Monday Morning Major League Soccer Wrap: Galaxy fall to worst defeat of season, Chivas USA-Vancouver scoreless at StubHub

Gyasi Zardes’ ninth goal in 10 games kept him on course for a call-up to the annual January USMNT camp, but he couldn’t prevent the Galaxy falling to their worst defeat of the season in Columbus against a Crew team LA made look better than they have most of the year.

The Galaxy also came up with a new excuse for losing — Landon Donovan’s farewell presentation by the Crew at the start of the game:

“It’s going to be happening every time,” Galaxy coach Bruce Arena said. “It certainly looked distracting tonight.”

Meanwhile, Real Salt Lake reclaimed the Western Conference lead Saturday with a win over the Sounders. Standings.

Lastly, here’s how the Chivas USA game broke down by the numbers:
chivascapsmatch

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MLS Weekend Preview: LA Galaxy in Columbus to face Crew, Chivas USA host Vancouver Whitecaps in Carson

Newly-signed Galaxy veteran (if you know what I mean) Alan Gordon and the Galaxy face the Crew in Columbus Saturday at 4:30 p.m. live on Time Warner Cable SportsNet, with the hosts scheduled to make “significant announcement” before the game.

chivascaps

Borja

Meanwhile, lowly Chivas USA have signed Ecuadorian forward Felix Borja, who played three season’s in Mexico with Puebla, on a year-long loan from Ecuador’s LDU Quito.

“We are extremely pleased to add such a gifted, international striker,” said Chivas USA coach Wilmer Cabrera. “Felix’s great experience in some of the other top leagues worldwide will help us not only on the field where we expect him to score and create goals, but also in the locker room where he can help mentor our younger players.”

Borja, 31, played 23 times for his national team and featured at the 2006 World Cup. He also had stints in Germany and Greece.

Also Houston plays Philadelphia at 7:30 tonight on NBCSN, while Real Salt lake and Seattle face off on the same channel at 11:30 a.m. Saturday.

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Long Beach’s Alan Gordon returns to Galaxy from San Jose Earthquakes

You remember this guy, don’t you?

A decade after he was first drafted by the Galaxy and scored just 16 goals in 80 appearances over six years, the Galaxy gave the Earthquakes an unspecified amount of allocation money today to re-acquire forward Alan Gordan.

“Alan is a proven MLS player who adds another scoring threat to our roster,” coach Bruce Arena said.

Optimistic, isn’t he?

Gordon, now 32, scored 23 goals with San Jose and had stints with Toronto and Chivas USA.

More from sister newspaper the San Jose Mercury News is here.

What do you think. Are the Galaxy regressing or progressing with a apparently short-ter signing like this. Guess it’s an admission Rob Friend isn’t exactly working out, huh?

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Major League Soccer Preview: LA Galaxy (9-4-6) hosts San Jose Earthquakes (6-8-5) in Carson at 7:30 p.m. live on NBCSN a day after Landon Donovan’s retirement announcement

DNDonovan

A day after Landon Donovan announced his retirement from the game at year’s end, the Galaxy face the team he started with in MLS before joining the Galaxy to embark on a highlight reel career, the San Jose Earthquakes.

The Earthquakes may sit at the wrong end of the Western Conference standings, but they’re coming off an upset win over division-leading Seattle, boast a modest winning streak and a new DP.

Still, the Galaxy may redouble their efforts to reach another MLS Cup in light of Donovan’s announcement and his desire to go out on a championship-winning note after a career with so many notable moments.

Columnist Jill Painter provides context and perspective on Donovan’s career here.

Finally, the LA Galaxy II (11-7-4, 37 points) faces Arizona United SC (6-11-5, 21 points) at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at StubHub Center. The game will be streamed live at lagalaxy.com.

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Read Landon Donovan’s farewell message to fans as he retires from LA Galaxy and Major League Soccer at season’s end

After careful deliberation and after many conversations with those closest to me, I have decided that this will be my last season as a professional soccer player.

I don’t write these words lightly and this day carries mixed emotions for me. I am sad to leave a profession that has brought me so much joy. I will miss all of the teammates who helped me create so many incredible memories on-the-field, and who I have shared many wonderful experiences with off-the-field. I will miss my coaches, at both the club and national team levels, who have helped me develop throughout my career and helped make me the player I am today. However, after spending half my life as a professional soccer player, I also am excited to begin a new chapter and pursue other opportunities that will challenge me and allow me to grow as a person.

There are so many people I want to thank who have inspired me, guided me and helped me on this incredible journey. I simply could not have accomplished what I did during my playing career without an overwhelming amount of support from my family, my friends and many others. I plan to express my gratitude to everyone in a more detailed manner at a later date; however, for now, I want to single out the fans. You are the lifeblood of this sport and, without you, none of us would be fortunate to call ourselves professional soccer players in MLS.

I feel incredibly blessed and lucky to have played a role in the remarkable growth of MLS and US Soccer during my playing career. And while my career as a player will soon be over, rest assured I will stay connected on many levels to the beautiful game.

As we enter a transformative time for the sport, I will do everything I can to help the continued growth of soccer in the United States. I look forward to making a difference, pursuing my passions and meeting all of you along the way in this next phase of my life.

With gratitude,

Landon

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Major League Soccer All-Star game highlights: Watch the Galaxy’s retiring Landon Donovan score the winning goal in MVP-winning performance in his final season as a soccer player

Take that Jurgen Klinsmann.

Galaxy playmaker Landon Donovan grabbed the biggest mid-season stage in MLS with a star turn in Portland Wednesday
(while Chivas USA striker “Cubo” Torres didn’t have a bad night, either).

Guess we know what that Galaxy press conference is (and is not) about this afternoon:

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MLS-All-Star Game tonight at 6:30 p.m. on ESPN2

Full disclosure; I’m no fan of the artificial MLS All-Star game that frankly is a lot more about marketing than soccer as even Landon Donovan admits:

“I think this year I’m realizing more than ever how important this is,” Donovan said. “When you have the opportunity to promote our game and our league, we want to do it.”

I’m still not convinced a meaningless game like this will convert new fans, but at least the sole LA Galaxy participant sounds excited — for the sponsors. Still, at least soccer-mad Portland sounds up for the event even if the players involved have had little time to prepare.

However, I will follow the lead of selected, but absent Galaxy All-Stars Omar Gonzalez and Robbie Keane and skip the whole thing with an eye on Friday’s Galaxy-San Jose Earthquakes game — just like those missing players from LA.

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