Tuesday’s Column & Bruins Ball

The Galaxy’s slim playoff hopes as seen through the lens of their unlikely 2005 MLS Cup run was the subject of today’s column that appears weekly in the Daily News and Daily Breeze.

Incidentally, the David Beckham effect continues without Beckham; the Galaxy’s game in Houston Sunday is reportedly sold out, a first for the team since the former Earthquakes moved to Texas.

Finally, for what it’s worth English tabloid the Daily Mirror is reporting today that former Manchester United teammate Roy Keane, now boss of EPL team Sunderland, is offering Beck’s a six-month loan deal during the MLS off-season. And it’s apparently not worth much.

Meanwhile, the UCLA men’s soccer team (3-4-1, ranked 18th by Soccer America) hosts the University of San Diego (3-4-0) in a mid-week non-conference game at 7 o’clock tonight at Drake Stadium before starting up Pac-10 play at San Diego State (4-2-2) Saturday. UCLA fans wearing blue receive $2 off admission at the ticket booth at the main entrance.

UCLA are drawing in the fans at away games, according to their media relations office:

UCLA road games this year (five away, one neutral) have averaged 4,007 fans. School attendance records were set at Indiana (7,423) and at Creighton (5,812), and the Bruins played in front of an over-capacity crowd of 3,143 at San Francisco. In addition, the team played in front of season-best crowds of 2,333 at Santa Clara and 1,095 at Cal State Northridge. Overall this season, the Bruins are playing in front of crowds averaging 3,258.

The UCLA media relations office also offered this injury update:

The Bruins’ leading scorer in 2006, David Estrada, returned to the lineup last weekend, making his season debut at Cal State Northridge and playing 76 minutes. Estrada had missed the Bruins’ first seven games with a fractured metatarsal. Last season, Estrada was Soccer America’s Freshman of the Year after scoring 12 goals and four assists for 28 points, the second-most goals and points ever scored by a UCLA freshman.

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  • Inigo Montoya

    A Galaxy question:

    Where do you look for actual information – as opposed to pure speculation – on Chris Albright’s or Abel Xavier’s or David Beckham’s fitness? (I’ve never even seen an article about how Albright’s surgery went, or how his rehab is going, which is surprising for a member of the US national team.)

    Is it possible that any of them could play in, say, the Oct 21 game against Chicago? Or even before that?

    More broadly, is any media outlet doing any real reporting on the Galaxy beyond watching games and reading press releases? Does any reporter observe workouts or talk with players or staff?

    Nick replies: Galaxy practices are closed. The few that are open do so for the last 15 minutes, a tactic designed to limit information disclosure.

    Information regarding injuries is deliberately vague; would you want opponents to know which of your players shouldn’t really be on the field?

    And the quality and quantity of information may surprise you: I recall Coach Frank Yallop saying he received an update on Beckham only every week or so.

    Still, via e-mails (and bumping into hobbling players in the hallway) you glean what you can.

    I leave pure speculation to the English tabs though.