CARSON, Calif. -- LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena spoke to the media after the club's 2-0 victory over the Chicago Fire in the opening match of the 2015 regular season.
Arena's comments are below.
(On starting Jose Villarreal…)
“Obviously he played well, and obviously got the winning goal for a really big game. He is a good player; he dedicates himself to being a good professional. He’s got the talent to be a real good player, so I’m really pleased with his game today. … Last year for a while, we loaned him to Cruz Azul and it didn’t work out. He came back, but 2014 was really a little bit of a wasted year for him. We started to get him going a little bit with Galaxy II, but he’s is a player with a lot of talent, maybe his best position would be a second forward. Perhaps where Robbie Keane plays, but he’s not going to get on the field because of that. We have a lot of forwards, and we asked him to make this transition to midfield, and it’s a bit challenging, but he has worked real hard to get fit. I thought tonight he showed that, and he did in his last couple of preseason games. So we’re pretty excited about his development.”
(On relying on Stefan Ishizaki with the absence of Donovan…)
“I don’t even give any of that a thought. We’re building a team for this year, and it has nothing to do with Landon not being here. It has to do with the players that are here and getting better and making our team better. Landon is obviously respected, and we appreciate everything he has done, but that is over. Ishizaki is in his second year in this league, he is much more comfortable. He is a very good player, and we expect him to have a really good year this year, as he did last year.”
(On defensive line…)
ARENA: “It’s a pretty experienced group. All of our players, beside the group the group that started tonight, you saw A.J. coming on, we have Tommy Meyer, and Todd Dunivant, we have good experienced players that can play multiple positions in the back line and they have played together for a while. So they are pretty consistent and obviously talented. Omar is a tremendous talent, Leonardo is probably a little bit of an unsung hero, he’s played very well for us, he is going to have an outstanding season.”
(On why Rowe started over Penedo…)
ARENA: “Jaime has had some knocks in preseason and he hasn’t played that much. We felt that Brian was a little ahead of Jaime at this point.”
(On UniMas reporting that Penedo sat out the game due to contract negotiations…)
ARENA: “He is healthy…That wasn’t my decision. Our decision was made because we felt that Brian was the right guy for this game.”
(On the league starting on time…)
ARENA: “It was great. I think the league had to go on, and start on schedule this year. I don’t think we could have received the type of support we need if there we had a strike and the season was delayed. I think it’s important that we got the season started on time, and obviously we are real happy to be able to play.”
(On the experienced nature of the team…)
ARENA: “It’s the same thing for the most part, they’re an experienced group, & they know how to play and at home we obviously played well. But it’s an experienced group of players on the field and they’ve tasted a lot of success and they understand what they need to do to win games. We’ve been through it before, and I thought the first half we played well, especially the last 15 minutes of the half. So I think it’s just a matter of time to get a goal, and I think Chicago started off the second half much better. They put us under some pressure, so obviously Jose’s goal was big. We thought that we put them in a position where they tire out a little bit because they had to do a lot of defending in the first half. Our guys kept their concentration and had the kind of discipline they needed to have. When they got the first goal, I thought they felt pretty comfortable that they would be able to get a second one, and get three points.”
(On if the team’s sharpness ‘waxed and waned’…)
ARENA: “Wax and wane? I don’t know if it did that. Wax and wane? We weren’t as sharp as we needed to be. It was the first game of the season. The players don’t fully have their legs yet, but if we were a little bit sharper in the first half then we’d get a goal, no question.”
Andre Auras scores a brace as the LA Galaxy defeat Cal-State Fullerton 6-1 in closed-door preseason scrimmage
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy won their second preseason match of 2015 with a 6-1 result over Cal-State Fullerton in a closed-door scrimmage on their training field otuside StubHub Center.
Andre Auras notch a brace in the match with two second half goals while Robbie Keane, Charlie Rugg, Rafael Garcia, and Raul Mendiola each added a goal of their own. The Galaxy also conceded in the second half after Brian Rowe made a stop in the second half, but had a rebound trickle out for a Fullerton goal from close range. LA used a total of 22 players in the match and saw their preseason record move to 2-0-0.
"Our fitness is getting a little bit better, we're getting a little bit better with our ball movement, but we still have a way to go. We're still just basically a week into preseason," Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena told reporters after the match. "I thought the Cal-State Fullerton team played really hard and were a good test for us. They didn't make it easy on us which was good. We had an advantage."
