About Nick Green

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

Weekend EPL TV highlighted by Arsenal-Chelsea at 8 a.m. Sunday on NBCSN

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EPL Weekend TV Video Preview includes Liverpool-Manchester United at 6 a.m. Sunday on NBCSN

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Liga MX Weekend TV: Xolos and Juninho face Pachuca and Omar Gonzalez at 7:30 p.m. Friday on Azteca America

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No guarantee either will start or even get on the field, but would be interesting to see two former Galaxy guys face off.

In other notable Liga MX games this opening weekend, Club America plays Puebla at 3 p.m. Saturday on Univision, while Chivas faces Veracruz at 3 p.m. Sunday on Univision Deportes.

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Another reason to avoid paying attention to USMNT Camp Cupcake in Carson: it’s an Olympics identification camp

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The Galaxy’s Gyasi Zardes was included in the roster for the annual USMNT camp in Carson that starts next week as was a whole bunch of youngsters with an average player age of just 24.

“We start out our year with a January camp where we give the opportunity to the next wave of players to come in and make an impression and see if they are ready to step it up into international level, if they are ready to understand what it takes to become a National Team player,” said Klinsmann. “This camp will be a little bit different because we’re going to mix it almost half-and-half with senior players that are already National Team players or some that are older and maybe get the chance to play their first cap, and a lot of the Under-23 players that hopefully qualify us for Rio de Janeiro. This will be more of an identification camp and a development camp. We want to give those players a head start into their very busy year 2016, but we also want to make it clear to them that it’s a huge opportunity that you have to understand what it takes to step it up and to become an international-level player.”

From the Galaxy press release:

Zardes earns the call up after making 19 appearances for the USMNT in 2015, tying Claudio Reyna’s 1994 record for most caps by a U.S. player in their debut year with the National Team. He earned his first-ever call up to the USMNT during last year’s January camp and made his first start at StubHub Center in a 2-0 win over Panama, where he provided the game-winning assist to Clint Dempsey. In all, the Galaxy Homegrown Player score three goals and added three assists for the U.S. in 2015. Last season in MLS play, Zardes finished the campaign with six goals and four assists, bringing his Galaxy total to 26 goals and 10 assists in three seasons with the club.

Read more here.

The U.S. concludes camp with friendles against Iceland (12:45 p.m. Jan. 31 ESPN2) and Canada (7:15 p.m. Feb. 5 Fox Sports 1, UniMás, UDN).

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Does the Galaxy need another aging English import like Ashley Cole?

cole What signing? You want to sign this guy, a jocular Ashley Cole seems to be asking. (AP file photo).

The possibility of former England left back Ashley Cole joining MLS and the Galaxy from Italian side Roma at the age of 35 first appeared six days ago in that paragon of journalistic credibility, The Irish Sun.

ESPN FC’s Jeff Carlisle picked up the story, closely followed by the LA Times who appeared to have pinned down usually evasive Galaxy coach Bruce Arena with a grudging admission the media reports were “reasonably accurate.”

Not so fast.

Hours later English tabloid the Daily Mail was reporting Cole was still undecided about his future.

How excited are you about the possibility of Cole, who has played sparingly since joining Roma, joining 35-year-old Steven Gerrard in the Galaxy lineup next season? (Ahem).

Let’s hope someone tells him about the heat, humidity and long road trips. Don’t want that to be a nasty surprise like it was for Stevie, after all.

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100 Percent Soccer Column: Departure of LA Galaxy defender Omar Gonzalez gives promoted Daniel Steres an opening on back line

steresPhoto courtesy Los Angeles Galaxy

It was a case of good timing when LA Galaxy II captain Daniel Steres sat down Monday with the Los Angeles Newspaper group to discuss his promotion to the first team the week before.

The next day Omar Gonzalez was shipped to Liga MX.

Read this week’s 100 Percent Soccer column here.

BTW: Steres was inspired by the luminary likes of Real Madrid’s Sergio Ramos and Carles Puyol, a Catalan who played for Barcelona, the pride of that fiercely independent Spanish region.

Here’s why:

“I just like the tenacity that they played with,” Steres said. “I’m kind of a more calm, easy-going guy and I just like to watch them, how they get into tackles, how everything mattered with them, especially Puyol. He won every single ball, everything was just stuck in and hard and Ramos bought a little more flair.”

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Best reason for a Las Vegas road trip: LA Galaxy play San Jose Earthquakes there Feb. 13, four days after playing Club Tijuana in Carson

monteFrom Wikimedia Commons, the free media repository. Photo by Jeff Bedford.

The LA Galaxy will host the Xolos at 7 p.m. Feb. 9 at StubHub Center before taking on the Earthquakes 7 p.m. Feb. 13 at 9,334-capacity Cashman Field, a minor league baseball stadium.

Tickets to the game against the Xolos go on sale Jan. 11.

The Galaxy previously announced a Jan. 31 friendly against Armenian club FC Shirak in Carson.

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