Galaxy & Chivas USA Announce Protected Player Lists Ahead of Wednesday’s Expansion Draft; Kirovski Back in L.A.

Galaxy Coach Bruce Arena made his first major (I use the word loosely) player deal today, reacquiring midfielder Jovan Kirovski from San Jose – and then promptly leaving him unprotected in the expansion draft.

Arena must figure Seattle won’t be crazy enough to pick a player whose stock has dropped precipitously since his 2005 move to MLS with the Galaxy.

Kirovski was traded for a first round draft pick when he moved to Colorado in 2007 after an unimpressive 48 games and 12 goals for the Galaxy; this time around, after missing most of last season through injury, he was nabbed for a conditional pick in the 2010 Supplemental Draft.

Kirovski, who has been training with the Galaxy recently, scored 12 goals in 61 games with the Rapids.

“Jovan is an experienced player who we are happy to have back with the Galaxy,” Galaxy General Manager and Head Coach Bruce Arena said. “He has shown the ability to play abroad, internationally and in MLS and is a welcome addition to our roster.”

If you say so, Bruce.

At least he’ll be familiar with another under-performing former Manchester United youth team colleague – David Beckham.

So which 11 players did Arena choose to protect?

Here’s the list: defenders Sean Franklin, Ante Jazic and Troy Roberts; midfielders David Beckham, Eddie Lewis, Brandon McDonald and Alvaro Pires and forwards Edson Buddle, Landon Donovan, Alan Gordon and Bryan Jordan.

Gordon? Pires? Hmmm.

By subtraction, that makes the following players are available: Vardan Adzemian, Charles Alamo, Ely Allen, Jeremy Barlow, Steve Cronin, Eduardo Dominguez, Joe Franchino, Micheal Gavin, Jovan Kirovski, Chris Klein, Mike Munoz, Michael Randolph, Josh Saunders, Josh Tudela, Pete Vagenas, Julian Valentin and Josh Wicks.

The alphabetical list of Chivas USA protected players: Jonathan Bornstein, Justin Braun, Bobby Burling, Alecko Eskandarian, Maykel Galindo, Atiba Harris, Sacha Kljestan, Jesse Marsch, Panchito Mendoza, Paulo Nagamura and Shavar Thomas.

So here’s whose available on the Chivas USA roster: Kraig Chiles, Jim Curtin, Eric Ebert, Dejair Ferreira, Jorge Flores, Anthony Hamilton, Dan Kennedy, Gerson Mayen, Roberto Nurse, Daniel Paladini, Lance Parker, Ante Razov, Keith Savage, Claudio Suarez, Carey Talley, Zach Thornton, Lawson Vaughn, Sasha Victorine, Raphael Wicky and Alex Zotinca.

Braun and Harris were protected, but Flores and Kennedy weren’t?

Remember, each team can only lose one player in the ten-round expansion draft and four teams won’t lose any personnel.

Notable names available for Seattle include goalkeeper Kevin Hartman, midfielder Eddie Gaven, Quavas Kirk, Ben Olsen, Nate Jaqua, Clint Mathis, Dema Kovalenko, Andy Williams and Ned Grabavoy.

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

    Kennedy won’t get picked because he’s still highly inexperienced in MLS.

    Nick replies: Just the keeper to learn from Kasey Keller.

  • Michoacano

    Couldn’t agree with you more Nick! Kennedy and Flores should have been protected!!!

  • Ben

    With the G’s only having 3 Internationals and Becks a no trade within MLS clause (unless the brand wants to) we had to protect either Pires or Dominguez, because of the MLS Expansion rules.

    I hope neither Klein nor Valentin get picked by Seattle. It would be a shame to see them go.

    How can you protect Roberts tough ?

    As for Kirovsky, that supplemental draft pick pretty much is worthless anyway, but I really hope he doesn’t make 220k a year like he did in 2008.

    Nick replies: I’m worried about Klein.

  • Ben

    Just a gut feeling or do you know something more?

    Granted he’s not the youngest in terms of soccer players and he’s got a “higher” MLS salary. But he’s played all but 15 mins in 2008 and Bruce said that Klein will move up to midfield in 2009.

    Keeping my fingers crossed Seattle overlooks him.

    Nick replies: Just a gut feeling.

  • Joseph D’Hippolito

    Protecting Gordon is bloody stupid. He has no pace, touch or skill. Does he have incriminating photos of somebody?

    Leaving Valentin and Randolph unprotected is even more stupid. Valentin just needs a chance to play; he has guts, which is something the backline desperately needs. Randolph’s stock must have fallen precipitously, as well, otherwise, it makes no sense to expose him because he has speed and spirit.

    Exposing Klein, however, had to be done. I don’t care how much of a “consummate pro” he is; he’s worthless as a defender. He doesn’t have the speed to match up with even average forwards. He has no defensive field sense. He gets juked easily and dispossessed easily with the ball at his feet 1-v-1. Klein, at best, is a backup winger, nothing more.