Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Closing in on Colorado

The preparations for the next two games against Colorado are in full swing with Bruce Arena and Co. putting the team through their first two training sessions of the week.

The team got a break from the standard training regiment today to play a full 90 minute scrimmage against local side, the LA Blues. Alan Gordon scored twice and Jovan Kirovski added a goal in a 3-1 win that saw both Todd Dunivant and Eddie Lewis get some time wide on the left.

Other notes to pass along...

  • Eddie Lewis and Todd Dunivant were both back in training on Monday, participating in drills before each making an appearance in Tuesday's game. Dunivant is still listed as Out as he recovers from ankle surgery, while Eddie Lewis is probable with a hamstring strain that he suffered against Suwon Bluewings in the Pan-Pacific Championship Final just over a month ago.
  • Donovan Ricketts has stepped up his rehabilitation this week but remains on the injury report as questionable with his groin strain.
  • Joining Ricketts and all the goalkeepers in training this week has been former Cal State Northridge star Kevin Guppy. The Chino Hills native was a four-time All-Big West performer for the Matadors, including earning First Team honors in both 2005 and 2008.
  • Leo Griffin was back in at The Home Depot Center after undergoing sports hernia surgery in Germany late last week and has already begun his rehab.
  • Landon Donovan will be in action with the U.S. National Team on Wednesday night (4:30 p.m. PT on both ESPN2 and Galavision) in a World Cup Qualifier against Trinidad and Tobago in Nashville, Tenn. Donovan, who is expected to earn his 109th cap in that game, putting him on the verge of fifth place in U.S. history, will be back in training on Friday ahead of Saturday's game against the Rapids.
  • Looking at Saturday's game, the Galaxy have won each of their last three home league games against Colorado, scoring three goals in each.

We'll have more about Saturday's game tomorrow as the team ramps up their preparations ahead of the Rapids' visit to The Home Depot Center.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Sueño Day 2: The Videos

You've met the winners, now see what they had to go through.

The blog staff put has put together a daily recap of the event for you to watch. Special thanks to our special guest host, Republica Deportiva's Natalia Sáenz.

Day One...

Day Two...

Bonus Video... Here's a six-minute video that was broadcast live on Univision's weekly sports show Republica Deportiva on Sunday. ** Spoiler Alert ** The ending of the video features a touching moment.

Sueño Day 2: Meet The Local Winners

From left to right: Hector Ramos, Mikon "Mikey" Orellana, Cesar Silva, Javier Rodriguez.

We just got back from the San Bernardino Soccer Complex where the Sueño MLS 2009 - Built by The Home Depot LA Galaxy tryouts just came to an end. We saw a lot of good talent during the weekend, but these four stood out the best: Mikon Orellana, Hector Ramos, Javier Rodriguez and Cesar Silva.

Congratulations to everybody that came out and participated. And to those who were not selected, always remember what Dema Kovalenko told you on Saturday, "(If) you want to do something, put your heart into it and do it. If it happens, it happens. If not, life goes on."

To learn more about the winners, read MLSnet.com writer Simon Jude Samano's recap.

Also, with thanks to Univision.com, see for yourself what happened when the winners were announced.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Sueño Day 2: Hear The Local Winners

Mikon Orellana, on almost not being available to play in the finals...

A creative midfielder, Mikon Orellana battled long odds to make it to the finals (German Alegria/LA Galaxy)

Salvador Ramos, who encouraged his nephew to register...

Salvador Ramos, who lives in Mexico, will add international flavor to the finals (German Alegira/LA Galaxy)

Javier Rodriguez, who commuted everyday from Las Vegas...

Despite long hours on the road, Javier Rodriguez kept his eye on the ball (German Alegria/LA Galaxy)

Cesar Silva (in Spanish), who's a product of the same youth soccer program that produced the first Sueño MLS winner, Jorge Flores...

Cesar Silva, left, and Mikon Orellana celebrate one of Silva's two goals on Sunday (German Alegria/LA Galaxy)

Galaxy Youth Academy Goalkeeper Coach Matt Mennell, the club's head scout during Sueño MLS over the weekend, on the significance of Sueño MLS...

