*Neither the Galaxy nor MLS have responded to a report Sunday that had leading scorer Edson Buddle snubbing a new contract with MLS for a struggling second-tier German outfit.
It’s hard to blame Buddle, who turns 30 in May, for wanting to make some serious coin if reports of his likely paycheck are accurate. But it’s also another black eye for MLS who with non-moves like this will be perceived yet again as a minor-league operation even if it’s also clear that desperate European clubs are prepared to pay outlandish amounts for players.
*The Galaxy, however, did acknowledge in a press release this morning that Assistant Coach Cobi Jones, right, is leaving the club after 15 years to become associate director of soccer with the New York Cosmos, while also serving as an ambassador for the club. The 40-year-old was, of course, a Galaxy original in 1996 and has been a coach at the club since his retirement three years ago.
“I am both honored and blessed to have had such a wonderful career with the LA Galaxy and I am thankful for everything the club, the fans and the community has done for me and my family,” Jones said. “While I am excited to begin this next chapter of my career, I am honored to have been part of the Galaxy organization for the last 15 years as a player, a coach and a member of the LA soccer community. I am thrilled that I was able to play professional soccer in my hometown and help lead the team to championships, hoisting the MLS Cup trophy and more. For that, I will forever be grateful to the Galaxy and the fans.”
From the club’s press release:
Originally allocated to the Galaxy on March 6, 1996, Jones scored the first goal in club history and is the only player in MLS history to have played each of the first 12 seasons of the league’s history with the same team. The club’s all-time leader in a number of statistical categories, Jones scored 70 goals and added 91 assists in 306 career regular season games. He is one of just five players in league history to record 70 goals and 90 assists during his MLS career and still ranks 10th in league history in games played.
His best season in MLS came in 1998 when he set career highs for goals (19) and assists (13), despite missing nearly two months of play while with the U.S. National Team in France at the World Cup. Jones tallied either a goal or an assist in 18 of the 24 games that he played that season and was named the Galaxy’s MVP and a finalist for MLS MVP as the Galaxy set a league record for goals scored that still stands today.
Jones won his first league championship when he captained the Galaxy to the club’s first-ever MLS Cup title in 2002.