Omar Gonzalez among three LA Galaxy players on yellow card watch heading into Seattle Sounders FC match
CARSON, Calif. – The LA Galaxy are heading into their Western Conference Championship series with Seattle Sounders FC with a boatload of confidence after the way that they dispatched Real Salt Lake, but three players will need to be cautious heading into the first leg.
Landon Donovan, Robbie Rogers, and Omar Gonzalez are both on yellow card watch heading into Sunday’s first leg. Should either of the three earn a caution from referee Kevin Stott, they will miss out on next week’s second leg at CenturyLink Field. It bears mentioning, however, that no player can be suspended for MLS Cup based on yellow card accumulation.
While Donovan and Rogers are at risk, Gonzalez faces a particular challenge as he looks to avoid a yellow card and mark dynamic strikers Obafemi Martins and Clint Dempsey.
“I have to be very smart with how I defend and how aggressive I am,” said Gonzalez. “But having said that, I have to leave it all on the field and not worry about the referees or about anything out of my control. I have to worry about how I show up, how I approach the game and how focused I am over 90 minutes."
LA Galaxy defender Robbie Rogers made American sports history a year ago when he became the first athlete in a major professional sport to come out as a gay man.
The announcement led to considerable scrutiny and media pressure in his difficult first season with the club, but now a year later, things have changed consdierably. Rogers has solidified himself as one of the top left backs in MLS and on Thursday, he was rewarded with a new multi-year contract extension by the Galaxy.
As his professional life has come together, Rogers' has personal life has flourished as well as the 27-year-old will be releasing his biography "Coming Out to Play." on Nov. 25. On Thursday, Rogers celebrated the book's release with a private event in West Hollywood.
"It was an amazing event and I'm so happy to see the support from everyone," Rogers said.
Photos of the event are below.
CARSON, Calif. -- Robbie Rogers is staying with the LA Galaxy for the long run.
The Galaxy announced on Thursday that the team has signed Rogers to a new multi-year contract extension. Per club and league rules, the details of the contact were not released. After a frustrating 2013 season with the Galaxy, Rogers has found new life in 2014 as a left back, making 19 appearances and 15 starts for LA.
LA Galaxy issue warning to FC Dallas/Seattle Sounders FC series winner ahead of Western Conference Finals
CARSON, Calif. – The LA Galaxy advanced to the Western Conference Finals for the fifth time in six years on Sunday with their 5-0 victory over Real Salt Lake, but their opponent in that series remains a mystery.
LA will play the winner of the FC Dallas/Seattle Sounders FC series which will be decided on Monday at CenturyLink Field. Seattle need only a victory or a scoreless draw to advance while FC Dallas must defeat the Supporters’ Shield winners or earn a high scoring draw.
Both teams gave the Galaxy all they could handle in the regular season with LA winning the season series with Dallas 2-1-0 while splitting their three matches with Seattle 1-1-1. Given those records, is there a preference for the Galaxy as they seek to qualify for a third MLS Cup in four seasons?
Not at all.
“Between Seattle and Dallas, they gave us a lot of problems during the season so we’ll watch the game very closely tomorrow,” said hat trick hero Landon Donovan. “We’ll be sure to get proper rest this week and we’ll be ready to go.”
Even though the Galaxy had struggled results wise with a four game winless streak prior to their explosion on Sunday, LA believe their clicking at the right time as they look to their next opponent.
“I know that we haven’t had good results, but even against Seattle we had moments that were very good. We did break down at the end, but they sat back and defended against us in Seattle, which is weird,” said Robbie Rogers. “We’re confident in whomever we play be it Seattle or Dallas that we can compete.
“I think that anyone has to come into a stadium where the last team lost 5-0, they know it’s going to be difficult, but it is the playoffs so anyone can win.”
But Stefan Ishizaki, who shined in his start against Salt Lake, offered the tersest message to LA’s future opponents.
CARSON, Calif. – A year ago this week, the LA Galaxy saw their “Quest for Three” consecutive MLS Cups fall short against Real Salt Lake at Rio Tinto Stadium. This Sunday, it will be Salt Lake traveling to StubHub Center with the chance to eliminate the Galaxy from the postseason and prevent them from being the “First to Five” MLS Cup titles.
Salt Lake simply need a draw in which goals are scored or a victory to end LA’s postseason dreams while the Galaxy need a win or a penalty kick shootout victory to advance.
A year ago, it was the Galaxy who needed a win or a draw in which goals were scored to go through after winning the first leg at StubHub Center 1-0 on a Sean Franklin screamer from distance. However, in the windy Utah conditions, the Galaxy found themselves overmatched as the Claret-and-Cobalt found goals from Sebastian Velasquez and Chris Schuler to defeat LA after 120 minutes.
Although the Galaxy find themselves in a similar situation against Salt Lake, Robbie Keane believes LA are stronger than the team that crashed out of the playoffs a year ago.
“We’re certainly in better position than last year in terms of the players that we have this year,” said Keane. “We have more experienced players and the players that we had last year are a year old and a year better. In terms of that, we’re good with the experience that we have.”
Added Robbie Rogers, “It does feel different. We went on the road last year and I think that there is a little more excitement when you’re in front of your home fans and while we were all up for it in Salt Lake, we know our record at home and what type of attractive soccer that we can play here. We just want to take them out of their comfort zone and show we can perform at home.”