After selecting the four local winners, Rolando Uribe and Matt Mennell pose for a picture.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

UPDATED: Sueño MLS Day 1

If you weren't in San Bernardino, you definitely missed out on quite an event. We mean, it's not everyday you get a chance to play soccer tennis with Dema Kovalenko! Dema, after finishing his shift in the autograph booth, went to the soccer tennis court and took on any fan who would be willing to play him. Many step up to the challenge, but none was able to defeat the champ.

Be sure to watch Univision's Republica Deportiva tomorrow live at 11 a.m. to see what else you missed and find out more about the players who came out to tryout. Also, Republica Deportiva, which is filmed in Miami, will be throwing it live to San Bernardino throughout the show, so don't miss out.

The day started with more than 600 participants, but ended with 24. We just got done calling those 24, and some of them wouldn't help but shed tears of joy. They'll be back at the San Bernardino Soccer Complex tomorrow at 7:30 a.m. The scouts had a hard time selecting the 24, as there was a lot of good talent that showed up a the complex to tryout. The process is not likely to get any easier on Sunday when they need to pick four to advance to the finals.

More Day 1 pictures (Special thanks to German Alegria for the pictures)

Check back tomorrow, we'll have video, pictures and info on the four local winners and the finals.

From everybody out there in San Bernardino (Karina, Edson, Dema, Natalia, Omar, Stefani, Sam and the blog staff), good night, and good luck.

Friday, March 27, 2009

UPDATED: Promoting Sueño MLS

Miss LA Galaxy Katrina and members of her court Karina and Sam were joined by Republica Deportiva "Senadora" model Natalia Sáenz Friday morning to promote the club's participation in Sueño MLS 2009 - Built by The Home Depot. The morning started at 3:30 a.m. for the ladies and ended around 4 p.m.

The tour began with a 5 a.m. appearance on Univision's Primera Edicion and then continued at ESPN Deportes Radio where the ladies co-hosted the morning show, LA Maquina Deportiva, with Armando Aguayo, Mario Amaya and Celso Gaspar. Natalia was also interviewed via phone on the nationally-syndicated El Piolin por La Mañana show and by Récord Magazine at the ESPN Zone at L.A. Live. The tour came to an end with an interview and autograph session at LA Opinion at just after 3:30 p.m.

Relive the day's activities with this video.

Also, check out the new jerseys the Miss LA Galaxy ladies were wearing. You like?

Hot off the press. Check out the story from today's LA Opinion.

El Sueño MLS se pone bonito
CRISTIAN ECHEVERRÍA cristian.echeverria laopinion.com
La Opinion
28 Mar 2009

El sueño MLS aterriza hoy en suelo californiano con su día de pruebas en San Bernardino con cientos de jóvenes buscando una oportunidad, pero también alentados por la belleza de las reinas del Galaxy y una senadora de la República Deportiva de...read more...

Checking in With the Youth Academy

The LA Galaxy Youth Academy has begun the spring season of the U.S. Soccer Development Academy schedule and will be back in action this weekend with a pair of games at The Home Depot Center.

On Saturday the Galaxy will host Arsenal, one of the top clubs in Southern California, on Field #5. The U-16 game begins at 1 p.m. and the U-18 game starting at 3:15.

Both teams are back in action on Sunday, hosting FC Portland from Oregon. Those games be played on Field #7at The HDC, with the U-16 game starting at 11 a.m. and the U-18 game starting at 1 p.m.

All of these games are free and open to all fans.

Prior to Thursday night's training session, we caught up with a few of the players from both the U-16 and U-18 teams, as well as the Director of Player Development Trevor James to see what they thought of the team's progress, the level of play and training under the Academy coaches and staff, the first team's fightback from 2-0 down in the season opener and much more.

Here is what they had to say...