Landon Donovan says he can't think of a better player to join the LA Galaxy than Liverpool's Steven Gerrard
PHILADELPHIA – Count retired LA Galaxy legend Landon Donovan among those who were impressed by the club’s ability to acquire Liverpool FC and former England captain Steven Gerrard to replace him as the team’s third Designated Player.
In an interview with LA Galaxy Insider after the announcement that Major League Soccer will be naming their Most Valuable Player award, the “Landon Donovan MVP trophy,” Donovan said that he was immensely pleased when he heard LA had signed the 34-year-old English soccer star.
“I was incredibly impressed with the [Galaxy’s] ability to bring in a player like Steven Gerrard and that, he’s the quality of player that they wanted,” Donovan said. “When I played at Everton [Liverpool’s arch rival], Everton fans hate Liverpool players and Liverpool fans, but Steven Gerrard was the one player that everyone respected on both sides. Everyone in the Premier League has so much respect for him and I can’t think of a better person to come here and hopefully lead the team to a sixth trophy next year.”
Bruce Arena tells ESPN FC that Marcelo Sarvas trade provides LA Galaxy with "flexibility" to build 2015 roster
PHILADELPHIA -- The LA Galaxy dealt one of chief contributors to their 2014 MLS Cup title run on Thursday by trading Marcelo Sarvas to the Colorado Rapids, but the club now appears primed to replace the departing Brazilian with another top tier talent.
LA dealt Sarvas and an international roster spot to the Rapids on Thursday in a move that saw the Galaxy move up to the third spot on the league's allocation order. Reports have swirled that move will allow the Galaxy to acquire U.S. international Sacha Kljestan, a player who has long been on the club's radar. According to ESPN FC's Jeff Carlisle, the deal should allow the Galaxy the freedom to acquire Kljestan or any other returning U.S. international as neither the two teams ahead of them in the ranking, the Montreal Impact and San Jose Earthquakes are expected to impede LA's plans.
In addition to Arena speaking out about the Brazilian midfielder's departure, Sarvas' partner in central midfield Juninho also addressed his departure via his personal instagram.
"Marcelo, I want to wish you the best of luck in the next step of your life. Thank you for teaching me a lot of things about soccer, especially never giving up no matter the situation. You are a very good player and an example of dedication and companionship," Juninho said. "We were a good duo. It was a pleasure to play and live by your side and to know you in and off the field. Good luck to you in your next new club. LA, my family and I gonna miss you, Champion.'
Marcelo I want to wish you the best of luck in the next step of your life. Thank you for teaching me a lot of things about soccer, especially never giving up no matter the situation. You are a very good player and an example of dedication and companionship. We were a good duo. It was a pleasure to play and live by your side and to know you in and off the field. Good luck to you in your next new club. LA, my family and I gonna miss you Champion / Marcelo Eu quero te desejar muita sorte neste próximo passo da tua vida. Obrigado por me ensinar muitas coisas sobre o futebol , especialmente de nunca me der por vencido não importa a situação. Você é jogador diferenciado um exemplo de dedicação e companheirismo. Fomos uma excelente dupla juntos. Foi um prazer jogar e viver ao teu lado e de conhecer você dentro e fora de campo. Boa sorte no teu novo clube. LA , minha família e eu vamos sentir saudades de você Campeão. @marcelosarvas
LA Galaxy forward Bradford Jamieson IV named to U.S. U-20 roster for 2015 CONCACAF U-20 Championship
LA Galaxy Homegrown Player Bradford Jamieson IV has been named to the U.S. U-20 head coach Tab Ramos' 20-man roster for the 2015 U-20 CONCACAF Championship in Jamaica.
After being drawn into Group A, U.S. will open the tournament on Jan. 9 against Guatemala before facing Panama on Jan. 11, Aruba on Jan. 14, the host nation Jamaica on Jan. 18, and finally Trinidad and Tobago on Jan. 21. Only four countries will qualify from the tournament for the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup in New Zealand.
Jamieson joins the team after playing a major role for USL PRO side LA Galaxy II and making his professional debut for the Galaxy in July 2014. The 18-year-old is among six players who will represent MLS clubs and is the second with an LA Galaxy link, joining former Galaxy Academy product Paul Arriola who is currently with Liga MX side Club Tijuana.
