Money mismatch: Red Bulls’ $5.6 million man Thierry Henry takes on the Galaxy’s $197,000 a year defender Omar Gonzalez in Saturday’s encounter at Home Depot Center (AP Photo).
*Salary numbers that is. MLS wage figures were released over the weekend and while some reporters busied themselves fiddling with spreadsheets and calculating expenditures by team and median salaries I tried a less statistical (but hopefully readable) take on the data in today’s column.
*To no-one’s surprise Home Depot Center was named today to host MLS Cup 2011, the fourth time the championship game has been held in Carson. The game will kick off at 6 p.m. Nov. 20 live on ESPN and Galavision.
“We are proud and excited to bring Major League Soccer’s championship event back to the City of Los Angeles and The Home Depot Center, one of the finest sports venues in the United States,” said MLS Commissioner Don Garber. “MLS Cup has grown into a four-day celebration of the world’s game in North America. We believe that Los Angeles and The Home Depot Center will be a superb stage for MLS Cup 2011.”
Galaxy and HDC owner Anschutz Entertainment Group had lobbied hard to bring the game back to Southern California for the first time since 2008 when the Columbus Crew beat New York, 3-1.
“Los Angeles is very familiar with hosting major events and this championship game is going to be embraced by the entire city,” Galaxy President Tom Payne said. “We would like nothing more than to be playing in MLS Cup 2011 at home in front of our fans.”
No kidding. Sadly, last time the event was held here without the Galaxy playing the South Bay (let alone the city in general) barely noticed. Let’s hope that’s a little different this time around.
*In Galaxy-related news today, Philadelphia Union striker Carlos Ruiz rips his former team ahead of Wednesday’s game between the two while New York striker Luke Rodgers rips mouthy Landon Donovan.
Love it. Just don’t see this sort of thing very often in the too polite MLS. And, of course, there’s just enough grains of truth in what both Ruiz and Rodgers said, which is always guaranteed to start a healthy argument or three.
*Finally, the Chivas USA reserves lost 3-2 in Seattle last night against their Sounders counterparts. Trialist Chris Cortez got both goals for the visitors on either side of halftime.
Michael Lahoud, who hasn’t played since sustaining a concussion last month at San Jose, started for Chivas USA and went the full 90 minutes.
Chivas USA XI: 30-Sergio Arias; 24-Bryan de la Fuente, 38-Ian Hines-Ike, 4-Michael Umaa, 11-Michael Lahoud; 36-Chris Rodriguez, 6- Francisco Mendoza, 8- Mariano Trujillo, 14-Gerson Mayen; 27-Chris Cortez, 99-Victor Estupinan
Updated 9 a.m.
United Soccer Leagues announced this morning it has punted the three Puerto Rican teams from USL Pro.
All three teams were in the same division as the LA Blues, a weird geographical grouping that made as much sense as a team with LA in its name playing most of its games in Orange County.