Wednesday Night Kicks

Because my e-mail in-box is clogged, I give you:

*Word that San Pedro’s Carlos Martinez (Wilmington Jr.) and Fontana’s Victor Chavez were selected to the U.S. Under-17 team that will play in the World Cup for the age group later this month in Nigeria. Full squad and schedule here.

*A Q&A with Robbie Rogers of Rolling Hills Estates in the wake of his World Cup qualifying performance here.

*News that Fontana’s Maurice Edu was a victim of racism – by fans of his own club Glasgow Rangers. Classy. And he reported the incident via Twitter.

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Report: WPS Sol $2 Million in Red, WPSL Ajax “Broke”

That’s according to Brian Boswell, coach of the Rolling Hills Estates-based Women’s Professional Soccer League club Ajax America (for years now one of the top women’s teams in the nation and a WPSL finalist again last year) and a sometime contributor to this blog.

The revelations were contained in what is essentially a begging letter circulating via e-mail that seeks to ensure the continued existence of Ajax.

Boswell also has close ties to the Sol and it’s the first-time I’ve seen semi-confirmation from someone associated with the team regarding the long-rumored magnitude of the team’s losses.

Still, Anschutz Entertainment Group, which has part ownership of the Sol, has committed to the team for at least one more season and the club will play next year at Home Depot Center again from what I’ve heard.

Here’s the text of Boswell’s e-mail exactly as he wrote it:

Hi Everyone,

Please excuse this mass e/mail but many of you have watched the Ajax women play and/or participated in 1 or more of the Ajax Academies.

Ajax is one of the top women’s teams in the world. Last year we were the LA SOL’s reserve team and had 11 of the SOL players on our roster. We have been US Soccer National Champions 6 times, WPSL national Champions twice in the last 9 years and in the WPSL final 4 of the last 4 years.

Ajax is broke.

Each year we have been able to raise money through the Academies and some wonderful sponsorships. Plus 4 years ago we won $20,000 playing in an international tournament in Korea which we have been using.

For Ajax to play next season we need to raise a minimum of $12,000. This covers league fees, field fees, travel fees, referees fees etc. Notice no coaching fees.

We were hoping this year we would get financial support from the LA SOL but its possible there will not be an LA SOL. They lost over $2 million last season and may not be around for next year. Leaving Ajax as the best women’s soccer you will be able to see locally.

Obviously we would love to find 1 sponsor who would donate the whole $12,000 but we realize that is probably impossible but please feel free to be that sponsor. Realistically we are hoping to find 120 families who would be willing to donate $100 each to the Ajax team.

We hope there are enough of you who have watched and enjoyed Ajax playing that you would want it to continue. We have never charged admittance, just hoped you would come up, watch and enjoy.

Please let me know if you would like to donate or have any ideas that we could use to raise the money.

Please consider this and please pass this onto anyone you feel could help or anyone we have missed.

Any donations are tax deductible.

Thank you all for your support in the past and hopefully the future.



Brian Boswell Ajax

Brian’s telephone number is listed on the team’s page, BTW, for anyone who wants to help or get in touch with him.

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Galaxy’s Donovan Named Player of Year, Decade

i-895817e51c5a898f86407a4914381d8d-LDPOY.jpgAP Photo

For the sixth time within 10 years Redlands native Landon Donovan was named Honda Player of the year today in Los Angeles.

Donovan previously won the award in 2002, 2003, 2004, 2007, 2008 and this year beat out goalkeeper Tim Howard and striker Jozy Altidore to win the award yet again as the best player on the national team.

So naturally they gave him a Player of the Decade award, too.

One question: what is he going to do with his latest Honda vehicle that’s given to the winner? They must be clogging up the driveway.

More details here.

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Tuesday’s Column: The Second Coming of Javier Aguirre

Read the column here.

There were a couple of Aguirre quotes left over that didn’t get into the column for space reasons.

The first concerns the infamous incident against Panama in the Gold Cup where Aguirre actually enters the field of play in an effort to influence the game.

The incident is here if you haven’t seen it:

And here’s Aguirre’s rationale for his actions:

“When I lifted up my foot it was just an impulse. I felt like the other team was taking control of the game and I didn’t have any control over it. … It was just an act of frustration. It was a stupid reaction – something I’m not very proud of.”