While Keane and Rogers admitted that the team feels different than the one that failed to advance, Marcelo Sarvas disagreed, but noted that LA’s experience could tip the balance on Sunday.
“Every year is different and you can’t compare teams because they have different players who are in different moments,” said Sarvas. “But we have been through this before. We know how it is to play against Salt Lake…Now we’re at our home and we’re going to go for goals and go to win the game.”
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy defense has been riddled with injuries as of late, but according to head coach Bruce Arena, LA may welcome back one -- or possibly two -- member of their walking wounded back to the lineup during Sunday's game against FC Dallas.
Right back Dan Gargan missed out on Saturday's game due to a left ankle sprain while Robbie Rogers suffered a left hamstring injury that forced him from the early stages of the victory over Toronto. Both players took part in portions of the Galaxy's training session on Tuesday and according to Arena, both are working their way back onto the field.
"They're doing fine. Their issues are very much short term," said Arena who said that he anticipated that one of them to be ready on Sunday. "We'll have to go into the week and see. It's only Tuesday right now."
LA Galaxy defenders Robbie Rogers and Omar Gonzalez were named to MLSsoccer.com's Team of the Week on Monday for their performance in the club's 2-1 victory over FC Dallas.
Rogers enjoyed a stellar evening along the left side -- and even garnered some U.S. National Team buzz from captain Robbie Keane -- while Gonzalez helped shutdown the FCD attack. Meanwhile, Robbie Keane was placed on the Team of the Week bench for his goal and assist against Dallas.
The complete team is below.
CARSON, Calif. –The LA Galaxy will be without defender Todd Dunivant for at least the next month.
The Galaxy's 33-year-old left back told reporters at training on Sunday that the he will be out for around six weeks with a left groin tear. Dunivant needed to be stretchered off the field in the 26th minute after suffering the injury during a collision with a Rapids attacker minutes earlier. The injury is the second long-term injury for Dunivant this season as he only recently returned from abdominal surgery that was needed to repair an abdominal tear suffered in April.
"I had the MRI yesterday. It was a pretty significant tear," said Dunivant on Sunday. "I can't walk straight. It sucks."
With Dunivant out, the Galaxy's outside back depth appears thin as veteran James Riley is only now returning from a left meniscus tear, and made his first gameday roster on Friday since suffering the injury in March. Meanwhile Robbie Rogers is continuing to deal with a left hamstring strain that forced him from the gameday squad against the Rapids.
“It’s been bizarre in that outside back is where we’ve had the most trouble [with injuries],” said Landon Donovan. “Guys have stepped in and they’ve done a great job. It’s been a bit a mish-mash of guys throughout the year, but through all of that, we still have the best defensive record in the league and we’re still playing well defensively.”
At training on Sunday, Rogers revealed that he will be traveling with the team to Montreal, but expects to only be limited to reserve duty against the Impact as he looks to return to full starting duty against the San Jose Earthquakes three days later.
For both Dunivant and Rogers, the injury-riddled 2014 campaign has been a frustrating one, but Rogers insists that the two will overcome—by any means necessary.
“Todd and I were saying that someone needs to walk the field with incense and use voodoo,” Rogers joked. “For whatever reason this year, our [outside] defenders have had trouble with injuries, but that’s just part of the job.
“We've been dealing with injuries all season to different guys, but the team has done a great job of stepping up,” Rogers added. “Our team isn’t just one player obviously.”
CARSON, Calif. -- After missing the LA Galaxy's last two matches with a quadriceps injury, Robbie Rogers is expecting to be available for Wednesday's clash with D.C. United, but returning to the starting XI is a different story.
Rogers aggravated a nagging left quadriceps injury during the second half of the Galaxy's 4-1 loss to the Columbus Crew on Aug. 16 and has been on the shelf since. On Monday, Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena told reporters that he was expecting Rogers -- and Stefan Ishizaki -- to be available for Wednesday's match against United.
"I'm feeling a lot better," said Rogers. "I've gotten some treatment and some rest so I feel like I can be part of the team on Wednesday and going forward. I'm not quite sure what Bruce's plan is, but I'll probably just be part of the team."
The 27 year-old midfielder turned left back insists that he has not lost any fitness despite missing two matches, but expects that he'll be back contending for a starting spot during Sunday's SuperClasico match with Chivas USA.
"I definitely have my eyes set on that game," said Rogers.
LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena says Stefan Ishizaki and Robbie Rogers moving forward in injury recoveries
CARSON, Calif. -- Robbie Rogers and Stefan Ishizaki are on the mend, but according to LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena, the two players are inching closer to a return to action.
Rogers has missed the last two games due to quadriceps injury that he aggravated during the second half of the Galaxy's 4-1 loss to the Columbus Crew on Aug. 16 while Ishizaki was unavailable for the club's 2-0 win against Vancouver Whitecaps FC last Saturday after suffering an injury in Wednesday's win in Colorado.
When asked about the pair following Monday's training session, Arena confirmed that both are moving forward in their recoveries stating that "he would think" both players will be available for Wednesday's match against D.C. United.
With the Galaxy preparing their fourth game in 12 days and players like Rogers returning from injury even more rotation is expected heading into the match against United.
"Bruce has made it pretty clear that he's going to need everyone to be ready and healthy for these games," said forward Alan Gordon. "He's going to make a couple of adjustments each game if need be. If not, everyone still stays ready to play on the bench. We're going to have a full squad ready for this game."