CARSON, Calif. – LA Galaxy Homegrown defender Oscar Sorto may not be going joining the U.S. Under-20’s for the CONCACAF U-20 Championship in Mexico later this month, but he’s looking to make the most of his opportunities with his club.
Sorto had been called up by U.S. U-20 head coach Tab Ramos for a pair of recent camps, but did not join his teammate Jose Villarreal for the tournament, which takes place in Puebla, Mexico later this month. Not representing the U.S. as they fight for a berth in the 2013 U-20 World Cup in Turkey later this year is a blow for Sorto, but he attests that he’s not thinking about that and focusing on the preseason.
“It’s going good and the training is going well and I’m trying to get more strength in my body,” said Sorto. “I’ve learned that I just need to get stronger because during our preseason game against Salt Lake, I was bouncing off people and I don’t want that to happen.”
Galaxy head coach and general manager Bruce Arena agreed that as Sorto improves his physical play, he’ll only become more influential on the field.
“He’s done fine,” said Arena. “He’s a young player still. The physical part of the game is a little tough for him and I like to think that when he matures a little bit more physically that he’ll be fine.”
A few other notes from training on Tuesday…
*The Galaxy play a scrimmage on Wednesday against UCLA as noted by Time Warner Cable Deportes' Elmur Souza and head coach Bruce Arena told reporters that players will begin to see additional minutes on Wednesday and a subsequent scrimmage on Saturday: “We’ll give most of our players 45 minutes and give them a few more minutes on Saturday and then build it into next week when we start getting our first XI together.”
*Arena also stated that Brazilian midfielder Juninho is continuing to move along: “He’s moving along and he’s going to play a little bit more tomorrow as well. We need to make some quick progress in the next couple of weeks.”
*Charlie Rugg took part in his first full day of training on Tuesday even participating briefly in an intra-squad scrimmage. When asked about his “It’s great. I guess that it’s one day at a time and hopefully the next step is getting in a game, but I’m not sure about tomorrow, but we’ll see the next step…it depends on what the trainers let me do and how the rest of the week goes.”
*Rugg also discussed what the Galaxy training staff has him working on at the moment: “I have a morning exercise strengthening the area that was injured and then a routine warm up and ice down.”
*Juninho stayed after the end of the training session to practice his free kicks. After the Brazilian trained for a few minutes alone, he was joined by several other Galaxy players –including Mike Magee—who joined in on the fun.
*Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena confirmed to reporters after training that Re-Entry Draft selection William Hesmer will not join the club in 2013.