Day 2 in Arizona Highlighted By Spirited Two-Hour Workout
– The LA Galaxy held
their second training session of the week in Arizona on Tuesday morning, once again
taking advantage of pristine weather in the area with a spirited two-hour
practice. With temperatures hovering around 80 degrees and hardly a cloud in
the sky, the coaching staff put all 26 players through an intense session that
helped to build on their work from Monday, as well as getting them prepared for
tomorrow’s game against Colorado.
Per usual, Strength and Conditioning Coach Ben Yauss took the team through their warmup, which
was highlighted by some mirroring drills that saw two players facing one
another, with the follower trying to mimic the cuts and movements of the leader
before breaking off for a short five or 10-yard sprint.
Once they were sufficiently warmed up, the players worked on
their one and two touch passing over short and intermediate distances. The
focus was on getting all the players ample touches on the ball while also
getting them to keep the ball on the ground, making it easier for their
teammates to receive.
Once that was done, assistant coaches Curt Onalfo and Gregg
Berhalter took the defenders and some of the central midfielders to one end of
the field, while head coach Bruce Arena and associate head coach Dave Sarachan
took the forwards, wide midfielders and two central players to the other end of
the field for crossing and finishing work.
While the defensive group was focused on building an attack
from the back and being able to pass your way out of trouble, the attacking
players peppered goalkeepers Josh Saunders and Donovan Ricketts with shots.
Playing across the width of the field, the ball would start at one goal to be
played between the two central midfielders, who would then feed one of the
wingers, setting up a cross and hopefully finish from one of the two forwards
who were running onto the ball. As that was going on, passes were being sent
from the side of the goal to a waiting forward, who would take one touch and
hammer a shot at the other goalkeeper, or hit it first time.
After nearly a half hour of that, the two groups were
combined for a full field 11v11 game, first featuring 10 minutes of shadow play
during which the team on defense could only put light pressure on the ball,
emphasizing team shape and cohesiveness. The proverbial training wheels were
then taken off and the guys played 15 minutes of full speed game action that
saw Juan Pablo Angel finish off a Landon Donovan cross, giving their team a 1-0
After the session, the team had about 20-25 minutes of free
time that saw Adam Cristman, who arrived from Virginia on Monday evening, put in some
extra finishing work with Brian Perk and Sarachan, and Chris Birchall working
on his distribution and passing along with Onalfo.
Back at the hotel, the players made their way after lunch to
the training room, where they got massages and any injury prevention work done
by the club’s training staff. Additionally, Dan Keat, who has been stepping up
his workouts over the past two weeks, jumped into the hotel pool for a quick
workout with Yauss and Head Athletic Trainer Armando
Rivas while many of the hotel guests looked on.
The team will be back on the field Wednesday afternoon when
they take on the Colorado Rapids. The game kicks off at 10 a.m. and we will
have all of the coverage right here at lagalaxy.com.
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