Acquired by Los Angeles: Signed by the Galaxy on December 23, 2008.
The 2010 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year, Donovan Ricketts is back for his third season with the Galaxy. An All-Star in each of his first two seasons with the club, Ricketts has the lowest goals against average in the history of MLS amongst goalkeepers that have played in more than one game. An imposing presence in the goal, the Jamaican international set a club record with a 0.90 goals against average and tied a club record with 11 shutouts last season. A major factor in the Galaxy’s defensive improvement over the past two years, Ricketts will look to replicate that success again this season.
2010: The MLS Goalkeeper of the Year and a member of the league’s Best XI, Ricketts was in goal for 29 of the Galaxy’s 30 regular season games and all three postseason games in 2010. He set a club record with a 0.90 goals against average and tied a club record with 11 clean sheets as the Galaxy allowed just 26 regular season goals, the lowest single season total in the club’s history. Ricketts opened the year by going 311 minutes without allowing a goal, stretching his scoreless streak to 612 minutes between the end of the 2009 season and the start of the 2010 campiagn, the second longest shutout streak in MLS history. He kept a clean sheet in eight of his first 10 games of the year and did not allow more than one goal in a game until 7/10 at New England. The Jamaican international finished the year with 18 wins, which were the most in MLS and the most by a Galaxy goalkeeper since the abolishment of the shootout after the 1999 season. He did not play in the Open Cup, but did record a win in the second leg of the CONCACAF Champions League Preliminary Round against Puerto Rico, giving LA their first win in the competition since 2003. Ricketts was also in goal for all three of the club’s postseason games, starting and playing the full 90 minutes in each. An MLS All-Star for the second straight season, Ricketts was the starting goalkeeper for MLS as they took on Manchester United at Reliant Stadium in Houston. 2009: The Galaxy’s Defender of the Year and an instant fan favorite, Ricketts was a major reason for the Galaxy’s defensive improvements in 2009. He missed much of the preseason and the first two games of the regular season with various injuries before making his MLS debut on 4/11 vs. Chivas USA. He kept a clean sheet in that game, making five saves, and was named the MLS Player of the Week. That was his first of nine shutouts on the season for Ricketts, tying him for the second most shutouts in a single season by a Galaxy goalkeeper. He earned his first win on 5/2 vs. New York when he made one save in a 1-0 win. His second win came on 6/5 at Toronto FC when he made a season-high 10 saves. He missed two games in July while with Jamaica at the CONCACAF Gold Cup, but returned in time to play in the 3-1 win at New York on 7/16, saving a Juan Pablo Angel penalty in second half stoppage time. He played the first half of the friendly with AC Milan on 7/19, allowing one goal. One week later, Ricketts was forced to leave the 1-1 draw at Kansas City after suffering a hip injury when he crashed into the post while trying to stop a Claudio Lopez shot. That injury forced him to miss the friendly with Barcelona, but he was back in the lineup for the 2-1 win at New England on 8/8. He kept three consecutive clean sheets from 8/19-8/29, helping the Galaxy to wins at Chicago on 8/19 and vs. Chivas USA on 8/29 and a draw at D.C. United on 8/22, though he had to leave the win over Chicago with five minutes left because of a cut above his right eye that required stitches. He allowed a season-high six goals vs. FC Dallas on 9/12, but then kept a clean sheet a week later vs. Toronto FC, making one save to become the first goalkeeper since 2006 to earn a shutout after allowing six goals in the previous game. He earned his 10th win of the season in the regular season finale vs. San Jose on 10/24, making two saves in a 2-0 win. That shutout was the Galaxy’s 12th of the postseason, setting a new club record. In the postseason, Ricketts continued his fine form, shutting out Chivas USA in Game Two of the Western Conference Semifinal Series and Houston in the Western Conference Championship. He made two saves during MLS Cup, but was forced to leave the game in the 66th minute with a broken hand, Ricketts left the game shortly after allowing a goal to Robbie Findley, snapping the club’s streak of 314 minutes without allowing a goal.
2008: Ricketts returned to his original club, Village United, for the end of the 2008 campaign before signing with the Galaxy in December. He appeared in one game for the Jamaican National Premier League team before coming to MLS. 2004-08: Ricketts joined Bradford City of England’s League Two in July 2004 and appeared in four games during his first season before establishing himself as the club’s top goalkeeper. He played in more than 100 games for the club before March 2008 when he was refused entry back into England following an appearance with the Jamaican National Team as the result of a discrepancy on his work permit. As a result, he was released by the club at the end of the 2007-08 season. 2004: Signed with Bolton Wanderers of the English Premier League in January, where he was joined by fellow Jamaican National Team player Ricardo Gardner. However, he did not appear in any games for Bolton in his time at the Reebok Stadium, and he signed with Bradford in July. 2002-04: Began his professional career in Jamaica with Village United, one of the nation’s top clubs.
Ricketts has earned 76 caps with the Jamaican National Team since making his debut in a World Cup Qualifier against St. Vincent and the Grenadines in the run up to the 2002 FIFA World Cup. Ricketts kept a clean sheet in that game as Jamaica won 1-0 in Kingstown. Despite having never been capped by the full National Team, Ricketts was in his country’s final 22-man squad as they qualified for the 1998 World Cup in France for the first time in Jamaica’s history. He was on the roster, but he did not play in the tournament with Warren Barrett preferred in goal. He featured in Jamaica’s World Cup qualifying bids for the 2002, 2006 and 2010 World Cups, having appeared in a total of 24 World Cup qualifiers during the last three qualification cycles. He played in and started all eight of Jamaica’s World Cup qualifiers in 2008, keeping five clean sheets, including in each of their last three games, only to see Mexico narrowly sneak into the final round of qualifying on goal difference, eliminating Jamaica. He has twice played against the United States in a World Cup qualifier, with both matches finishing 1-1. In December 2008, he helped lead Jamaica to the Digicel Caribbean Championship, keeping three clean sheets in five games and allowing two goals in the other two games. The tournament was held in Jamaica and saw Ricketts and the Reggae Boyz win for the first time in 10 years, defeating Grenada 2-0 to lift the crown. He was in goal for all three of Jamaica’s games at the 2009 CONCACAF Gold Cup, allowing just two goals in those three games as Jamaica narrowly missed out on advancing to the Quarterfinals.