performed in the second half…)
GARCIA: “You know, I thought we did pretty well at times. They got in behind us a few times, but I thought we defended well overall and we had maybe one or two chances, but against a team like that if you get one or two chances then you take them. One thing about the young guys is that we’re trying to prove ourselves and any chances we get we’re going out there and we’re fighting till the end.”
CARSON, Calif. – Energy is a key part of Michael Stephens' game so it was no surprise that the LA Galaxy midfielder was the only player from the Galaxy to go the full 90 minutes in Tuesday night's 1-1 draw with Tottenham Hotspur.
In 90 minutes of action against Spurs, Stephens was able to provide constant pressure on the Tottenham midfield as he helped the Galaxy hold on to the draw. But in the end, it wasn't just Stephens' grit that made an impact as he also played a role in helping Marcelo Sarvas set up David Junior Lopes' game-tying-goal in the 28th minute of play.
Stephens’ post game thoughts are below:
(On his role in Lopes’ goal…)
STEPHENS: “I waited too long. If I had given it to Marcelo earlier, he could have had a better shot. I took too long and I gave it to Marcelo and that was his only choice at that point, but it worked out.”
(On the team’s play in the first half…)
STEPHENS: “I felt like in the first half especially, they had a high line and we did a good job playing some longer balls and ended up getting some breakaways.”
(On Robbie Keane’s confidence level vs. his old team…)
STEPHENS: “I don’t know but I thought that he looked really good. I thought he had a really good game, he was getting a lot of the ball and he was helping us a lot in the first half by being an outlet.”
(On what he learned…)
STEPHENS: “The one thing is when they get the ball; they go forward and they go forward quickly. I think that most of the guys on their team have a lot of pace and they didn’t really take their time to build up, they just went for it as soon as they got the ball."
(On playing against Gareth Bale…)
STEPHENS: “I thought that he was impressive and probably the most impressive player on their team. When he got the ball, he was pretty dangerous.”
CARSON, Calif. -- After a shaky start to his time as a member of the LA Galaxy, David Junior Lopes has begun to find his form in an LA uniform.
Lopes has started the last nine league games for the Galaxy and was in the starting XI on Tuesday for LA's 1-1 draw with Tottenham. To cap off his run of form, Lopes added his first goal in a Galaxy uniform against Spurs netting with a cool finish off a Marcelo Sarvas cross.
Lopes' quotes are below...
(On his first goal with the Galaxy...)
LOPES: "I’m very happy for the team and myself. I’d be a lot happier if it had been in league. Still, against a big club from a big league, overall I’m very happy."
(On his comfort level with the Galaxy...)
LOPES: "Today, I feel very good. Every day I talk to my coaches, I talk to my teammates, things are getting better, and right now they’re really good."
(On if he feels like he belongs on the team...)
LOPES: “The Galaxy, definitely, is my life now. Every day I get to learn more about the club and the club gets to learn more about me. Progressively doing more within the club, that’s probably the best thing."
In an interview with the Associated Press, LA Galaxy midfielder David Beckham claims that he will play a role in Friday’s opening ceremonies to the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Beckham was not selected for Stuart Pearce’s Great Britain’s soccer team at the Games, but told the AP on Tuesday that he will play an unspecified role in the ceremony.
"It is some kind of role in the opening ceremony which I am honored to be involved in because obviously I was involved in the start process with this seven years ago," Beckham told The Associated Press. "And for Seb (chair of the London Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games Sebastian Coe) to have kept me involved, I'm very proud of that."
In the interview, Beckham also specified that he’ll be traveling back and forth between the U.S. and London to fulfill his duties with the Galaxy. Beckham is expected to travel back sometime today so that he can appear in Wednesday’s MLS All-Star game against Chelsea at PPL Park in Chester, PA.
"I'll be going back and forward but I'll definitely be trying to get to a few events," he said.
However, no decision has been made on his status for Saturday’s match against FC Dallas according to head coach Bruce Arena, who said after training on Monday that Beckham will miss “very few” matches to fulfill his Olympic responsibilities.
CARSON, Calif. -- In the span of a week, Jose Villarreal's life has changed significantly.
