Thursday Lunch: Chivas USA & Galaxy, Becks and Pecs

Imploding Galaxy

ESPN color analyst Eric Wynalda, holding court in the press box before the last Galaxy home game, joked that the initials of Galaxy owner AEG actually stood for Auditioning Executives Group rather than Anschutz Entertainment Group.

Wynalda’s acronym makes even more sense when you learn that the suits at AEG apparently believe Coach Frank Yallop has more to do with the Galaxy’s ghastly season than their greedy marketing decisions that sapped the team of any vitality.

Incidentally, Wynalda observed that after he made the AEG crack to GM Alexi Lalas, his former U.S. international teammate didn’t talk to him for five days.

Lalas isn’t talking to beat writer Billy Witz about Yallop either.

I wouldn’t put it past the Auditioning Executives Group to fire Yallop though; after all this is the same company that fired Sigi schmid with the Galaxy in first place in MLS.

Chivas USA Flees Fires

It wasn’t a mandatory evacuation, but with health concerns rising in Los Angeles because of the ash and smoke in the air Chivas USA decided to head to Kansas City a day early ahead of Saturday’s playoff game.

Crummy air quality has physicians advising even elite athletes not to exercise.

Chivas USA will fly out this afternoon after a light training session.

After training (Wednesday) morning at The Home Depot Center we decided that it is in the best interest of our players for us to depart a day early for Kansas City ahead our crucial playoff game on Saturday, said Chivas USA Head Coach Preki. At the same time, as residents of Southern California, I want to say that our hearts go out to the thousands of families who have lost their homes, as well as to the brave men and women who are fighting on the front lines to help contain the fires.

Who’s The Biggest Hunk

This is terribly tabloid, but try as I might I just can’t resist.

Askmen.com readers have just voted David Beckham as their No. 1 choice in the Web site’s annual survey of the year’s 49 top men. Allegedly the voters were mostly male.

Meanwhile, trashy NBC celebrity gossip show Extra has pronounced Chivas USA’s (injured) striker Ante Razov a “soccer hottie” “with gorgeous green eyes.”

He also has a reputation as being a generally moody type (team officials recently tried to convince me Razov is just terribly shy, but on this video evidence I’m not buying that).

Oh, and because enquiring minds will want to know, Torrance’s Jack Stewart (latterly of Real Salt Lake) did not win Cosmo’s Bachelor of the Year contest.

College Shorts

A 51st minute goal by Rafael Garcia was enough to give Cal State Northridge (5-3-5) a 1-0 win and their first victory of the Big West Conference season Wednesday over visiting Cal State Fullerton (5-8-2).

Northridge returns to action at 7 p.m. Saturday when they travel to UC Santa Barbara, in what many consider the most heated rivalry in the Big West.

The NCAA Division II Mens Soccer Committee has released its first soccer regional rankings of the season and Cal State Dominguez Hills, ranked No. 16 by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA), finds itself 3rd in the NCAA Far West Region poll.

From the (edited) CSUDH press release:

The Toros, winners of five straight and seven of their last eight, boast a 14-3 overall and 10-2 CCAA record, and sit eight points ahead of Cal State L.A. in the CCAAs south division.

CSUDH is led by a potent 1-2-3 offensive punch in seniors Sammy Rivas (Long Beach, CA/CS Fullerton) and Jose Serpas (Costa Mesa, CA/Orange Coast College), and sophomore Mario Guerrero (Riverside, CA/La Sierra HS), who have combined for 20 goals, 11 assists and 9 game-winning scores, a stellar defensive line in senior Devin Toohey (Santa Paula, CA/Ventura College) and sophomore Kevin Gallaugher (Walnut, CA/Rio Hondo JC) that has blanked opponents in eight contests and has allowed just 13 goals all season, and stellar play in net by sophomore Derby Carrillo (La Mirada, CA/St. John Bosco HS), who recently picked up his second Brine/CCAA Player of the Week Award and leads the conference in shutouts, save percentage and goals against average.

Seattle University, which the Toros bested 2-0 on September 2, sits atop the NCAA Far West poll with a No. 6 ranking in the NSCAA, and is followed by Sonoma State, ranked No. 11 by the NSCAA.

The Toros conclude their regular season with two home games this weekend, hosting Cal Poly Pomona at 7:00 pm on Friday, followed by a 5:00 pm match-up against Cal State San Bernardino two days later, which will also mark the final regular season home game for eight Toro seniors.

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About Nick Green

South Bay-based Los Angeles News Group columnist and blogger Nick Green writes about soccer at the 100 Percent Soccer blog at www.insidesocal.com/soccer and craft beer at the Beer Goggles blog at www.insidesocal.com/beer. Cheers!