Where the first day of last year's training camp featured was more like a first day at school in that everyone was just getting to know one another, today's proceedings were a lot like a reunion.
Most of the players who helped the Galaxy win the Western Conference Championship in 2009 were back in the locker room today for the first day of preseason training. Even the club's new acquisitions, Clint Mathis, Michael Stephens and the Brazilian trio of Alex, Juninho and Leonardo, have all either played for the club or trained with the club in the past.
Bruce Arena and his staff open the preseason with 26 players on the club's roster, though seven of those players were excused from today's first day of camp. David Beckham and Landon Donovan remain on loan in Europe, while the three Brazilians are still awaiting clearance to enter the country. Additionally, Todd Dunivant and Chris Klein were not in attendance but rather in New York representing their fellow teammates as part of the MLS Players Union's collective bargaining agreement negotiations.
That left a group of 20 players at The Home Depot Center this afternoon, including Donovan Ricketts, who has fully recovered from the broken hand that he suffered in MLS Cup 2009, reigning MLS Rookie of the Year Omar Gonzalez, fresh off his time with the U.S. National Team and the rest of the squad.
Here is the complete list of players who are in camp with the Galaxy.
Goalkeepers - Kevin Guppy (MLS League Pool Goalkeeper), Donovan Ricketts, Josh Saunders
Defenders - Alex (not arrived yet), Gregg Berhalter, A.J. DeLaGarza, Todd Dunivant (not arrived yet), Sean Franklin, Omar Gonzalez, Yohance Marshall, Leonardo (not arrived yet).
Midfielders - David Beckham (on loan), Chris Birchall, Juninho (not arrived yet), Jovan Kirovski, Chris Klein (not arrived yet), Dema Kovalenko, Eddie Lewis, Clint Mathis, Michael Stephens.
Forwards - Tristan Bowen, Edson Buddle, Landon Donovan (on loan), Alecko Eskandarian, Alan Gordon, Bryan Jordan, Mike Magee.
That means that only five players from the Galaxy's roster at the end of the 2009 season are no longer with the club. Stefani Miglioranzi was selected by Philadelphia in the Expansion Draft in November, Kyle Patterson and Julian Valentin were waived that month as well, while Leonard Griffin and Tony Sanneh were not invited to this year's camp.
We'll have a bunch of photos from today up in a bit, as well as perhaps some interviews with a few of the guys.
Monday, January 25, 2010
Posted by LA Galaxy at 3:28 PM