Galaxy Assistant Coach/Director of Player Development Trevor James (pictured with Billy Thompson at last season's signing day)

U-18 Goalkeeper Billy Thompson

U-18 Forward Dersu Abolfathi

U-16 Defender Drew Lind

U-16 Forward Eric Verso

U-16 Defender Jurgen Chambers (pictured with U-16 coach Steve Myles)

The U-16's, who are coached by Steve Myles, go into the weekend with a 5-2-1 record in the SoCal Division and a 10-5-2 mark overall. As it is the Division record that determines the standings in Development Academy play, the Galaxy currently sit in third place with 16 points, two points behind Arsenal and one point behind Nomads.

The U-18's are currently coached by Pomona College head coach Bill Swartz, who recently took over the job from Warren Barton, who left the organization. They enter the weekend with a 4-4-0 mark in the SoCal Division, leaving them with 12 points, eight points behind Division leaders LAFC Chelsea, and a 7-8-2 mark overall.

Follow these links to learn more about the U-16 team and the U-18 team. Additionally, be sure to stay tuned for the announcement of the Galaxy's U-20 team, which will again compete in the USL Super-20 League this summer.

Lastly, here are some more photos from Thursday's training session.

Working for the Weekend

The Galaxy held their final training session of the week today at The Home Depot Center, playing some small-sided games and working through a series of drills ahead of the upcoming games against Colorado on April 4 and April 7.

While most of the players will be off on both Saturday and Sunday (injured players will be in for treatments on Saturday morning), there is definitely a lot going on around the Galaxy this weekend.

Before we get to the weekend schedule, be sure to check out Paul Oberjuerge's piece in today's New York Times about Landon Donovan and his position as a lightning rod for criticism, despite his wealth of talent.

The focus this weekend will be on the youth as the Galaxy are hosting the local tryouts for Sueño MLS in San Bernardino on Saturday and Sunday. In addition, the Youth Academy will play a pair of games this weekend, with both the U-16 and U-18 teams playing Arsenal on Saturday and FC Portland on Sunday.

We'll have more from the Academy later today and will keep you updated on everything that is going on at Sueño throughout the weekend, including the appearances of Dema, Edson, Omar and Stefani at the First Kick Ceremony on Saturday afternoon.

Follow these links to learn more about the U-16 team, the U-18 team and Sueño MLS.

Additionally, all MLS games and a host of international matches are on TV this weekend, giving you the chance to enjoy a soccer-packed weekend without leaving the sofa or the laptop.

But if you feel the need to watch a professional game live in person this weekend, come out to The Home Depot Center for the inaugural game of the WPS and the Los Angeles Sol as they host the Washington Freedom at The Home Depot Center. The game kicks off at 3 p.m. on Sunday.

Help Save a Life and Win a Trip to the MLS All-Star Game

The Galaxy have joined forces with the Chicago Fire, D.C. United and the Seattle Sounders FC for a four-team challenge to help prevent the spread of malaria. As part of the Nothing But Nets campaign, the four teams will raise money in a month-long challenge, with all funds going toward the purchase, distribution and education about the proper use of a long-lasting, insecticide-treated bed net, which can prevent malaria. Nets cost just $10 and can lower malaria transmission by up to 90 percent.

The Galaxy are asking fans to take part in the challenge by making a monetary donation to Nothing But Nets at the LA Galaxy Foundation booth during the club’s next three home matches against the Colorado Rapids (April 4 and April 7) and Chivas USA (April 11). Fans wishing to make a contribution online can do so by visiting the Community section of the Galaxy website at http://www.lagalaxy.com/.

If the Galaxy are able to raise more money that the other three teams, one lucky Galaxy fan, who donated money to the cause, will win a trip for two to the 2009 MLS All-Star Game at Rio Tinto Stadium in Salt Lake City.

For more about this challenge you can read the press release here, or visit the MLS Works website.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Sueño MLS -- Beauty, On And Off The Field

Sueño MLS is much more than just a tryout here in LA. It's an event that's open to the public at no cost.

The focus of the weekend remains on the field, the 600 participants and Galaxy Youth Academy coach Matt Mennell, who will be the club's lead scout at this event. But, that doesn't mean this event is only for the more than 1,800 players who registered for this event.