Villarreal scored his first professional goal last Wednesday, helping the Galaxy salvage a point in a 2-2 draw against the Vancouver Whitecaps. The goal itself was world class -- which is nominated for MLS goal of the week -- and has helped the youngster draw significant media attention since. On Monday, LA-based reporters caught up with Villarreal ahead of Tuesday's clash against Tottenham Hotspur, a match that the 18-year-old midfielder is expected to play a significant role in.
Villarreal's quotes are below...
(On the reception since his goal…)
VILLARREAL: “It was blowing up, my phone was vibrating in the locker room and I was trying to find a way to shut it off. It was good though; all my teammates just hit me in the head and threw socks at me. It was fun.”
(On his goal…)
VILLARREAL: “There are a couple of guys that can do that, but I’ve just been watching Robbie and obviously you pick up some stuff from them. I’m happy that I picked that up.”
(On playing Tottenham...)
VILLARREAL: “If the chance is there then I’ll take advantage of it, but I’m looking forward to having a good time and enjoying it. Playing against Van der V aart, Bale all those players, they’re great players and it’ll be a great time.”
(On what player he'd most like to face on Tottenham...)
VILLARREAL: “Van der Vaart.”
(On his mentality against Vancouver…)
VILLARREAL: “Before I came in, I was telling myself that I couldn’t be nervous because if I was then I was going to play nervous and that wasn’t going to help the team so just be mentally focused and do what you do.”
(On learning from Keane and Donovan…)
VILLARREAL: “When we’re doing finishing or small sided goals, I ask them what type of movements or how to finish and stuff like that. They obviously tell me and even if I don’t ask then they tell me.”
(On the one thing that training with them has taught him…)
VILLARREAL: “Just speed of thought. When you get the ball, you need to know what you’re going to do before you even get it. Just getting into good spots before you even touch the ball then you’re eventually going to get the ball and do what you do.”
(On the praise since his goal…)
VILLARREAL: “It feels good and I’m very happy. All of a sudden, I have a lot of friends now; I don’t know where that came from. I’m very happy and I appreciate the coaches and family for their support and everyone here from the staff everyone…they all supported me before my injury and now that I’m good, I’m just going to keep going from here.
CARSON, Calif. – Forward Chad Barrett was back at LA Galaxy training on Monday morning, but no decision either way about a potential move to Norway’s Vålerenga.
Barrett, who is currently out of contract at the end of the year, returned from Norway last Saturday after a week-long trial with the Oslo-based club and was in attendance during the Galaxy’s 3-1 victory over Chivas USA.
Following training on Monday, the 27-year-old forward did not speak with the media, but head coach Bruce Arena addressed Barrett’s status.
“Chad Barrett is back from an opportunity in Norway and we’re waiting for the club response this week,” the Galaxy coach told reporters.
Arena also left the door open that Barrett could feature in Tuesday’s friendly against Tottenham Hotspur, a team that the forward supported as a teenager.
“It’s a possibility,” said Arena. “Nothing is definite at this point.”
Following Tottenham Hotspur’s open training session at the Home Depot Center on Sunday, assembled media got a chance to speak with the Rafael van der Vaart about the upcoming friendly against the LA Galaxy.
Van der Vaart’s thoughts below…
(On new head coach André Villas-Boas…)
VAN DER VAART: “There’s a new coach, I think that [former head coach] Harry [Redknapp] did a great job, but the club decided something else. He’s a young manger and a great manager and he wants to prove something after his few months with Chelsea. We want to win something and I think that we have a great squad and that’s why it’s so important to have a good preseason in LA. “
(On AVB’s approach benefiting his game…)
VAN DER VAART: “It’s always difficult to say and I don’t like to say what is better and what is not. Every manager has his own style and I think that Harry did a fantastic job. [Villas-boas] is an honest man and I think that the team will have to work hard and I think it’s a little bit different when you’re manager of a national team as opposed to a club, but he can do it. He’s a great man.”
(On facing Donovan, Beckham and Keane…)
VAN DER VAART: “They’re great men. I’ve played with Keano of course and he’s a great lad. It’s good that those kind of players play [in MLS] because soccer can become bigger and bigger in America so it’s a good sign.”
The Galaxy face Tottenham Hotspur on Tuesday, July 24 at The Home Depot Center. Tickets for that match are still available, starting at $40, at www.lagalaxy.com/tottenham