CARSON, Calif. (Thursday, January 16, 2014) – The LA Galaxy announced today that the club has received and accepted an invitation from the Dr. Pepper Dallas Cup organizing committee to participate in tournament’s invitation-only Gordon Jago Super Group for a second-consecutive year. Dallas Cup is one of the most prestigious international youth tournaments in the world, and the Gordon Jago Super Group attracts some of the best academies in the world, like Manchester United, Liverpool, Club America and the Galaxy.
This year, Dallas Cup XXXV is being held from April 13-20 in Dallas. The rest of the Gordon Jago Super Group participants, along with exact dates, times and locations of the games, will be announced at a later date.
“This is a tremendous honor and opportunity for the LA Galaxy Academy to be invited to participate in the Gordon Jago Super Group at the 2014 Dr. Pepper Dallas Cup,” said LA Galaxy Academy U-18 Head Coach Ante Razov. “Last year this club viewed this tournament as an opportunity to measure itself against top level competition and realized it was not that far off. We look forward to competing against some of the best Academies from around the world and hope to improve on last year’s performance.”
In addition to the Galaxy, last year’s Super Group included English clubs Manchester United and Fulham FC, Mexican clubs Club America and Tigres UANL, Brazilian clubs Coritiba FC and Fluminense FC, German club Eintracht Frankfurt, Aalborg BK from Denmark, Kashiwa Reysol of Japan and Toronto FC as well as the Dallas Texans SC, a local club that produced Galaxy defender Omar Gonzalez and a host of MLS stars. The Galaxy Academy went 1-2-0 in group play and narrowly missed out on advancing to the tournament semifinals.
In their opening game last year, the Galaxy beat Eintracht Frankfurt 2-1 at the Cotton Bowl with goal from midfielder Drew Murphy (UC Santa Barbara) in second half stoppage time. In their second game, the club narrowly lost 2-1 to eventual tournament winner Fulham, with Murphy scoring the Galaxy’s lone goal in the second half. Needing a win and some help in third and final group game to advance, the Galaxy took a 1-0 lead on Coritiba FC but lost 3-2 and missed out on advancing to the semifinals. Their performance, no doubt, left a positive impression on organizers.
Since 1980, the Dallas Cup has hosted teams from 47 states, 100 countries and six continents. Notable stars that have played at the tournament in the past include current Galaxy players Landon Donovan and Omar Gonzalez, former Galaxy midfielder David Beckham, Manchester United forward Wayne Rooney and current Mexican national team stars Giovanni Dos Santos and Rafa Marquez, as well as former Real Madrid forward Raul and many more. For more information about Dallas Cup and its history, please visit www.dallascup.com.
BACK AT IT: The LA Galaxy Academy Under-18’s return to U.S. Soccer Development Academy play this weekend with a Sunday matchup against the Pateadores Academy at Vanguard University in Costa Mesa. The match, which is set to kick off at 10 a.m., is the first of 15 the team has left on their schedule for the remainder of the 2013-14 season.
The Galaxy Academy U-18’s (7-3-2 overall record) are currently first in the Southwest Division with 23 points, two points ahead of Real Salt Lake-Arizona (6-1-3 overall record) which has two games in hand. Under the guidance of first-year head coach Ante Razov, the Galaxy lead the division in goals scored with and have a produced an average of 2.58 goals per-game. Forward Adonis Amaya is the team’s main source of goals with 12 goals in 12 games played. The squad has also produced four shutouts and has given up one goal or less in a game nine times.
WRIGHT NAMED TO AEGEAN CUP ROSTER: LA Galaxy Academy Under-16 forward Haji Wright was one of 20 players selected by U.S. Under-17 Head Coach Richie Williams to travel to Turkey for the Aegean Cup. The tournament, which runs from Jan. 20-25, is a two-group, eight team completion that features mostly teams from Europe. The U.S. has been placed into Group B and will face reigning tournament champions France (Jan. 20), Norway (Jan. 21) and Scotland (Jan. 23). Host Turkey, Azerbaijan, Greece and Ukraine comprise Group A. The two group winners will play in the championship match on Saturday, Jan. 25, while the two group runners-up will meet the same day to decide third and fourth place, respectively. This is the third international tournament for this group of U.S. U-17’s, which last month beat Brazil 4-1 at the Nike International Friendlies in Florida to finish with a tournament-best record 2-0-1. Wright, who scored twice against Brazil, finished as the tournament’s top goal scorer with four goals in three games while playing all but four minutes at the tournament.
ERIC LOPEZ NAMED TO RESIDENCY: LA Galaxy Academy Under-14 goalkeeper Eric Lopez was named to the 2014 Spring semester of U.S. Soccer’s Under-17 Residency Program in Bradenton, Fla. Lopez joins Galaxy Academy U-16 forward Haji Wright, who was part of the 2013 Fall semester. The Galaxy duo was two of 26 players invited by U.S. U-17 Head Coach Richie Williams to Residency, where players are preparing for the 2015 CONCACAF U-17 Championship, which serves as the regional qualifying tournament for the 2015 FIFA U-17 World Cup.
ROMERO RETURNS: After taking part in the 2013 Fall semester of U.S. Soccer’s Residency Program, goalkeeper Abraham Romero rejoins the LA Galaxy Academy Under-16 team ahead of next weekend’s match against the San Juan Soccer Club. Last season, Romero played in 11 games, starting seven, while splitting time between the U-16’s and U-18’s and the U.S. U-15 National Team. During his time in Residency, Romero was part of a 20-man camp in Spain that played friendlies against Real Madrid, Las Rozas and Rayo Vallecano. He also shutout Canada in a 3-0 win in mid-November. While with the U-15’s in 2013, Romero helped the U.S. team earn a third-place finish at the Copa Mexico de Naciones with a 7-6 win against Paraguay on penalty kicks.
STAY CONNECTED: To get the latest information about the LA Galaxy Academy and its teams, follow the club on twitter @LAGalaxyAcademy or on Facebook at Facebook.com/LAGalaxyAcademy. Schedule changes, score updates and news and insights are all provided via those accounts.
THIS WEEK’S SCHEDULE
LA Galaxy Academy U-18’s @ Pateadores (Sunday, Jan. 19)
Game will be played at Vanguard University in Costa Mesa at 10 a.m.
Times and locations for all games are correct as of Tuesday, Jan. 14. Click here for a complete schedule of games in the Southern California Development Soccer League and U.S. Soccer Development Academy, which includes the Galaxy Academy’s U-12, U-14, U-16 and U-18 teams.