Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySoccer World DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America ClassifiedsGame Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
Galaxy trims five as Arena reshapes Galaxy
by Ridge Mahoney, February 26th, 2009 7AM



[MLS] Last autumn, a month or two after Bruce Arena had replaced Ruud Gullit as Galaxy head coach, a colleague of mine talked about his recent trip to LA and predicted darkly of its fate.

"A lot of the players don't like Bruce," he said, and forecast that by the end of the 2009 season, at the latest, he'd be gone.

I replied, "Well, then, he'll get rid of them. And he only has an 18-month contract, which takes him to the end of 2009 anyway. So that's not out of the question."

This doesn't imply that the players traded, cut or released by Arena since he took over were jettisoned because they didn't like the coach, and the five waived yesterday -- goalkeeper Steve Cronin, defenders Brandon McDonald, Mike Randolph and Troy Roberts, and forward Ely Allen -- were anything more than players who simply didn't fit into his plans. They didn't play much, if at all, in the preseason, and that's a reliable indicator.

Someone has to go so room can be made for the arrival of several veterans: goalie Donovan Ricketts, midfielder Dema Kovalenko, forwards Mike Magee and Jovan Kirovski, and defender Todd Dunivant as the March 2 roster and salary-cap compliance date draws near. Arena gave Venezuelan defender Leo Bautista a long look, but cut him loose a week ago in a previous wave of departures.

All this boosts the stock of rookies Omar Gonzalez and A.J. Delagarza, and veteran Tony Sanneh as candidates for back-line duty. With Landon Donovan's return in two weeks looking more likely by the hour, what the Galaxy will look like when the regular season begins is becoming clearer.

Of the five, Roberts had the longest tenure and the most experience, playing 61 games in four seasons after being drafted out of Cal in 2005. He played in nine of the 10 games following Arena's hiring and a career high 17 in 2008. Cronin also came to LA in 2005 and earned the starter's job for the 2008 season, but his 2.05 goals-allowed average and inconsistent handling in 22 games labeled him a probable departure even before a broken hand forced him to miss the last two months of the season.

Randolph came to LA from USL-1 Portland in September, 2006, and played 39 games at left mid and left back. Allen and McDonald were selected in the 2008 SuperDraft and played a combined 28 games while battling various injuries.

Cronin has already reported to Portland; no word yet on whether Randolph is headed there, too. Might Roberts join his brother Jamil in San Jose?
The cuts leave the Galaxy with 27 players, three above the MLS limit of 24. Gonzalez and DeLaGarza aside, Arena has replaced youngsters with veterans, so as to win now and leave the future for later.

No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now



Recent Soccer America Daily
What They're Saying: Jurgen Klinsmann    
"Watching the MLS playoffs has been tremendously exciting. The games in the first round with the ...
Klinsmann: Nagbe is a 'great fit' for national team    
One of the standouts in the MLS playoffs has been Darlington Nagbe, who has helped the ...
What They're Saying: Didier Drogba    
"It's a different challenge [in MLS]. People think it's easy to play there. Believe me, it's ...
What They're Saying: Stocksbridge Park Steels chairman Allen Bethel    
"I can't believe what I've been seeing on Saturday nights. He's always on his own. Why ...
MLS: Sporting KC continues talks with five free agents    
Sporting Kansas City re-signed 12 of the 13 players it had options on -- all but ...
MLS: Orlando City declines option on Hall    
Stemming from the roster moves announced Wednesday, Orlando City SC may not look radically different in ...
MLS: Revs re-sign Kobayashi, send three to Portugal    
New England announced Wednesday it has renewed the options on 14 players, signed midfielder Daigo Kobayashi ...
Sacramento wants to show it's ready to roll    
While efforts by David Beckham's group to find land for a soccer stadium in Miami appear ...
Johnson scores again in Champions League    
Fabian Johnson scored in his second straight game for Borussia Moenchengladbach in the UEFA Champions League ...
USA names 20 for U-20 Women's World Cup qualifying    
Eight collegians and 12 youth club players comprise Coach Michelle French's roster for the U-20 Women's ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives