Tuesday, June 6, 2017

LA Galaxy All-Time team


Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

This is my selection of a 25 member all-time team for the club.  The number 25 was chosen because it is the official squad size for the Champions' League.

The Los Angeles Galaxy competes in Major League Soccer (MLS), as a member of the Western Conference of the league. The club began play in 1996 as a charter team in the league. In Major League Soccer, the franchise is one of the league's most-decorated clubs, having won the MLS Cup on five occasions—more than any other club—the Supporters' Shield four times, the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup twice, and the old CONCACAF Champions' Cup in 2000, being one of just two American clubs, along with D.C. United, to win the regional tournament.


MLS Cup 2002

Team
GK: Kevin Hartman (USA)
Nicknamed El Gato (Spanish for "the cat") , he was drafted 29th overall in the 1997 MLS College Draft by Los Angeles Galaxy. He played with them until 2006.  He won two MLS Cups with them and was MLS Goalkeeper of the Year: 1999. He also played with KC Wizards, FC Dallas and NY Red Bulls.  He earned 6 caps with USMNT.

GK: Donovan Ricketts  (Jamaica)
At time of writing, he plays for Tulsa Roughnecks in the United Soccer League. Ricketts played more than 100 games for Bradford City in England, and has more than 100 appearances in Major League Soccer and has twice been named MLS Goalkeeper of the Year. He was also the captain of the Jamaica national football team, earning 100 caps for his country, until his retirement from international football in 2013.  

GK: Jorge Campos (Mexico)
Known for his colorful attire and his stint as a forward for his club team.  He was the most iconic footballer of his generation. He played in two WC Finals(1994 and 1998) and won the 1999 Confederation Cup.  He was capped 130 times.  He played mainly in Mexico, but also in the MLS.

RB: Chris Albright (USA)
Albright played college soccer at the University of Virginia for two years; he was named an All-American in 1999. he was drafted by DC United, but his successes started with LA Galaxy when they converted him into a rightback, where he was into MLS Best XI and won two MLS Cups.  He also played with NY Red Bulls, New England Revolution and Philadelphia Union.  Capped 22 times.  He was an unused sub at the 2006 WC Finals.

RB: Ezra Hendrickson (Saint Vincent and the Grenadines)
Hendrickson played 8 seasons with NY/NJ Metrostars, but seldom saw the field.  In 1997, he joined LA Galaxy, where the club turned him into one of the best defender in the league.  He also played for Dallas Burn, DC United, Chivas USA and Colombus Crew. He played 123 times for his home country.

CB: Robin Fraser (USA)
Fraser played with the Miami Sharks and Colorado Foxes in the American Soccer League before the launch of MLS in 1996.  He was the Los Angeles Galaxy's first selection (fourth overall) in the 1996 MLS Inaugural Player Draft. Fraser played five seasons with Galaxy, and was named to the league's Best XI four times (1996, 1998, 1999, 2000), and was named MLS Defender of the Year in 1999. He later played with Colorado Rapids and Colombus Crew. Earned 27 caps for the USA.
Robin Fraser
CB: Alexi Lalas (USA)
Lalas earned 96 caps.  He earned a cult status after the World Cup Finals in 1994.  He also played in the 1998 WC Finals. Following the 1994 FIFA World Cup, Lalas signed with Italian Serie A club Padova, where he became the first American to play in Serie A in modern history and the most iconic American player of his generation. In 1996, he joined Major League Soccer, where he played with New England Revolution, MetroStars and Kansas City Wizards, but his most successful period was with Los Angeles Galaxy, with whom he won the CONCACAF Champions' Cup, Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup and MLS Cup before retiring in 2002.  

CB: Danny Califf (USA)
Drafted by LA Galaxy in 2000, he quickly established as one of the best defenders in MLS.  With San Jose Earthquakes, he was named to the MLS Best XI in 2005.  he moved aboard playing with Aalborg in the and Midtjylland in Denmark.  He later played for Philadphia Union, Chivas USA and Toronto FC.  Earned 23 caps.  he captained the USMNT once.

CB: Tyrone Marshall (Jamaica)
Marshall was drafted by Colorado Rapids, but was traded Miami Fusion.  In 2001, he joined LA Galaxy, where he made a name winning two MLS Cups.  He also played for Toronto FC and Seattle Sounders.  With Jamaica, He earned 83 caps from 2000-2010 before retiring from international football in January 2010, after appearing versus Canada.

CB: Omar Gonzalez (USA)
A college soccer player for the Maryland Terrapins, he joined the LA Galaxy in the 2009 and went on to play 180 regular season games for them, winning the MLS Cup in 2011, 2013 and 2014. He was named the MLS Rookie of the Year in 2009 and the MLS Defender of the Year in 2011.  He now plays for Pachuca.  Capped over 30 caps at this moment.  He went to Brazil 2014.
Omar Gonzalez
LB: Todd Dunivant (USA) 
Dunivant was selected sixth overall in the 2003 MLS SuperDraft by the San Jose Earthquakes. Dunivant started all thirty of the team's games that year, while scoring one goal and six assists, as the Quakes won the MLS Cup. In 2005, he played every minute for LA Galaxy as they won the MLS Cup and U.S. Open Cup double. Dunivant also played with New York Red Bulls and Toronto FC. He earned 2 caps for the USA.

