Roller-coaster season. Then-coach Curt Onalfo benched Van Damme in the first half of a match against Chicago in early May. The Belgian responded to lead the Galaxy on a six-game unbeaten streak but the Galaxy hasn't won a game since then. In Van Damme's last appearance, new coach Sigi Schmid's first game back with the Galaxy, he was red carded for a third time.
French replacement. The Galaxy is expected to sign 33-year-old French center back Michael Ciani, a veteran of nine teams in France, Italy and Spain, as a replacement. As a free agent, Ciani can be signed at any time before MLS rosters are frozen on Sept. 15.
LA Galaxy general manager Pete Vagenas: “Jelle came to us and requested to return home to Belgium to be closer to his children. We worked closely with Jelle and Royal Antwerp so that we could make this move possible for Jelle and his family. Our top priority remains the success of the LA Galaxy.”