Beat

24 July 1:20 am

PASADENA, Calif. -- Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal opened up his tenure at the helm of United with a convincing 7-0 victory over the LA Galaxy. 

Below is his postgame press conference after United's Chevrolet Cup win.

On Javier Hernandez not playing in the match:

“He arrived yesterday evening so he didn’t train. If you are not training, you will never be in the lineup. He was on holiday after the World Cup. Everybody at Manchester United has had three weeks but he was in the round of 16 against us [Holland]. You have to count 21 days and then he will join the team. I gave him permission to come directly from Mexico. He has to train, then he can play. He has to train for a week, then he can participate. He can play 45 minutes like the other players because the other players only trained three days.”

On starting off his career with Manchester United with a win:

“I think the result always matters because with such a result you gain confidence in the new system because we introduced a new system in the training sessions. We have played 11 v. 11 twice with the new system, which may not be that much, but the boys are willing to pick up all the information we have given them. They performed fantastic today.”

On the team’s performance:

“Last week I wasn’t at Manchester United and 10 players who played tonight were not at the training complex. When you see us train, you can expect something but not 7-0, that was also a surprise to me. They were all not just beautiful football goals but they were out of beautiful attacks.”

On the new system he is bringing to Manchester United:

“When you want to change a system you have to start at once because we don’t have time to prepare other things. The other system Man United can play is 4-3-3; they have played this system for many years. I can change this system when it doesn’t work. With the quality of the players I have I think we can play better with this system because we have four strikers. For example, when we play 4-3-3, then I have three strikers on the bench and I think that is not good.  That is why I want to play with two strikers.  Also, we have four number tens, so the selection is not balanced in my eyes. Because of that, I have decided to play in this system. Only because of the quality of the players, but when that doesn’t work I’ll change it to a 4-3-3.”   

 

24 July 12:31 am

PASADENA, Calif. – After his club’s impressive 7-0 Chevrolet Cup victory over the LA Galaxy, Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal refused to discuss the performance of new signing Ander Herrera, but he was at the tip of the tongue of LA’s players following the match.

The 24-year-old Spaniard was one of only two United players to play the full 90 minutes in the seven goal thrashing and provided two assists as he pulled the strings for the Red Devils throughout.  Herrera, who was signed in the offseason from Atletico Bilbao, overwhelmed the Galaxy and assisted twice on United’s final two tallies by Ashley Young late in the second half.

“I thought he was fantastic,” said Galaxy captain Robbie Keane. “I thought he was the best player on the pitch by far.”

Added midfielder Stefan Ishizaki, "“I saw him play in Athletic Bilbao the last couple of years, and I thought he was a really good player. It’s a good signing for Manchester and he is dominating.”

LA head coach Bruce Arena was even more complimentary of the Spaniard who figures to play a major role in United's English Premier League campaign once it starts next month.

“Technically good…he and [Juan] Mata and [Darren] Fletcher I thought were very good in the middle of the field,” said Arena. “I think in the first half that was a big part of them owning the game in the middle third of the field they were terrific, not only with their passing, but winning some tackles, and picking up some second balls I was very impressed with that. I hadn’t seen much of that player but he’s a good player.”

24 July 12:00 am

PASADENA, Calif. -- The result wasn't what the LA Galaxy wanted by any stretch of the imagination, but the crowd of 86,432 was reason to smile.

The Galaxy's crowd of nearly 90,000 for their 7-0 Chevrolet Cup defeat to English powerhouse Manchester United was the sixth largest crowd in U.S. club soccer history. Although his team fell in a disappointing loss, Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena was amazed by the crowd.

“I think that the crowd was great. I have nothing but the greatest respect for the show that Man U put on," said Arena. "A bunch of guys out there fighting for jobs and it looked that way. First half I don’t think was a 3-0 game but being as professional as they are and the quality that they had they punished us on every mistake. So it’s a good lesson for all players…certainly the second half was a bit of the same.

However, Galaxy captain Robbie Keane took a different view stating that it was embarrassing to lose so convincingly in front of such a large crowd.

"Losing 7-0…no chance," said Keane when he asked if it was fun to play in front of a large crowd. "I felt like it [would be better] if it was only five people left to see that instead of [80,000-plus], but we have to move on, simple as that." 

But United midfielder Juan Mata was impressed by the crowd that supported United in droves. 

"It was unbelievable. It was crazy," said Mata. "We are so grateful." 

23 July 11:32 pm

PASADENA, Calif. -- LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena addressed the media following his team's 7-0 defeat to Manchester United in the Chevrolet Cup at the Rose Bowl.

(On Crowd…)

ARENA: “I think that the crowd was great. I have nothing but the greatest respect for the show that Man U put on. A bunch of guys out there fighting for jobs and it looked that way. First half I don’t think was a 3-0 game but being as professional as they are and the quality that they had they punished us on every mistake. So it’s a good lesson for all players…certainly the second half was a bit of the same.”

