Video: Fox Sports 1 to air USWNT games live from Algarve Cup with opener set for 11 a.m. Wednesday against Norway

Quotable:

“This tournament is a great tune-up for the world’s best teams as the Women’s World Cup approaches,” said FIFA World Cup on FOX executive producer David Neal. “Six of the world’s top-10 ranked teams are in this year’s Algarve Cup, and we’re excited to showcase them and deliver our viewers more important women’s soccer.”

More on the tournament from US Soccer is here.

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Weekly soccer column: MLS expansion, new TV rights deal and new DP’s herald 20th season

Assuming there is no player strike, MLS will kick off its 20th season in Southern California Friday at StubHub Center when the Galaxy plays the Chicago Fire.

Read more on the new MLS season in this week’s 100 Percent Soccer column, which you can read online now and in print across the Los Angeles Newspaper Group on Thursdays instead of Tuesdays from now on.

And just to get you in an MLS mood, check out the videos below.

While I don’t yet see a Chicago Fire MLS season preview, check out the higlights of the Fire’s pre-season friendly last weekend against the Vancouver Whitecaps:

Notable: The Fire finished pre-season unbeaten at 1-0-4, including a scoreless draw against Norwich City and a 1-0 win against Queens Park Rangers during a tour of England.

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Video Preview with Jurgen Klinsmann and Clint Dempsey of the Chile-U.S. friendly live at 3 p.m. today on Fox Sports 1 and UniMas

Notable: Eight players on the rosater are seeking their first U.S. cap: Steve Birnbaum, Matt Hedges, Jon Kempin, Perry Kitchen, Shane O’Neill, Dillon Serna, Wil Trapp and LA Galaxy striker Gyasi Zardes.

At the other end of the spectrum, nine players on the roster were on the USMNT World cup squad last year: Jozy Altidore, Matt Besler, Michael Bradley, Clint Dempsey, Mix Diskerud, Jermaine Jones, Nick Rimando, Chris Wondolowski and DeAndre Yedlin

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Video: Major League Soccer renames MVP Award after Galaxy star Landon Donovan

LDMVP

Despite retiring at the end of last season after 14 years in MLS, Landon Donovan’s name will live on after the league today unveiled its new Landon Donovan MVP Award.

“Landon Donovan’s commitment to growing the game in North America is unrivaled and his contributions to Major League Soccer are immeasurable,” said Commissioner Don Garber. “When he joined MLS in 2001, he showed other American players that this was his ‘League of Choice.’ His legacy will be forever etched in our league’s history, and we appreciate everything he has accomplished, both on and off the field.”

The Southern California native, the all-time leader in MLS goals and assists, said he was “extremely humbled” by the gesture:

“As a child, soccer was merely an outlet for me — a way to express myself,” said Donovan. “To have this prestigious award named after me is truly unimaginable.

Check out the full ceremony:

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LA Galaxy duo Gyasi Zardes of Hawthorne and Angeleno Oscar Sorto named to annual U.S. National Team camp in Carson

The 28-player roster contains the usual mix of veterans (Clint Dempsey, Chris Wondolowski), youngsters (Hawthorne’s Gyasi Zardes and Galaxy defender Oscar Sorto) and even some players veteran journalists have never heard of (but there’s no room for Galaxy left back Robbie Rogers or Omar Gonzalez for that matter).

The camp runs Monday through Feb. 8 at StubHub Center and culminates with a Feb. 8 friendly against Panama in Carson (more than 10,000 tickets sold already U.S. Soccer reported today). In between the team will head to Chile for a Jan. 28 friendly.

Quotable:

“The prize in 2015 for the senior National Team is the Gold Cup, and this camp will give a lot of our players a chance to kick start their preparations for an important year,” said coach Jurgen Klinsmann. “We also get an opportunity to introduce the next wave of young players into the program, and in particular work with many of our Olympic-age guys as they build toward qualifying for the 2016 Olympics in Rio.”

Notable: Zardes, 23, scored 16 goals during the 2014 MLS regular season.

Here’s the full roster:

goalkeepers – Alex Bono (unattached), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire), Jon Kempin (Sporting Kansas City), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake).

defenders — Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), Steve Birnbaum (D.C. United), Christian Dean (Vancouver Whitecaps FC), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders FC), Jermaine Jones (New England Revolution), Perry Kitchen (D.C. United), Shane O’Neill (Colorado Rapids), Oscar Sorto (LA Galaxy)

Midfielders – Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Mix Diskerud (out of contract), Dennis Flores (Club Leon), Luis Gil (Real Salt Lake), Miguel Ibarra (Minnesota United FC), Lee Nguyen (New England Revolution), Marc Pelosi (Liverpool FC), Dillon Serna (Colorado Rapids), Brek Shea (Orlando City SC), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew)

forwards – Tesho Akindele (FC Dallas), Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders FC), Julio Morales (Tepic), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes), Bobby Wood (1860 Munich), Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy)

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Watch: New LA Galaxy signing Steven Gerrard speaks about his move to LA — and watch highlights of his 10 best goals

MLS beat writer Phil Collin has more on Gerrard’s signing by the Galaxy.

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Complete 2015 LA Galaxy MLS schedule released with 14 games on national TV

Time to bone up on the lyrics to the Liverpool classic “You’ll Never Walk Alone” for the home opener now that the Galaxy have signed Steven Gerrard and the complete MLS schedule was released today.

MLS has made a massive effort to schedule the vast majority of games on weekends (only three Wednesday Galaxy games in 2015) although the new television rights deal has dictated an increased number of Friday night games.

And although it makes scheduling a road trip to take in more than one away game a lot more challenging (Orlando in June or October in Seattle anyone?), MLS has also attempted to alternate home and away games in an apparent effort to get fans in the routine of expecting a home game every other week (something this critic has long wanted to boost attendance).

Among the tidbits: 14 games on national TV and the other 20 on local television, expansion team New York City FC visits StubHub Center Sunday, Aug. 23.

Here’s more from the Galaxy news release:

The first California Clasico against San Jose will take place when the Galaxy travel to Stanford Stadium on Saturday, June 27. The Galaxy will host the California Clasico at StubHub Center Friday, July 17 before the third and final matchup will take place at San Jose’s new Avaya Stadium Friday, Aug. 28, with both matches shown live on Univision. The Galaxy are 28-18-12 all-time against their Northern California rivals in regular season matches.

The club’s annual Fourth of July game features a match against Toronto at StubHub Center, marking the 20th consecutive season that the Galaxy will host a game on Independence Day, the longest such stretch in American professional sports.

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An English icon arrives in MLS: LA Galaxy confirm signing of Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard

So a Liverpool icon “replaces” a former Evertonian in the Galaxy starting XI.

Tell us what you think about the Galaxy signing Steven Gerrard in this poll.

Oh, and on Monday the Galaxy announced the club had re-signed forward Alan Gordon to a new contract.

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