Former Chivas USA midfielder Kljestan scores in UEFA Champions League debut

OK, so it was only against a Welsh Premier League outfit in a stadium that seats 1,000, but, hey, a goal is a goal:

(AP) American midfielder Sacha Kljestan scored in his European Champions League debut, helping Belgium’s Anderlecht win 3-1 at Wales’ The New Saints in the first leg of the third qualifying round on Tuesday night.

Kljestan, of Huntington Beach, scored the game’s first goal in the seventh minute, He was acquired in June from Major League Soccer and Chivas USA. The 24-year-old had 15 goals and 33 assists in 114 games for Chivas USA over 4 seasons and was the team’s most valuable player in 2008.

He was on the 30-man preliminary World Cup roster before getting cut when it was trimmed to 23.

Kljestan has 24 international appearances and played for the U.S. at the 2008 Olympics. Kljestan also played in Anderlecht’s 1-0 win over Ghent in the Belgian Super Cup last Friday.

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About Nick Green

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!