(On what they got out of tonight’s game…)

ARENA: “I think a real lesson for a lot of our players. You talk a lot about some of the things that happened tonight that they very rarely see and tonight being on the field and getting punished for mistakes and really getting a lesson on speed of play. It was there, it was all out there for them. I think we can actually use this as a positive, obviously there was a lot I wasn’t pleased with but I think really a good lesson. We’ve done this for a number of years against quality clubs, and have always been able to hang in a lot better than we did tonight, so I think it’s a good lesson for our team.”

(On Man United’s game…)

ARENA: “This time last year we beat Juventus, and we weren’t proclaiming that we were better than any team in Italy. This game tonight is not going to give an indication where they’re going to stand in the premiership. Their style is obviously different. They’re playing a style that their manager’s very comfortable and familiar with in his career. They’re playing a back 3 and some version of a 3-5-2 or a 3-4-3, and that’s a big change for a Manchester United club that’s traditionally played 4-4-2 or 4-3-3 at times, so it’s a different style but it looks tactically a lot like what we saw out of the Dutch team in the World Cup. That’s his style of play and I’m sure he’s going to get some new players and be even a little more dangerous going forward, and get the players that fit those tactics in the right way. They’re certainly going to be a good team this year; it’s going to be a great campaign in the premiership. There are some outstanding teams and they’re going to be fighting from the first week on and it’ll be interesting but I think that’s a quality team.”

(On Omar not playing…)

ARENA: “Not ready to play yet. He’s still coming back from an injury. Anything could happen on Monday.”

(On value of game to young Galaxy players…)

ARENA:  “If they aspire to be top flight professionals they see some of the top fligh professionals and the way they conduct themselves on the field and speed of play. Our young players and a number of our players still are not quality passers. And one thing you saw tonight, the passing by Manchester United was quick and crisp; it was of quality. We have too many players who are technically deficient right now, and it’s something they should learn. It’s also speed of thought. Quickness in moving, winning tackles, running off the ball…all the simple things we frequently talk about but unless you see it live and in real life it’s sometimes hard to have a picture of it, and they got a great picture of it tonight.”

(On Ander Herrera…)

ARENA: “Technically good…he and Mata and Fletcher I thought were very good in the middle of the field. I think in the first half that was a big part of them owning the game in the middle third of the field they were terrific, not only with their passing, but winning some tackles, and picking up some second balls I was very impressed with that. I hadn’t seen much of that player but he’s a good player.

23 July 10:12 am

Mexican national team star and Manchester United forward Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez landed in Los Angeles last night, but whether he plays in Wednesday's Chevrolet Cup between United and the LA Galaxy is still up in the air.  

United manager Louis van Gaal entertained several questions about unsettled striker who is currently rumored to be close to a move away from the club. While speculation has been high about Hernandez's next move, van Gaal was quick to note that Hernandez will be given an opportunity to impress the new boss this preseason. 

“I have to see if he performs how I want, and now, I can only see what he has shown under the guidance of another trainer and coach,” van Gaal said on Tuesday during a press conference that was delayed nearly 45 minutes after United found themselves stuck in rush hour traffic. “He will arrive and then I will meet him, we will train, and after that, he will perform in a match and only after that, I can say anything about it.”

Although van Gaal's words bode well for Chicharito's short term future with the club, his insistence on having him train before playing in a match may see him play limited -- if any -- minutes during Wednesday's match at the Rose Bowl Stadium against the Galaxy.

-- Do you think that Chicharito will play? Are you excited to see him play in Pasadena?

Share your thoughts below.

22 July 8:27 pm

PASADENA, Calif. – Manchester United have been in Los Angeles for less than a week, but on Tuesday they received a true Southern California experience—getting stuck in rush hour traffic.

United were 45 minutes for their open training session at the Rose Bowl Stadium as their team bus found itself stuck in L.A. traffic driving from their base hotel in Beverly Hills in Pasadena.  Despite the inconvenience, United manager Louis van Gaal was chipper upon his team’s arrival at the stadium’s press room.

“Of course, we were late. It was the first time that I was late for a press conference, but Los Angeles traffic,” van Gaal told reporters.  

On Wednesday, the Dutchman and his side will face a stiffer test when they take on the Galaxy in the Chevrolet Cup at the world-famous Pasadena venue. Although Europeans are traditionally criticized for their blasé attitude toward friendlies with MLS sides, van Gaal insists that he’s done his homework on the Galaxy.

“We have analyzed the Galaxy and I expect a very organized and technical team that is aggressive in attack,” said van Gaal. “They are already in the rhythm of the season and we started just three days ago. We are not well prepared, we are not fit yet, but I hope that we can give a good performance and it’s a process.