Sueño is open to all Galaxy fans and soccer fans and fans of Republica Deportiva. On Saturday, Edson Buddle, Omar González Dema Kovalenko and Stefani Miglioranzi will be in attendance at the San Bernardino Soccer Complex from 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m. Additionally, Republica Deportiva "Senadora" model Natalia (pictured top right) will be there from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and Miss LA Galaxy Katrina and the Miss LA Galaxy court from noon to 3 p.m.

Galaxy Street Team and Futboleres will also be there doing activities and giving out prizes. ESPN Deportes Radio will be broadcasting and doing giveaways live from the San Bernardino Soccer Complex as well. The main giveaway item is a team autographed jersey, similar to the one the guys autographed last week.

To get directions to the San Bernardino Soccer Complex, check here.

For more details, read this story.

To see Cobi's message to the participants, go to SuenoMLS.com.

Sunday Postgame

We left out one video from our recap on Tuesday, so be sure to check out more highlights and postgame audio here. The audio on the highlights come from Joe Tutino who had the call of the game on AM 570.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

On the Road to Recovery

On a glorious SoCal Wednesday, the team was back in training this morning, with nearly the entire squad heading out onto the field. Edson Buddle continued to workout with Strength and Conditioning Coach Ben Yauss on the side, while Donovan Ricketts jogged around the training field and did some light goalkeeping drills with Ian Feuer.

While those two worked out on their own, Todd Dunivant, Eddie Lewis and Stefani Miglioranzi all trained in full. We caught up with all three of the guys to talk about their recoveries and how they feel after getting back on the field.




However, not all news on the injury front was positive, as Leonard Griffin has flown to Germany to undergo a hernia operation. Famed German surgeon Dr. Ulrike Muschaweck will perform the operation in Munich on Thursday and Griffin will return to Los Angeles on Friday before starting his rehab on Monday.

Sean Franklin was the last Galaxy player to be operated on by Dr. Muschaweck, undergoing a bi-lateral hernia operation in mid-January before returning to the field less than a month later.

In non-injury news, be sure to read two pieces at lagalaxy.com by Larry Morgan, one about the impact of Bruce Arena's three substitutions against D.C., and the other is a look at the friendly sibling rivalry between LA President of Business Operations Tom Payne and D.C. President Kevin Payne.

Lastly, take a look at the MLS produced series Rookie Life, which features A.J., Omar and a host of MLS rookies as they navigate the first year of their professional careers.

Click here to watch the debut episode and here for the second.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Looking Back at Sunday

With the team having the day off today, we thought that we would look back at the season opening draw with D.C. United

Watch video highlights of the match here. (Including this goal.)

Here is the goalscorer Landon Donovan, who left for international duty on Monday morning, speaking to the media in his postmatch press conference.

And Bruce discussing the game with the media in his press conference.

A number of guys also fielded questions postgame in the locker room, including...

Chris Klein

Dema Kovalenko

Omar Gonzalez

and Kyle Patterson

Lastly, check out these images of our Galaxy Futboleros in action at the Sunday's game.

Tom Payne Joins World Soccer Daily

Galaxy President of Business Operations Tom Payne was a guest this morning with Steven and Kenny on World Soccer Daily.

Follow this link to download the entire show and fast forward to the 15-minute mark to hear the start of the interview, which goes on for a little more than 20 minutes. In the interview, Payne discusses the start of the Galaxy season, the David Beckham loan deal, this summer's friendlies and much more.

Additionally, be sure to listen to Dave Denholm's weekly soccer podcast over at ESPN 710 AM. Click here to listen to this week's episode and add this page to your bookmarks to be able to listen to the show each and every week.

