The supplier to one of the highest scoring teams in the USL in 2016, the LA Galaxy II midfield will have a new look in 2017 with a share of departures and new faces.
Offseason departures included Alejandro Covarrubias, Kainoa Bailey, Bryam Rebellon and Denzel Slager while Miguel Aguilar and Andrew Zanga were added. Jaime Villarreal signed an MLS contract with LA Galaxy, but is expected to continue featuring for Los Dos.
The new core has gotten the chance to build chemistry in the seven preseason scrimmages Los Dos has participated in ahead of 2017, but the unit’s first big test will come this Saturday in the team’s season opener.
Aguilar signed with LA Galaxy II in March after training with LA Galaxy for much of the preseason. A former D.C. United midfielder, Aguilar recorded 23 MLS appearances in 2015 and 2016, including four starts.
At 23, Aguilar will be one of the oldest and most experienced members of LA Galaxy II. On top of his foundation of fundementals, his composed play and mentality will be valuable on a young LA Galaxy II squad.
Since signing with LA Galaxy II midseason in 2015, Vera has appeared in 15 games for Los Dos. The 20-year-old attacking midfielder will be looking to play a more productive role for Los Dos in 2017 after completing his first full season with LA Galaxy II in 2016. Will 2017 be the year Vera records his first goal and assist for LA Galaxy II?
Fujii reached 20 appearances in his second season with LA Galaxy II. Often coming off the bench, the central midfielder found the net three times in 2016. Collecting more starts in 2017 would make for a big step in progression for the 20-year-old.
Signed from the same Cameroonian soccer academy as defender Jean Engola, Zanga joined LA Galaxy II this offseason. In scrimmages, he’s played as a holding midfielder as well as a box-to-box midfielder who can cover plenty of ground. The central midfielder has also displayed sound passing ability.
Jaime Villarreal and Raul Mendiola
Despite being signed to LA Galaxy earlier this month, Los Dos fans can still expect to see Villarreal on the pitch for LA Galaxy II this season. One of Galaxy II’s strongest performers in 2017, Villarreal was made captain after Jack McBean was signed to LA Galaxy midseason. His 27 appearances led all LA Galaxy II members in 2016, adding two goals and four assists along the way.
The Galaxy’s Mendiola will also be featuring for Los Dos in 2017. A game-changing creative spark for Los Dos, Mendiola is one of the biggest offensive threats in Los Dos’ arsenal.
LA Galaxy II’s season opener, presented by Bare Republic, will see Los Dos take on Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 on Saturday, March 25 at StubHub Center Track & Field Stadium (2:00 p.m. PT). Fans save money when they purchase LA Galaxy II tickets online, available here.