NWSL: Mallory Pugh goes from UCLA to Washington Spirit

U.S. women’s national team forward Mallory Pugh’s UCLA career ended before it officially started.

Wednesday,  Pugh, 19, was officially introduced as a member of the Washington Spirit. She enrolled at UCLA last winter; participated in the spring games and was set to begin her freshman season next fall. Pugh made her international debut last January.

Here is today’s press conference.

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USL: LA Galaxy II bounces back from mid-week loss

Following the Galaxy’s 3-1 victory over the New York Red Bulls, LA Galaxy II (2-5-1, seven points) made it a perfect 2-for-2 with their 2-1 victory over New York Red Bulls II.

After allowing an early goal, Adonis Amaya (49th minute) and Justin Dhillon (72nd) scored the goals for Galaxy II to preserve the victory.

Nathan Smith started in defense for LA Galaxy II. Smith might be back with first team next week with Bradley Diallo getting sent off with two yellow cards in the Galaxy’s 3-1 victory against the Red Bulls.

“I’m really, really happy for the team,” coach Mike Munoz said. “Obviously it’s been a tough couple weeks. We asked for a response, we asked for a reaction. Even going a goal down, the boys fought for 90 minutes and we thoroughly deserved to get the three points today.”

The starting 11 for LA Galaxy II averaged 19.7 years of age.

 

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U.S. Women’s National Team to compete in new tournament this summer

The U.S. Women’s National Team will compete in the Tournament of Nations, July 27-Aug. 3 with two locations in Southern California, including the StubHub Center in Carson.

The U.S will be joined by Brazil, Australia and Japan in the four-team tournament. The U.S. hosted the SheBelieves Cup in March. Japan is ranked sixth in the latest FIFA World Rankings, Australia is eighth and Brazil is ninth.

The format of the Tournament of Nations is the same as the SheBelieves Cup. Four teams will compete in three doubleheader events at the three venues over an eight-day period.

Brazil and Japan will open the tournament, July 27 at CenturyLink Field in Seattle at 4:15 p.m., followed by the U.S. and Australia at 7 p.m.

The teams will head to San Diego’s Qualcomm Stadium, July 30 with Japan facing Australia at 2:15 p.m., with the U.S. and Australia at 5 p.m. The tournament concludes Aug. 3 at StubHub Center with Australia and Brazil kicking off at 4:15 p.m. and the U.S and Japan following at 7 p.m.

The winner of the tournament will be based on total points (three for a win, one for a tie), with the first tie-breaker being overall goal difference, followed by most total tournament goals scored, then head-to-head result and lastly, FIFA Ranking if necessary.

U.S. Soccer plans to host this tournament every summer during years that do not feature at Women’s World Cup or Olympic Games.

“It’s fantastic to play another tournament at home against some of the world’s best teams in a year after the world championship cycle,” U.S. coach Jill Ellis said. “It shows U.S. Soccer’s continuing dedication to growing the women’s game. These are three talented teams that we haven’t played in a while so we’re looking forward to a summer tournament that will be extremely challenging and valuable for our players and entertaining for the fans.”

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ICYMI Humpday Roundup: LA Galaxy, USWNT and more

More bad news for the Galaxy: Another starter bites the dust.

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Orange County Soccer Club gets off on right foot at home

The Orange County Soccer Club played their first game at home this season and had a smashing debut, trouncing LA Galaxy II, 4-0 at the Orange County Great Park of Irvine in the second I-405 Derby.

OCSC (3-1-1, 10 points) will play their home games at the Great Park and will eventually move into a permanent stadium at the same location once it is completed.

Jerry van Ewjik scored a pair of goals and Wulito Fernandes added another for OCSC.

LA Galaxy II (1-4-1, six points) will return to the field Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. against Real Monarchs SLC and then travel to New York to face Red Bulls II, Sunday at 6 p.m.

Orange County SC will be on the road next Saturday at Tulsa Roughnecks FC.

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100 Percent Soccer column: Has the Galaxy’s new-found frugality hurt the club’s MLS results?

The Galaxy is giving away 12,500 retro T-shirts at Saturday’s 7:30 p.m. game against the Chicago Fire at StubHub Center in Carson.

I suspect they’ll be looking for a little of the Galaxy of old if the club hopes to get a crucial victory — and coach Curt Onalfo wants to keep his job.

Read more in this week’s 100 Percent Soccer column.

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Orlando City SC’s Kaka tops MLS salary for 2017

Brazilian and Orlando City SC midfielder Kaka is the highest paid player in Major League Soccer this year, according to information released by the MLS Players Union.

KaKa is set to earn a base salary of $6.66 million with a guaranteed compensation of $7.16 million.

Toronto FC’s Sebastian Giovinco is the second highest paid, earning a base of $5.6 million and guaranteed of $7.12 million.

Toronto FC’s Michael Bradley ($6.5 million), New York City FC’s Andrea Pirlo ($5.9 million) and David Villa ($5.6 million) round out the top five

The Galaxy’s Giovani dos Santos is sixth with a guaranteed compensation of $5.5 million.

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ICYMI: Reaction to a wretched LA Galaxy performance against the Seattle Sounders

Galaxy beat writer Damian Calhoun described Sunday’s pitiful performance by the Galaxy against the previously unimpressive Seattle Sounders as “disappointing“; in contrast, much of the other reaction out there was considerably less charitable.

You can read my take on the LA Galaxy in my 100 Percent Soccer column Thursday.

In the meantime, gnaw on this:

(The shuttle doesn’t operate until after the 90 minutes are up; I left at half time explaining that the game really was over, but no bus was available. A kindly supervisor spared me from watching the rest of the second half though, giving me a ride to my car at Harbor Gateway Transit Center).

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