Monday, March 23, 2009

My (Re)Generation

The whole team was back at The Home Depot Center today for a short training session ahead of tomorrow's day off.
The starters from Sunday stayed inside with Athletes Performance and Strength & Conditioning Coach Ben Yauss for a regeneration session while the rest of the squad hit the field for a light workout under the watchful eyes of Dave, Cobi, Trevor and Ian.
Included in the group that worked outside was Alan Gordon and Stefani Miglioranzi, each of who were removed from today's injury report, as well as Todd Dunivant who participated in one of his first sessions as he continues his long rehabilitation process from last year's ankle surgery. Additionally, Edson Buddle worked out with the training staff as he aims to be ready for the Galaxy's next game against Colorado on April 4.
With so many players working out in the gym, the numbers outside were a bit slim, meaning that Cobi donned the pinny and got stuck in today, even doing the fitness work at the end of the session.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Galaxy Score Twice Late to Earn 2-2 Draw

LA Galaxy 2, D.C. United 2
March 22, 2009
The Home Depot Center – Carson, Calif.

Scoring Summary:
DC – Christian Gomez 1 (Penalty Kick) 44’
DC – Chris Pontius 1 (Rodney Wallace 1) 62’
LA – Landon Donovan 1 (Penalty Kick) 80’
LA – Landon Donovan 2 (Kyle Patterson 1) 85’

Misconduct Summary:
LA – Dema Kovalenko (Yellow Card) 44’
DC – Rodney Wallace (Yellow Card) 56’
DC – Christian Gomez (Yellow Card) 69’
DC – Josh Wicks (Yellow Card) 79'

LA Galaxy: Josh Saunders, A.J. DeLaGarza, Tony Sanneh, Omar Gonzalez, Sean Franklin, Josh Tudela, Dema Kovalenko (Kyle Patterson 80’), Mike Magee (Bryan Jordan 59’), Chris Klein, Jovan Kirovski (Alan Gordon 76’), Landon Donovan©.

Subs Not Used: Miguel Benetiz, Yohance Marshall, Julian Valentin, Stefani Miglioranzi.

D.C. United: Josh Wicks, Rodney Wallace, Greg Janicki, Dejan Jakovic, Devan McTavish (Marc Burch 79’), Bryan Namoff, Clyde Simms, Ben Olsen© (Thabiso Khumalo 72’), Christian Gomez (Andrew Jacobson 83’), Chris Pontius, Luciano Emilio.

Subs Not Used: Milos Kocic, Anthony Peters, Francis Doe, Jaime Moreno.

• With the draw, the Galaxy begin the season 0-0-1. They are now tied with the Houston Dynamo for third place in the Western Conference with one point.
• Six of the 11 players that started the game for the Galaxy were not with the club at the end of the 2008 MLS season.
• For the second straight season, the Galaxy used two draft picks in their starting lineup for the first game of the season, with Omar Gonzalez and A.J. DeLaGarza each starting in defense. Last year, both Ely Allen and Michael Gavin were in the Galaxy’s starting XI for the season opening loss to Colorado.
• This was the first time since the 2006 season that the Galaxy began their season at home. The Galaxy are now 9-4-1 all-time in their home openers and 6-5-3 in season openers.
• With his goal in the 80th minute, Landon Donovan ended the Galaxy’s run of 461 minutes without a goal on opening day. Prior to Donovan’s goal, the last time a Galaxy player scored in the season opener was on April 3, 2004 when Jovan Kirovski scored in a 3-2 win over New England at The Home Depot Center.
• Donovan’s two goals on the day made him the first Galaxy player to score two goals in the season’s first game since Carlos Ruiz did in a 2-1 overtime win over D.C. United on March 23, 2002.
• Kyle Patterson’s assist on Donovan’s game-tying goal in the 85th minute was the first of his MLS career.
• With the draw, the Galaxy are 0-0-1 this season when allowing the game’s first goal. Last year they were 2-13-4 when falling behind 1-0.
• The attendance for today’s game was 18,013.
• For more about this afternoon’s game, please visit www.lagalaxy.com.

Ready for The 2009 Season

We're 40 minutes away from kickoff here at The Home Depot Center. The lineups are in.

Here's who the Galaxy will go for the season opener.





Subs: Ricketts, Valentin, Marshall, Miglioranzi, Patterson, Jordan and Gordon.

D.C. United





Subs: Kocic, Burch, Jacobson, Peters, Khumalo, Doe, Moreno.

It's Game Day

Exactly 146 days since their last MLS game, the Galaxy are back in action this afternoon at The Home Depot Center.

