CARSON, Calif. (Thursday, June 23, 2011) – The LA Galaxy announced today that the club has re-signed defender A.J. DeLaGarza to a multi-year contract. Now in his third season with the club, DeLaGarza is on pace to set new career-highs in games played, games started and minutes played this season as he has been a near-permanent fixture in the heart of the Galaxy defense. He has played in and started 16 of the Galaxy’s 18 games this year, playing primarily in central defense alongside either Omar Gonzalez or Leonardo for a total of 1,433 minutes, which are the third most on the team. Per team and league regulations, details of the contract were not released.
Player Profile: A.J. DeLaGarza
"We are pleased to have re-signed A.J. In his three years with the Galaxy, he has been a valuable player both on and off the field,” said Galaxy general manager and head coach Bruce Arena. “He continues to grow as a player and we look forward to having him as a member of the Galaxy for many years."
“I am excited to be able to continue my career with the Galaxy here in Los Angeles and Major League Soccer,” DeLaGarza said. “This league continues to make great strides toward becoming a top league and I look forward to being a part of it for a long time to come.”
A two-time College Cup champion at the University of Maryland, the Galaxy traded up into the second round of the 2009 MLS SuperDraft in order to be able to select DeLaGarza with the 19th overall pick. As a rookie, DeLaGarza appeared in a career-high 23 games, making 21 starts while playing both right and left back. A native of Bryans Road, Md., DeLaGarza had one goal and one assist that season while also making two postseason appearances for the club when he played the full 120 minutes of the Western Conference Championship win over Houston and then played the final 31 minutes of MLS Cup after replacing the injured Omar Gonzalez.
Last season, DeLaGarza appeared in 17 regular season games, making 14 starts and scoring one goal while playing both right and left back, as well as his natural position of central defense. Despite standing just 5-foot-9, DeLaGarza was used as a center back throughout the final month of the season as well as in the 2010 MLS Cup Playoffs, where he played the full 90 minutes in all three of LA’s games.
DeLaGarza and the Galaxy are back in action on Saturday, June 25 when they look to extend their unbeaten streak to 10 games against the San Jose Earthquakes at Buck Shaw Stadium. The club will be back in action on Tuesday, June 28 when they host the USL Pro League’s Los Angeles Blues in the Third Round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup at Titan Stadium in Fullerton, Calif. Tickets for this game start at just $10 and are on sale now. Please visit www.lagalaxy.com for more information or to purchase tickets for this game or any other Galaxy game.