Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
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
Arena addresses Galaxy changes for 2013
December 7th, 2012 12:19AM

MOST READ
TAGS:  african nations cup, americans abroad

MOST COMMENTED

[MLS SPOTLIGHT] The Los Angeles Galaxy did what only two other MLS clubs have done and that's repeat as MLS champion. In a league where high turnover is generally the rule rather than the exception, Bruce Arena, the Galaxy coach, managed to keep his team intact for its 2012 title defense. That won't be as easy in 2013.

English star David Beckham won't return for 2013, and Swedish international Christian Wilhelmsson, brought in late in the 2012 season, won't be back, according to Arena.

The status of at least five other starters on the 2012 MLS Cup championship team is up in the air.

Landon Donovan says he wants to spend time with his family before committing to soccer in 2013. As it is, his contract will be up at the end of next season.

Omar Gonzalez's MVP performance in Saturday's title game has renewed speculation about his move abroad.

If that happened, it won't be like last winter when he went on loan to Nuremberg, hurt his knee in the first day of practice and was sidelined for half of the 2012 MLS season. Arena says Gonzalez won't be going on loan this winter.

As for the possibility of a transfer during the January window, “Omar Gonzalez is on our team, that’s how we’re preparing. We’re not worried about anything until that changes and right now he’s a member of our team.”

Brazilian midfielder Juninho, who set up Gonzalez's tying goal in the 3-1 win over Houston in the final, has played on loan from Sao Paulo for each of his three seasons with Los Angeles. At first, he wasn't expected back for 2012 but eventually returned.

Arena wants Juninho, ranked No. 1 among central midfielders by Soccer America, back in 2013. “We’ve been working on that for a while,” he said in a conference call with Los Angeles writers. “We’ll keep working on that, we’re hopeful that we can bring him back.”

Goalkeeper Josh Saunders and midfielder Mike Magee are both out of contract, but Arena said the Galaxy has made offers to both of them.

The four other starters on the 2012 MLS Cup team are expected back: right back Sean Franklin, rookie center back Tommy Meyer, left back Todd Dunivant and Irish striker Robbie Keane.

The only changes from the 2011 championship team were Meyer, who was starting in place of the injured A.J. DelaGarza, and Wilhelmsson who played on the right side of midfield, which allowed Donovan to move up front. (In last year's final, Adam Cristman started up front in place of the injured Chad Barrett. Cristman was released after the 2011 season, and Barrett was loaned to Norwegian club Valerenga midway through the 2012 season.)

Arena's ability to find and keep high-quality players at modest salaries has been key the Galaxy's enduring success in the face of the constraints it had to meet the salary cap with three Designated Players -- Beckham, Donovan and Keane -- on the roster.

Three MLS Cup starters made less than $100,000 -- Juninho was a steal at $65,625 -- while Dunivant ($146,750) and Magee ($126,635) were great values.

As for a replacement for Beckham, Arena would not comment on the possibility of Kaka coming to Los Angeles. He was clear about what the Galaxy could afford to pay.

“We can afford whatever Tim Leiweke and Phil Anschutz say we can afford," he said. "Those kinds of decisions really go up the ladder. Each situation as it comes along our way is evaluated."

How long that chain of command from Arena to Leiweke, the AEG president, to Anschutz, the AEG owner, lasts remain to be seen.

Anschutz put AEG up for sale this fall with the expectation that the sports and entertainment giant of which the Galaxy is just a small part could be sold for a figure in the $10 billion range.



No comments yet.

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




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
U.S. U-18s split two-game series with Germany    
The U.S. under-18 men's national team dropped a 3-2 decision to Germany's U-18s to finish with ...
MLS Trade Central: Friday's deals    
After two disastrous years in England, Brek Shea is back in MLS, signing with expansion club ...
MLS lines up exciting tripleheader for first Sunday    
MLS will open its 2015 season on March 6 when the defending champion LA Galaxy hosts ...
Video Pick: Alex Meier on Fire     
The leading scorer in the Europe's highest scoring league is a player you may not have ...
What They're Saying: Chris Wondolowski    
"I'm not over it. I'm not sure I'll ever get over it. [Pause] I actually think ...
U.S. U-20s win at San Pedro Sula    
San Pedro Sula is no easy place to play as the USA (2-1 loser in the ...
Press and Lloyd combine for all seven in U.S. win    
After a tie and loss in its first two games at the Torneio Internacional da Brasilia, ...
What They're Saying: Juergen Klopp    
"He took a wrong turn at some point. But everything is back to normal now. He ...
TV Report: MLS expansion teams ink local deals    
As expected, New York City FC has entered into a multi-year agreement with YES Network, while ...
Timbers land Wake's Vidovich to run T2    
The Portland Timbers, who dipped into the college ranks to get head coach Caleb Porter, have ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives