Former U.S. National Team Captain Carlos Bocanegra to retire at end of Major League Soccer season

Veteran defender Carlos Bocanegra, 35, an Upland native who has made 30 appearances for Chivas USA over the last two seasons, has announced his retirement effective at the end of the MLS season.

Bocanegra has missed the half dozen MLS games because of concussion.

“I’m still hungry for the game and I want to play, but unfortunately you can’t play forever,” he said in a statement released by the club. “I was thinking about this in the offseason, and it took me about six months to come to a final decision.

“The timing is right for me,”added the UCLA product. “I’ve known for a little while now in my mind and in my heart. I’m happy with it, and I’m looking forward to the new challenges.”

Bocanegra did not say what those plans are, but will talk to reporters Friday morning.

A former MLS Rookie of the Year with Chicago in 2000, Bocanegra spent the bulk of his career in Europe playing for Fulham in the EPL before moving to France for four years and then onto Glasgow Rangers.

He played in two World Cups for the U.S., making a total of 110 international appearances, before he was discarded midway through the last World Cup qualifying campaign.

Read more about his career in the link embedded in the Tweet above, read what Bocanegra has to say about it in his own words here or just watch this:

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SuperClasico Labor Day Weekend Rewind: Game over for rivalry as LA Galaxy beat Chivas USA (yet again)

Since losing to Sporting Kansas City July 19, the Galaxy have reeled off six wins, dropping just five points in the eight games and ending with a 13-goal spree over four games in 11 days. Impressive.

No wonder coach Bruce Arena lost track of how many games they have played where. Next up: Colorado Friday in Carson.

Mercifully, this rivalry series is finished.

And no column from me today because of the holiday weekend.

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SuperClasico Shootout: LA Galaxy’s Gyasi Zardes V. Chivas USA’s Cubo Torres

It’s a match made for MLS: the prolific American starring for his local MLS club that plays in Carson a short South Bay skip from his Hawthorne hometown verses the all-time top Mexican scorer in MLS facing off in one of the biggest soccer markets in the country.

The face-off isn’t perfect.

Both players have cooled off of late.

And Torres, who should be pulling in capacity crowds, plays for a uniquely unpopular club fumbling toward oblivion and is virtually unknown compared to revered Mexican stars he has surpassed such as Carlos Hermosillo, Luis Hernandez and Cuauhtémoc Blanco.

Yet players like these represent the future of MLS.

Beat writer Phil Collin sat down with both of them ahead of Sunday’s last-ever SuperClasico.

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Weekly Soccer Column: With SuperClasico looming at weekend, U.S. Soccer announces LA Galaxy playmaker Landon Donovan to make final national team bow Oct. 10

The game in Hartford, Conn., is a friendly against Ecuador and will air live on ESPN.

“For 15 years, Landon has thrilled us with his amazing abilities on the field and impressed us with his gracious approach off the field,” said U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati. “We are looking forward to celebrating his legacy during our next home National Team match and allowing fans the opportunity to thank him for all the memories he’s provided over the years.”

There was no quote from Jurgen Klinsmann in the press release, BTW.

Oh, and for the actual column on the upcoming SuperClasico, click here.

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Major League Soccer Sunday: LA Galaxy win over Whitecaps in Carson, Chivas USA lose again

This was a more comfortable victory for the Galaxy than the 2-0 scoreline reflected over a Vancouver team seemingly without the self-belief to try for a win in Southern California where the visitors have traditionally performed poorly. Reporter Phil Collin filed the game story.

The result has the Galaxy lurking menacingly just two points behind the trio of Western Conference leaders and putting a seven-point cushion on the fifth-place Whitecaps.

Meanwhile, Chivas USA lost yet again, this time in Boston to the New England Revolution and haven’t scored in five consecutive games.

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Major League Soccer Saturday: LA Galaxy host Vancouver Whitecaps tonight at StubHub Center in Carson

The Galaxy are leaking goals all of a sudden, while Vancouver is having trouble scoring. The Whitecaps have switched out Torrance for Long Beach in an attempt to change their fortunes in Southern California.

Phil Collin has the game basics.

Last place Chivas USA are in Boston.

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Chivas USA swaps Mauro Rosales for Vancouver’s Nigel Reo-Coker

So, it’s one under-performing highly-paid veteran for another then (the above video was produced by a B.C. newspaper when Nigel Reo-Coker originally joined the WhiteCaps).

Mauro Rosales, 33, (2014 salary $450,000) had zero goals in 16 starts for Chivas USA after joining from the Seattle Sounders at the start of the season; Nigel Reo-Coker, 30, ($446,500) had trouble making the starting XI this season as off field issues wore thin the Whitecaps’ patience.

The former EPL veteran had just one goal in his almost two seasons in Canada.

“Nigel is a fantastic box-to-box player that has proven to be a leader in this league,” said Chivas USA coach Wilmer Cabrera. “He is an unbelievably versatile player. We feel he can help us with his defending as well as going forward in the attack. We see his experience, leadership and great technique helping us in a lot of ways.”

The ‘Caps liked their acquisition, too.

Chivas USA play the Revs in Boston at 4:30 p.m. Saturday live on KDOC (Channel 56); Rosales could play against the Galaxy Saturday in Carson.

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