The Seattle Sounders selected Cal State Dominguez Hills All-American Tony Alfaro in Thursday’s MLS SuperDraft with the 27th overall pick.
Alfaro is the first player to be picked in the MLS draft since Kei Kamara went in the 2005 class and the fourth player ever from CSUDH. The left-footed defender played a team-high 1,954 minutes for the Toros this year, starting every match but one. He scored six goals, five coming on penalty kicks.
Alfaro was named a first-team All-American by the NSCAA and a second-team All-American by Division II CCA after his senior season when he was named the California College Athletic Association’s Defensive Player of the Year.
Where’s your video Mr. Zardes?
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— Major League Soccer (@MLS) February 21, 2014
— Major League Soccer (@MLS) February 21, 2014
*The Galaxy also signed Mexican native Raul Mendiola, 19, whose hometown is listed as Torrance on the Galaxy website. More on both players here.
*Chivas USA have reportedly come to terms with English striker Luke Moore. At age 28 he’s in the prime of his career; problem is, that career has stalled as his goals have dried up.
*Meanwhile, UCLA is touting its men’s recruiting class as the nation’s best for the second year in a row.
Took advantage of the long weekend to take a few days off, so let’s play a little MLS draft catch-up.
Chivas USA goalkeeper Dan Kennedy must have put in a good word for former UCSB teammate pick-up Tony Lochhead, 32, a New Zealand international who plays left back and was picked up today by the struggling MLS team from A-League club Wellington Phoenix.
.Lochhead was drafted in 2005 by the New England Revolution, but returned home in 2007 after making 16 appearances for the club. He has made 43 appearances for his national team and is expected to play in this summer’s World Cup.
Chivas USA also made two more additions in the final two rounds of the MLS SuperDraft Tuesday, selecting Houston Baptist University forward Kristopher Tyrpak with the 40th pick and Georgia State University defender Michael Nwiloh 59th.
The latter is a 6-3 center back, the sort of commanding defender Chivas USA needed more of last season.
The Galaxy, which last week had traded away its first round draft pick, passed on its 72nd overall pick — the only MLS club to do so — which tells you everything you need to know about how coach Bruce Arena regarded the talent pool in this year’s draft.
The 32 players selected in the final two rounds included UCLA forward Victor Chavez, selected 71st by the Portland Timbers right before the Galaxy’s scheduled pick (hmm, did Arena want him?).
By the way, UCLA saw a trio of players picked up by MLS teams in this year’s draft including defender and captain Joe Sofia, a second round pick by San Jose, and Spanish native Victor Munoz, drafted by D.C. United in the second round.
That makes 64 picks in the 19-year history of the draft for the Bruins, far and away the most of any school in the nation.
It’s been a busy day for soccer news. Here’s what else has fallen through the cracks lately:
- The Galaxy’s open house from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Sunday is all about selling fans a season ticket, but there’s lots of cool, free stuff going on, too, including a town hall meeting with Galaxy exec Chris Klein and playmaker Landon Donovan, on field coaching clinics and stadium tours. Full details here.
- Former AEG president Tim Leiweke, now trying to resurrect Toronto, has returned to his old stomping grounds and scooped up Galaxy Academy U-14 coach Greg Vanney as assistant general manager and Academy defender, replacing former Chivas USA coach Thomas Rongen in that post.
- U.S. Soccer is asking fans to vote on the best male and female players for the all-time U.S. teams. Details here.
- There’s some big games in the EPL this weekend with the pick of them seeing league leaders Arsenal visiting Manchester City (4 a.m. NBCSN). A complete preview is here.
- UniMás’ broadcast of MLS Cup outdrew ESPN by 14 percent, drawing 514,000 total viewers.
- College seniors with local ties invited to the annual MLS Combine as announced today are UCLA’s Victor Chavez from Fontana and his Bruin teammate midfielder Victor Munoz, who is from Spain.
- Former U.S. captain Carlos Bocanegra is a guest at 12:30 p.m. Friday on Fox Soccer Daily (Fox Sports 1). He will break down the U.S. World Cup draw with former U.S. forwards Brian McBride and Cobi Jones.
A quick roundup of essential soccer links for the day:
- A must-read on the USMNT WCQ on-going meltdown.
- Recall that more than soft Chivas USA red card issued during Sunday’s SuperClasico? It never happened.
- Also, Chivas USA has re-signed back-up goalkeeper Tim Melia, 26, to an unspecified contract extension, the club announced today.
- The Galaxy has named their Dallas Cup roster.
- Former Cal State Northridge soccer standout Devin Del Do, 26, of Valencia has signed a two-year contract with the Tampa Bay Rowdies of the North American Soccer League.
- Mia Hamm’s LA Fest Celebrity Soccer Challenge is set for Sunday at Home Depot Center.
- Modestly, one should note, with Portland and Chivas USA swapping spots in the player allocation rankings, with the Timbers receiving Chivas USA’s second overall spot and the Goats taking the third overall position. Chivas USA will also receive either a 2013 international roster spot or a second-round pick in the 2013 MLS SuperDraft should the Timbers acquire one. Translation: Chivas USA want to load up on international spots ahead of a likely influx of Mexicans, while Portland has a specific player they want to acquire from overseas.
- U.S. international forward Clint Dempsey, was chosen by 183 US journalists as the “212 Player of the Year Award presented by Fútbol de Primera. It’s the third time Dempsey has won the award, which either he or the Galaxy’s Landon Donovan have won ten times in the last eleven years. Dempsey scored six goals in nine U.S. games this year.
- The 54 college seniors invited to the increasingly unimportant MLS Combine next month in Florida include defenders Joe Franco (Cal State Northridge); and midfielders Carlos Alvarez (University of Connecticut) of Los Angeles, Kory Kindle of (California State Bakersfield of Ventura; and Ryan Hollingshead and Fernando Monge (UCLA).
Next up: top-ranked Stanford.
Full details here.