The complete roster is below.
LA Galaxy stalwarts A.J. DeLaGarza and Juninho expecting to be ready for MLS Cup Final date with New England Revolution
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy are expecting to be back to full fitness -- or at least close to it, when they kick off in the MLS Cup Final against the New England Revolution on Sunday.
A.J. DeLaGarza (left hamstring strain) was the most glaring absence from the squad that dispatched Seattle Sounders FC on Sunday, but in an interview with reporters the morning after, the 27-year-old said that he expects to play in MLS Cup this weekend.
"I feel a lot better. I've been working out the last couple of days, but I didn't train too much in the buildup to the last game against Seattle so it wasn't right to go out in a situation like that especially on that turf. You saw that Osvaldo Alonso was not himself and he had two weeks to get ready for that," said DeLaGarza. "I'll be fine this weekend. I'm going to get back into full training."
Another question mark is Juninho who played the hero for the Galaxy with the series-clinching goal against the Sounders. It appeared that the Brazilian suffered an injury in the 87th minute that forced Bruce Arena to pull him from the match when a subsitution of another banged up player (Marcelo Sarvas) was already in the cards.
Despite needing to be helped off the field, Juninho insisted after the game that he'll be ready for Sunday's meeting with the New England Revolution.
"It was so cold out there and at the end of the game there is a lot of pressure so I felt a cramp," said Juninho. " I'm good though. I'll be good for the next game."
A.J. DeLaGarza's Guam defeats Chinese Taipei in 2015 EAFF East Asian Cup preliminary round semifinal
LA Galaxy center back A.J. DeLaGarza started and went 90 minutes as Guam defeated host nation Chinese Taipei (Taiwan) 2-1 in their 2015 EAFF East Asian Cup preliminary round two match.
A penalty kick goal by former Santa Clara soccer star Jason Cunliffe in the 14th minute gave Matao an early advantage that was doubled just three minutes before half time when Shane Malcolm scored. Chen Hao-wei scored for Chinese Taipei in the 57th minute, but the DeLaGarza-led Guam defense held firm to prevent a comeback.
Guam will take on group stage favorite North Korea on Sunday in a match that will likely decide which team advances to the 2015 EAFF East Asian Cup. North Korea started the qualifying group off on a high note on Thursday with a 2-1 victory over Hong Kong.
Ahead of his final regular season match at the StubHub Center, Landon Donovan sits down with ESPN's Kenny Mayne to discuss his plans after he retires at the end of the LA Galaxy's 2014 campaign.
In addition to discussing his plans to put on weight after his career ends, Donovan tells Mayne about his favorite moment at StubHub Center and his reasoning on why he deserved to be on the U.S. squad during the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
Check it out above.
MONTREAL -- In the latest edition of LAGalaxy.com's "What to Watch For," Cobi Jones and Joe Tutino preview the match against the Montreal Impact.
Check it out below.
Colorado Rapids Goalkeeper Joe Nasco earns fastest red card in MLS history in 6-0 loss to the LA Galaxy
CARSON, Calif. -- It's safe to say that Colorado Rapids goalkeeper Joe Nasco had one of the worst nights of his career, and he did it all without playing a single minute.
Just 34 seconds into the game, Alan Gordon skirted past Nasco during a scramble in front of goal, but before he could get a shot off at an empty net, Nasco yanked down the forward. Despite the extremely early juncture of the game, referee Baldomero Toledo pointed to the spot and handed out a red card for Nasco which was the quickest red card in league history.
Gyasi [Zardes] and [Alan] Gordon made great runs across the box and Todd [Dunivant] put in a great cross in front of the goal and when you do that, good things happen," said Landon Donovan. "Gordon did a good job to get his feet on it and was going to score and got pulled down, so that’s part of the game and it’s unfortunate for them."
Prior to Nasco's foible, the previous holder of the dubious distinction was former New York Red Bulls defender Carlos Johnson, who was sent off in the second minute of a match with the then-Kansas City Wizards back on April 23, 2009.
Although Nasco will likely have to carry the distinction for some time, he got little sympathy from the home side.
"If the goalkeeper doesn’t do that, then they don’t get the red card," said defender Omar Gonzalez. "That’s the way the game is played, those are the rules. It’s tough that’s the way it went down, but that had to happen."