The Los Angeles Galaxy's tour of Australia and New Zealand isn't just another bunch of friendlies, writes Andrea Canales of ESPN Soccernet. The two-game tour happens to be the debut of new coach Ruud Gullit, which adds intrigue to the team's performances against Sydney FC on Wednesday and Wellington three days later. Gullit, who returned to the Netherlands after being appointed Galaxy head coach, has not yet seen or worked with his players.
"The trip to Australia is something that I can use to observe the team," Gullit said. "We've got to work very hard to get this team playing to where we can win." The Dutchman said he was excited about the beginning of his new job: "It's a great opportunity and I want to grab it. I want to give the players tools to improve themselves."
The Galaxy roster, meanwhile, is still filled with ailing players. Of the 19 that have made the transcontinental trek, only 15 are actually healthy. "We're either exhausted or partially injured," outspoken midfielder Landon Donovan told Canales. "My calf is better, but should I be playing? Probably not. But that's the way it goes and that's the situation." Added goalkeeper Joe Cannon: "We're so depleted right now. We don't even have a full group, not even close. It's like summer
again -- except Beckham's healthy."