Mike Muñoz named LA Galaxy Academy Under-14 Head Coach

CARSON, Calif. (Friday, May 30, 2014) – The LA Galaxy announced today the club has named Mike Muñoz as the LA Galaxy Academy Under-14 head coach.  Muñoz, 30, is a former LA Galaxy midfielder and current LA Galaxy Academy Under-16 head coach. Muñoz will retain his position as the U-16’s head coach in addition to his new duties as head coach of the U-14’s.

“This was a very simple decision based on the impact Mike has had on our U-14 Academy team in just a few short months,” said LA Galaxy Academy Director Pete Vagenas. “He is one of the most highly regarded youth coaches in America and his experience in both the U.S. Soccer Development Academy and youth national team program will be maximized at the LA Galaxy Academy U-14 level.”

Muñoz took charge of the LA Galaxy Academy Under-14 squad after former Galaxy Academy U-14 head coach Greg Vanney left the club to become the new Assistant General Manager and Academy Director at Toronto FC.

Muñoz has been a coach in the Development Academy since retiring from the game in 2009. He was named head coach of the Galaxy U-16’s on July, 2013, leading the squad to a 17-3-6 record and helping them qualify to the 2013-14 USSDA Academy Playoffs. Muñoz began his coaching career in the 2009-10 season when he served as an assistant coach with the Galaxy U-16’s. His first chance to be a head coach came the following season, when he was named head coach of the Real Salt Lake-Arizona U-16’s ahead of the start of the 2010-11 campaign. That season, Muñoz was named the Development Academy U-16 Coach of the Year after guiding RSL-Arizona to a 16-8-4 overall record and a win in the Development Academy Finals Third Place match.

Along with his USSDA Academy experience, Muñoz has also served as an assistant coach with USA U-14 and U-15 national team programs.

“This is a great opportunity to establish the LA Galaxy culture and identity, style of play and what it means to play for the Galaxy in our younger players,” said Muñoz. “While every age group is equally important in terms of player and team development, this age group is arguably the most important age in terms of their soccer education.  The LA Galaxy feel that these younger players are really the future of our club and providing them a fantastic education in all the principles of the game at this age is vital for their success and the success of our club.”

The LA Galaxy Academy has been a part of the U.S. Soccer Development Academy since its inception in 2007. The Galaxy Academy program has produced seven Homegrown Players, including six in the last three years, forwards Jack McBean and Jose Villarreal in 2011, defender Oscar Sorto and forward Gyasi Zardes in 2012, and forwards Bradford Jamieson IV and Raul Mendiola in 2014. Tristan Bowen, who currently plays for Seattle Sounders FC, became the first player in MLS history to be signed directly from the club’s Academy as a Homegrown Player in 2008.

LA GALAXY ACADEMY TEAMS HOST STRIKERS FC ON SATURDAY: The LA Galaxy Academy Under-18, Under-16, and Under-14 return to U.S. Soccer Development Academy action when they host Strikers FC at StubHub Center’s Field 5 on Saturday, May 31 in what will be the LA Galaxy U-18’s and U-16’s last game in the USSDA regular season. Both the Galaxy U-18’s and U-16’s qualified for the 2013-2014 Academy Playoffs after receiving an automatic bid to the 2013-14 Postseason.

The Galaxy Academy U-18’s (18-5-3, 57 points) will kick off this weekend’s action when they host Strikers FC U-18’s (5-19-2, 17 points) on Saturday, May 31 at 10:00 a.m. PT. The Galaxy U-18’s are coming off a convincing 5-0 victory against the Arsenal FC U-18’s as Adonis Amaya tallied a hat trick while Mark Hernandez and Hugo Gutierrez rounded out the scoring. The Galaxy U-18’s blanked the Strikers FC last October on the road 3-0 at the University of California-Irvine Stadium Field. Amaya opened the scoring for the Galaxy U-18’s in the 65th minute and eight minutes later Christian Chavez doubled the team’s lead. It then took all of two minutes for Amaya to tack on the third and final score.

The action continues at 12:30 p.m. PT, as the Galaxy Academy U-16’s (17-3-6, 57 points) host the Strikers FC U-16’s (13-16-7, 46 points) at StubHub Center’s Field 5. The Galaxy U-16’s dropped a 1-0 result to Arsenal FC in their most recent USSDA match. In the last meeting between the Galaxy and Strikers FC U-16 side last October, the team traveled to the University of California-Irvine Stadium Field and had to come from behind to deal Strikers FC a 2-1 defeat. After the hosts jumped out to an early lead in 18th minute, Jorge Ruiz netted his fourth goal of the season in the 27th minute to level the score at 1-1. Just when the game seemed destined for a draw, in the closing moments of the game, Jonathan Ramirez beat Strikers FC goalkeeper Jonathan Lee Klinsmann in the 87th minute to grant the Galaxy U-16’s their second win of the season.

Saturday’s tripleheader action will wrap up when the Galaxy Academy U-14’s take on the Strikers FC U-14’s at 3:00 p.m. In their last encounter, forward Hanif Wright scored three goals as the LA Galaxy U-14’s beat the Strikers FC Under-14’s 5-1 on the road at Anteater Stadium on the campus of UC Irvine. Wright, 14, scored the games’ first two goals in the 10th and 12th minutes. Fellow forward Noa Harrison made it 3-0 in the 20th minute with his fourth goal of the season before Strikers pulled one back in the 31st minute. In the second half, Wright got his hat trick in the 48th minute and re-gave the Galaxy a three goal lead. Just before the game ended, an own goal by the Strikers made it 5-1. The Galaxy U-14’s still have four games left to play in USSDA regular season action and will play their next game on June 7 against Central California Aztecs U-14’s at StubHub Center’s Field at 10:00 a.m.



LA Galaxy U-18’s vs. Strikers FC U-18’s

Saturday, May 31

Game will be played at StubHub Center - Field 5 at 10:00 a.m.

LA Galaxy U-16’s vs. Strikers FC U-16’s

Saturday, May 31

Game will be played at StubHub Center - Field 5 at 12:30 p.m.

LA Galaxy U-14’s vs. Strikers FC U-14’s

Saturday, May 31

Game will be played at StubHub Center - Field 5 at 3:00 p.m.

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