D.C. United is the opponent and if you forget what happened the last time these two met, read here.

But to read more about today's game, you can check out any of these stories from MLSnet.com.

Game Preview/Season Outlook/Yohance Marshall feature/Tony Sanneh feature.

You can also read a pair of previews in the Los Angeles Times here and here.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Injury Report

The latest injury report is now available on the website.

Miguel Benitez, a league pool goalkeeper who trains with the club, has been called up due to "extreme hardship".

Share thoughts and comments below.

Landon Called In For National Camp

No surprise here. Landon Donovan, the all-time leading goal scorer for the stars and stripes, was one of 22 players called in to the National Team by Bob Bradley today ahead of World Cup Qualifiers at El Salvador (March 28) and against Trinidad & Tobago (in Nashville on April 1).

Here's the roster by position:

GOALKEEPERS (3): Brad Guzan (Aston Villa: 4/3 SO), Tim Howard (Everton: 8/6 SO), Marcus Hahnemann (Reading: 1/1 SO)

DEFENDERS (7): Carlos Bocanegra (Rennes: 17/2), Danny Califf (FC Midtjylland: 3/0), Jay DeMerit (Watford: 1/0), Frankie Hejduk (Columbus Crew: 15/1), Oguchi Onyewu (Standard de Liege: 13/1), Heath Pearce (Hansa Rostock: 8/0), Jonathan Spector (West Ham United: 2/1)

MIDFIELDERS (7): Freddy Adu (AS Monaco: 5/1), DaMarcus Beasley (Glasgow Rangers: 22/6), Michael Bradley (Borussia Mönchengladbach: 7/4), Maurice Edu (Glasgow Rangers: 3/0), Sacha Kljestan (Chivas USA: 7/0), Pablo Mastroeni (Colorado Rapids: 12/0), José Francisco Torres (Pachuca: 2/0)

FORWARDS (5): Jozy Altidore (Xerez C.D.: 4/1), Brian Ching (Houston Dynamo: 13/6), Clint Dempsey (Fulham FC: 13/4), Landon Donovan (Los Angeles Galaxy: 26/9), Eddie Johnson (Cardiff City: 9/8)

*numbers indicate all-time World Cup Qualifying caps/goals

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Autograph Session

One of the cool aspects of becoming a professional athlete has to be giving an autograph. Not everybody is asked for an autograph and the players, veterans and rookies alike, know that. As Yohance Marshall said, "This right here is going to make someone happy. That's special."

Last week, the players spent about 20 minutes after the training session autographing 2009 Galaxy memorabilia that will be used in promotions and giveaways during the season at various Galaxy events and home games. It was the team's first autographing session of the season, and Marshall's first of his career.

Here are some pictures we snapped of the guys during the autograph session.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Getting Ready for United

Today was the first day of the rest of our season. Well, sort of.

After having Sunday and Monday off, the guys returned to the field today ahead of Sunday's season opener against D.C. United. Eddie Lewis. who had been out since being taken out in the first half of the PPC championship game on Feb. 21., returned to the field as well. Lewis stretched with the team, but was on his own for most of the session. He will look to do more tomorrow.

Donovan Ricketts did not practice.

For the training session, the guys were split into four groups for games of 5 v 5. These contest are very usually competitive and today was no exception. The matches are a great way to start the week. Not sure which team won, but a group of veterans, led by Landon Donovan, seemed to be most pleased at the end.

FS West was here to shoot their first feature of the season. We won't give any of the details away, you'll just have to tune in to "Galaxy Live" (at 11:30 a.m. on PrimeTicket) to find out who is being profiled.

Most of the media was interested in talking to Bruce Arena and Tony Sanneh, the club's latest addition to the roster. Arena said Sanneh had yet to miss a single training session ("there probably aren't five other players who have accomplish that in preseason," said Arena) and that he's helped Omar.

Hear more about what Bruce had to say.

And here are Tony's thoughts on signing with the Galaxy.

We also caught up with Eddie Lewis, who is happy to be back on the field with the guys.

As an extra bonus, here are more photos from today's training session.