LA Galaxy captain Robbie Keane underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right knee Thursday. The Irishman is expected to miss four to six weeks.
Despite news of another injury to another Galaxy designated player, Keane seemed to be in good spirits after the operation. He posted a photo on his Instagram account saying he was hopeful for a “speedy recovery” and vowing to come back “stronger” soon.
The Galaxy have been hit hard with injuries in the early going of the season. Along with Keane, Giovani dos Santos (left quad injury), Steven Gerrard (left calf) and goalkeeper Dan Kennedy (groin) are all dealing with injuries.
The Galaxy, without DP’s Keane and Gerrard, will take on the Whitecaps Saturday in Vancouver at BC Place, where Didier Drogba recently refused to play due to concerns over the artificial turf. The club is in third place of the Western Conference standings with six points.
The jersey is little changed from last year, per the Galaxy’s description:
The new Galaxy primary kit will continue the traditional sash featured in previous years while providing a classic update in two contrasting bars of the Galaxy’s primary colors. The bars highlight the team’s new crest, which will be the only team in MLS to feature a single Gold Star, signifying the Galaxy’s record five MLS Cup Championships.
Galaxy players will greet fans at a Supporters’ Happy Hour from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday at the club’s This is LA retail Pop-Up Shop at Blends, 725 S. Los Angeles St. Mike Magee, Jeff Larentowicz, Dan Kennedy and Dan Gargan will be in attendance.
From 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday Robbie Keane, Steven Gerrard and Giovani dos Santos will sign autographs and meet fans at the same location.
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After rumors swirled for months, the L.A. Galaxy officially announced the signing of defender Ashley Cole on Wednesday, adding the 35-year-old to the team’s roster without using a designated player tag or targeted allocation money.
“Ashley is one of the world’s most successful defenders and has played at the highest level of competition throughout his career,” Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena said in a statement. “He can provide our defense with valuable experience. We look forward to his contribution to our club this season.”
Cole, who played for Arsenal from 1999-2006 and Chelsea from 2006-2014, is considered one of the best defenders of his generation, but his star has fallen quickly. The 35-year-old’s contract with A.S. Roma was terminated by mutual consent on Tuesday. Cole joined Roma in 2014 but only made 11 appearances with the club, all coming in his first season. He hadn’t played a competitive game for the Serie A side since March 2015.
The former English international made 107 caps for his country, the most for any full back, and played in three World Cups.
After he was released by Chelsea in 2014, Cole said he received offers from MLS, but turned them down in favor of Roma, telling reporters at the time he was “not ready to relax on a beach yet.”
Cole is the latest veteran to sign with the Galaxy this offseason, as the team also added Belgian defender Jelle Van Damme, 32, goalkeeper Dan Kennedy, 33, midfielder Jeff Larentowicz, 32, and forward Mike Magee, 31.
The LA Galaxy officially announced the long-suspected signing of Belgian defender Jelle Van Damme on Tuesday. The club used targeted allocation money for the signing and Van Damme will take one of the team’s international roster spots.
The Galaxy, who officially started preseason camp last Friday, have also been linked to Ashley Cole, 35, and Nigel de Jong, 31, and have 26 of their 28 roster spots filled for the upcoming season. Cole has already been released from his club Roma, while de Jong is still signed with AC Milan until 2018.
Van Damme joins L.A. after captaining Belgian side Standard Liege, where he made 205 appearances since 2011. Although he has played both left and center back, Van Damme will likely play in the middle for the Galaxy, head coach Bruce Arena told LAGalaxy.com, making the 32-year-old the replacement for Omar Gonzalez in the backline.
“He’s got good experience, he passes the ball well and he’s a leader,” Arena said. “I think that he’s a guy that’s suitable to help us strengthen our backline.”
Van Damme’s career includes stops in four different countries (England, Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands) and 30 international caps for Belgium.
Of the team’s eight off-season signings so far, five have been over the age of 30. In addition to the Van Damme deal, the Galaxy acquired goalkeeper Dan Kennedy, 33, midfielder Jeff Larentowicz, 32, forward Mike Magee, 31, and re-signed 34-year-old forward Alan Gordon.
The team also signed Galaxy II players Clement Diop, 24, and Daniel Steres, 25, to the roster, in addition to a draft-day deal for 21-year-old Emmanuel Boateng. The Galaxy drafted 22-year-old Georgetown defender Josh Turnley, but have not officially signed the third-round pick.
Before starting the MLS season on March 6 against DC United, the Galaxy face Liga MX side Santos Laguna in the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals on Feb. 24 at home and March 1 on the road.