“The preparation time is a process, so I hope that we can make every [preseason] match a step in that progress, but I'm also anxious to see how we do it tomorrow against the Galaxy.” 

22 July 4:11 pm

Two LA Galaxy goalkeepers Eric Lopez and Abraham Romero will be on international duty for the United States and Mexico next month as they are set to participate in a pair of upcoming youth international tournaments.

Lopez, who has been part of the U.S. U-17 residency program for the past semester, was among the 18 players who will participate in the Open Nordic Tournament in Denmark. The U.S. will face Denmark on July 28 before taking on Norway on July 29, the Faroe Islands on July 31, and playing in a placement match two days later.  

Meanwhile Romero earned the call for Mexico for the Copa Mexico de Naciones, a setup which he has been a part of off and on for the past two years.  The Galaxy goalkeeper has also represented the U.S. U-17’s as well as Mexico. The Mexican squad will play Ecuador on Aug. 2, Honduras on Aug. 3, and Scotland on Aug. 4. Mexico will also play three additional games on Aug. 6, Aug. 8 and a placement match on Aug. 10.

Named to the U.S. squad for the Copa Mexico de Naciones was Galaxy Academy product Haji Wright, who was listed as unattached to an academy in a U.S. Soccer press release. Wright trained earlier this year with the Galaxy first team, but has also been linked with a move to Germany where giants Schalke are a rumored suitor. 

22 July 12:29 pm

CARSON, Calif. – LA Galaxy Under-18 forward Adonis Amaya was named U.S. Soccer Development Academy’s West Player of the Year and the Galaxy Academy earned a host of other honors in the USSDA’s end of season awards last Saturday.  

Amaya earned the Player of the Year nod after scoring 25 goals for the Galaxy U-18 side while helping them finish at the top of the Southwest Division. The Galaxy Academy striker is committed to U.C. Santa Barbara where he will play his college soccer this fall.

The Galaxy Academy also took home the honor of the best overall club in the West after a successful season that saw the team’s U-14 side excel in their first campaign, the U-16’s win the Developmental Academy title and the U-18’s win the Southwest Division.

In addition to the overall honors, the champion Galaxy U-16’s had two players (defender Malcolm Jones and midfielder Rey Ortiz) named to the West Best XI. On the U-18 side Amaya was joined on the West Best XI by forward Jamie Villarreal. 

22 July 10:17 am

CARSON, Calif. – The LA Galaxy will look to test themselves against one of the world’s largest clubs on Wednesday when they take on English powerhouse Manchester United at the Rose Bowl Stadium (7:30 p.m. PT, Fox Sports 1).

LA has a lengthy history of international matches having played a total of 90 exhibitions in their history while carrying a 40-25-29 record. LA’s greatest high profile win in such a friendly came just a year ago when the Galaxy defeated Italian giants Juventus in an exhibition at Dodger Stadium.

Such friendlies have become part and parcel of MLS since its inception and although they've become a yearly staple, they still provide plenty of excitement for LA's squad. 

“It's a friendly game, so preparation for them for their upcoming season. For us we're in the mix of a season halfway through,” said Galaxy captain Robbie Keane. “I think it will be a good test for the younger players, good experience to play against top players. I know they're looking forward to it. And of course I am [looking forward to] seeing players I've played against for a long time. I'm looking forward to it.”

Added Omar Gonzalez, "A Lot of these fans here [in Southern California] don't have the money or the time to go all the way to England watch United live. For United do to this tour and come play here it's great for the fans and great for the continued growth of football.

"We want to give the fans a great game."

21 July 4:53 pm

CARSON, Calif. – Don’t count on LA Galaxy center back Omar Gonzalez making a move in the summer transfer window. At least that was the message from the defender on Monday ahead of Wednesday’s match against Manchester United.

The defender will be looking to make his return on Wednesday from a right ankle injury that he suffered during his participation with the U.S. National Team at the 2014 FIFA World Cup.  While other USMNT players have dealt with post-World Cup transfer speculation, there has been little chatter surrounding Gonzalez and on Monday, the defender said that while Europe is a dream of his, he’s committed to LA.

“I still want to ply my trade in Europe, but right now I’m committed to the Galaxy,” said Gonzalez who signed a new Designated Player contract a year ago. “That’s something that my agent handles, but right now I’m looking to get back to full fitness and I’m looking to get a result against United and go to Seattle and have a tough game.”

Although the Galaxy currently boast three Designated Players, the  unsettled club situation of Manchester United forward Javier Hernandez has led to some speculation that he may be bound for a move to MLS. However, Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena refused to entertain any speculation about a move for the El Tri star.

“You don’t talk about other players that are under contract with other clubs,” said Arena. “We don’t talk about that stuff publicly.”