A busy day for Southern California soccer fans no matter what team or nation you support.
So let’s dig in starting with the highlights of the U.S. men’s win over Honduras:
It wasn’t a vintage performance by the U.S. men Tuesday night, but it was enough to see off Honduras, solidify the American position atop the group and all but qualify for the World Cup. Coach Jurgen Klinsmann may have said it best in this game story from sister newspaper The Salt Lake City Tribune: “The big picture is that we are growing,” he said. Quite.
*Could you see this one coming? I guess it’s the obvious end game of Chivas USA’s renewed philosophy on its Mexican heritage in a sense: respected former Anglo U.S. internationals and club youth coaches claim racial discrimination by the club and file a lawsuit.
*The U.S. and the Galaxy’s Omar Gonzalez got stomped by Belgium tonight, but coach Jurgen Klinsmann sounded positively upbeat: “I would rather play Belgium 10 more times than El Salvador 100 times because that is when you learn,” he said. School is in here.
*The LA Galaxy reserves lost tonight, too, in the U.S. Open Cup to the same minor league team that have ousted them before although I’m guessing the absent Bruce Arena doesn’t really care now that he won’t have to worry about midweek distractions and the annoyance of playing Chivas USA in the next round. Come to think of it, that applies to me, too. Game story here.
*Much rumored, but unseen Galaxy midfielder Frank Lampard scored for England to draw 1-1 with actual and oft-seen Ireland-led Galaxy striker Robbie Keane subbed out disappointingly relatively early on. Game story.
*The Galaxy announced today that the first-ever soccer games played at 51-year-old Dodger Stadium are set for Aug. 3 when Real Madrid plays either Everton or Juventus in a doubleheader with the Galaxy, which will take on one of those two latter teams in the second game of the night. The four teams are part of the west region of the previously announced Guinness International Champions Cup.
From the press release: Dodger Stadium has seen many legendary baseball moments through the years, while hosting more than 147 million fans since it opened its doors. Dodger Stadium has also played host to events such as the 1984 Olympic Games baseball competition, the 2009 World Baseball Classic Final, a Mass conducted by Pope John Paul II, concerts by the biggest names in the business like The Beatles, Michael Jackson and U2 as well as a basketball game and championship boxing match. These will be the first professional soccer games played and come January, 2014, the stadium will host its first National Hockey League game between the Kings and Ducks.
Here’s the Seattle Sounders perspective on the possible debut tonight of new Galaxy midfielder Robbie Rogers, in a story written before the midfielder received the needed MLS paperwork this morning. More on that and complete coverage and reaction to Rogers’ Saturday signing is here.
The tournament opens July 27 in Europe. Los Angeles is scheduled to host a semifinal the weekend of Aug. 3-4.
Los Angeles-based Fox Soccer will televise 11 of the tournament’s 12 games live, including the Aug. 7 final, in one of its final events before folding after losing EPL and MLS broadcast rights in recent months.
“It is an honor for the Galaxy to be able to represent Major League Soccer against some of the world’s top clubs in the inaugural Guinness International Champions Cup,” Galaxy President Chris Klein said, “Our fans are accustomed to seeing their team take on the world’s elite club teams in summer friendlies and we are excited to be able to continue that tradition here in the Southern California as well as in other cities throughout the United States.”
Sports Illustrated’s Grant Wahl has the heartwarming story of a Southern California man whose special relationship with Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho was cultivated over years of volunteering with the world famous club during its now annual training camps at UCLA.
Harbor Gateway-based AYSO will sponsor the city of Torrance’s Rose Float entry after raising $100,000.
Want to ask Galaxy officials why after 10 years Home Depot Center still sports a “jumbo” screen smaller than those most of us have at home? Or why after a decade concession lines and parking jams are still common and often caused by HDC employees and/or practices? Me too. You have your chance at 1 p.m. Thursday when Galaxy President Chris Klein and coach Bruce Arena take questions on line and via Twitter. Details here.
Some Canadian guy named Steve Nash who purports to play basketball with the Lakers (ahem) announced his annual “break a leg” charitable soccer event is coming to LA. this July. Details here.
Former Galaxy and Chivas USA midfielder Alejandro Moreno has joined ESPN as a soccer analyst. His duties include Mexican national team and Liga MX games on ESPN’s English-language television channels.
The slew of forthcoming international fixtures gets off to a good start Thursday when BeIn Sport hosts Brazil verses Italy. Kickoff is at 12:25 p.m.
(Updated) Chivas USA and the mothership played to a 3-3 tie in a friendly Wednesday. Highlights.