Here’s Aguirre on the doubts he had about his recall of Blanco to the national team, although the player’s passion or talent was not the issue:

“His knee was the only thing that had me worried. When he told me he was ready to play, his knee was fine, there were no more doubts.”

Finally, here’s Aguirre on his relationship with the media:

“It’s very difficult for me to always be in the limelight. I don’t like giving interviews. It’s very difficult for me to be in the public eye.”

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College Scoreboard

Men’s Games
Cal State Northridge 1 UCSB 0
Loyola Marymount 0 Saint Mary’s 1
UCLA 2 Stanford 0
CSUDH 4 Cal State East Bay 1

Women’s Games
Cal State Fullerton 0 Cal State Northridge 1
Stanford 2 UCLA 0
Pepperdine 2 Gonzaga 0
Cal Poly 1 Long Beach State 0
California 2 USC 3
CSUDH 2 Cal State East Bay 0

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Stalemate in Texas

Houston Dynamo 0 Galaxy 0

Game story

MLS Standings

That’s not going to do anyone any good.

Galaxy lineup: Donovan Ricketts, Todd Dunivant, Gregg Berhalter, Omar Gonzalez, Sean Franklin, Dema Kovalenko, Eddie Lewis (Jovan Kirovski 84′), David Beckham, Chris Birchall, Mike Magee (Landon Donovan 53′), Edson Buddle (Alan Gordon 67′).

Capsule summary: The resting/absence of Landon Donovan in the first half clearly hindered the Galaxy’s creativity, Buddle had an off game and the Galaxy likely would have lost if not for goalkeeper Donovan Rickets (again) in this rather nondescript game.

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Sunday Galaxy Gameday

As far as regular season MLS games go, they don’t get much bigger than the one scheduled for noon on Fox Soccer Channel Fox Sports West between Houston and the Galaxy: sole possession of first place in the Western Conference is on the line with only two games left in the regular season.

Galaxy game preview

Glenn Davis chronicles the reasons to watch for the uninitiated.

Now excuse me, but I must brunch before the game begins.

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Chivas USA-Earthquakes Postgame

Game story.


Notable: Chivas USA are undefeated in their last six games.

But they also haven’t scored more than two goals in a game all season long.

MLS standings


“I tried to warn the group (that) there is no easy games. I don’t think we took them lightly tonight,” said Chivas USA Coach Preki on facing the lowly Earthquakes. “The game against New York, the game against San Jose tonight might haunt us in the end in the standings.”

Here’s Sacha Kljestan on Chivas USA’s lack of proficiency on scoring from set pieces:

“We’ve never been a really good set piece team. Earlier in the season we had a goal off a corner kick or something, but I don’t think we’ve ever been a good team on set pieces. Defensively I think we’ve been really good this year on set pieces and tonight we gave up two goals on set pieces so it’s disappointing. But I don’t know what it is.

And finally, here’s Kljestan on the significance of the result:

“We should have been at 47 points tonight and alone in first place, but there’s nothing you can do now, you’ve just got to move on. We still have games in hand. We still hold the keys to our own destiny.

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Final: Earthquakes at Chivas USA

Chivas USA 2 San Jose Earthquakes 2

Chivas USA Coach Preki’s body language in the closing minutes of this game (off of bench, hands on hips, hand smacked into palm, etc.) told you all you needed to know about the coach’s frustration and the recognition this was a perfect (lost) opportunity to put the Galaxy and Dynamo under pressure Sunday.

Chivas USA has, at least temporarily, got a tenuous one point lead atop the Western Conference, but Preki just couldn’t solve the Earthquakes’ defense and get the winner. It was not for want of trying – Maicon Santos, Eduardo Lillingston and Jesus Padilla all came on as second half subs – but frankly Chivas USA lacked the killer instinct that will be so crucial in the playoffs.

Santos was to blame for missing two good scoring opportunities inside one minute.

Braun summed up Chivas USA’s night of futility when he failed in stoppage time to put a shot on frame with only the goalkeeper to beat, instead allowing a diving Andrew Weber to swipe it off his feet. Less Braun, more subtlety needed, one would think. BTW, he was chosen man of the match!

A disappointing game and disappointing attendance given the import of this game, too: 12,316.

More later.

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