Fox Sports soccer analyst Brian McBride breaks down what he expects to see from the U.S. team in its 2014 opener Saturday in Carson against South Korea in this week’s column.
U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann has more on the annual January camp here.
MLS released its 2014 schedule today, the earliest I can recall the league getting organized so we can plan our calendars.
No obvious 2014 vroad trips for Galaxy or Chivas USA fans, however.
The Galaxy schedule is here.
The Chivas USA schedule is here.
And against this backdrop is this week’s column.
The likely Southern California debut of Clint Dempsey. A visit by the No. 1 team in the Western Conference coached by a South Bay favorite son. The Galaxy season on the line.
Regular season MLS games don’t get much bigger or more significant.
Read more about this Saturday’s showdown in Carson in this week’s column.
Will Landon Donovan stay in MLS or go?
What does the future hold for deposed Galaxy starting goalkeeper Carlo Cudicini?
And are the Galaxy poised yet again too peak at exactly the right time of the MLS season?
All that and more in this week’s column.
*As if on cue, Sports Illustrated is reporting this morning we now have the answers to those questions and the Galaxy are reportedly set to announce a new contract for Donovan on Wednesday.
That’s a little sooner than I anticipated, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was a relatively short-term deal through next year’s World Cup that still allows Donovan to keep his post-tournament options open.
What do you think of the new Donovan deal and its implications for the national team?
**The Galaxy confirmed this morning that the club will “make a major announcement regarding the future of forward Landon Donovan” at a noon Wednesday press conference.
It figures in a column about the Galaxy’s visibility among general sports fans in Southern California, the piece would go AWOL — on our own web sites (and we’re still awaiting the return of the dedicated soccer page on our websites since a radical redesign last week, in case you were wondering, BTW).
Still, you can belatedly read the column online as the Galaxy embarks on their final 10-game MLS stretch as well as the start of the CONCACAF Champions League tonight in Carson here.
Incidentally, regular Galaxy sellouts at home may be a thing of the past in Carson, but not elsewhere.
The Vancouver Whitecaps announced today that fewer than 1,000 tickets remain for Saturday’s game against the Galaxy.
MLS parity is forgiving.
While the inconsistent Galaxy currently occupy the fifth and final Western Conference playoff spot, they are also only three points out of second spot.
Still, given their current form, explored in today’s column, who knows what their chances are of seeing those heights again.
Read more in today’s column, which also includes a brief preview of today’s U.S. Gold Cup game.
Our sister newspaper The Denver Post has more on Mexico’s Gold Cup campaign.
Also: will this former Chivas USA import catch on with the Galaxy?
One clarification to the column about who the U.S. will face in the quarterfinals, according to U.S. Soccer:
The United States needs only a draw to secure a first-place finish in the group, which would mean a match against the third-place team from either Group A or Group B in the quarterfinal.