LB: Greg Vanney (USA) 
He played for the Galaxy from 1996 to 2001, and was consistently one of the best defenders in MLS, leading the Galaxy to three MLS Cup Finals and CONCACAF Champion's Cup Championships, and was also named to the MLS Best XI in both 2000 and 2001 and an MLS All-Star in 2001. After the 2001 season, Vanney transferred to Bastia in France, where Vanney helped lead them to its first appearance in the Coupe de France Final in over 20 years.  He also played for FC Dallas, Colorado Rapids , DC United. Earned 37 caps.  he was on the roster for the 2002 WC Finals, but dropped out because of an injury.
Greg Vanney



DM: Simon Elliott (New Zealand)
He started his career in US playing college soccer.  He played for LA Galaxy, where he won the MLS Cup in 2002 and other clubs in the United States.  He also played for Fulham in England and Wellington Pheonix.  He went to the WC Finals in 2010. 

DM/CM: Danny Pena (USA)
From 1988 to 1997, Pena played for many different teams in different leagues across the United States.  In 1997, he joined LA Galaxy, where he finally made a name.  He played there until 2001. He played a few games with Tampa Bay Mutiny before retiring.  In 1997, he was called up for the USMNT, but he refused to concentrate for his club team.

CM: Peter Vagenas (USA)
Vagenas was drafted by Los Angeles Galaxy in the second round of the 2000 MLS SuperDraft and subsequently spent nine years with the team, winning the U.S. Open Cup in 2001 and 2005, and the MLS Cup in 2002 and 2005, captaining the team to the 2005 double. He later played for Seattle Sounders, Vancouver Whitecaps FC and Chivas USA.  He earned only 3 caps largely due to injuries.

RW: Cobi Jones
After playing college soccer with UCLA,  Jones played with Coventry City and Brazilian side Vasco da Gama before joining the MLS in 1996, where he won two MSL Cups with LA Galaxy.  He won two MLS Cups. Capped 164 times. He is the all-time cap recorder for the USA.  He played in three WC Finals.
Cobi Jones

RW: David Beckham (England)
Beckham is the greatest ever icon to play the game. He started his career with Manchester United where he was a part of the famous team that won the 1992 FA Youth Cup. For the senior side, he won 6 Premiership titles and the 1999 Champions' League.  In 2003, he joined Real Madrid for the well-publicized "Galacticos" signing.  In 2007, he moved to LA Galaxy, where he kickstarted a soccer fever in the United States.  For England, he earned 115 caps and was a key part of the national team throughout his career.
David Beckham
AM/CM: Juninho (Brazil)
Juninho made one appearance for the São Paulo senior side in 2007. He was sent out on loan to Los Angeles Galaxy in 2010. Juninho helped Galaxy win the Supporters' Shield in both 2010 and 2011. He was also a key player in the Galaxy's 2011 MLS Cup championship.  In December 2015, Juninho was sold to Tijuana of Liga MX, but retuned to Chicago Fire.

AM/CM: Mauricio Cienfuegos (El Salvador)
Cienfuegos began his professional career in 1985 with Racing Junior. He also played for Soyapango, and Luís Ángel Firpo in El Salvador,  for Morelia and Santos Laguna in Mexico. He joined LA Galaxy for its inaugural 1996 season, where he stayed until his retirement after the 2003 season. He was elected to the MLS Best XI three times, in 1996, 1998, and 1999, and played in seven MLS All-Star Games. During his MLS career, Galaxy won the 2000 CONCACAF Champions Cup, the 2001 U.S. Open Cup, and the 2002 MLS Cup. Capped 68 times.
Mauricio Cienfuegos 
AM/CM: Giovani dos Santos (Mexico)
Dos Santos is son of Brazilian player playing in the Mexican league.  At one point, he was projected to be the greatest Mexican of his generation. He graduated from Barcelona Academy.  At the time of writing, he has played for Tottenham Hotspurs, Ipswich, Galatasaray, Racing Santander, Mallorca, Villarreal and now, LA Galaxy. Since 2007, he has amassed over a hundred caps for Mexico.

SS/AM: Landon Donovan (USA)
Donovan is perhaps the greatest American player of the modern era.  He is the all-time leading scorer for the NT.  He represented the USA at three WC Finals.  In 2002, he was named the best young player at the WC Finals. He was Honda Player of the Year for 6 times and US Soccer Athlete of the Year for 4 times and numerous awards in MLS.  He had a brief spell with Leverkusen before returning to MLS.  With LA Galaxy, he won four MLS Cup.

Landon Donovan 

ST: Carlos Ruiz (Guatemala)
Ruiz is probably the greatest footballer ever from Guatemala.  A product of CSD Municipal's youth academy, Ruiz has played for five MLS clubs (Los Angeles Galaxy, FC Dallas, Toronto FC, Philadelphia Union, and D.C. United), scoring 88 goals in 182 MLS regular-season matches and 16 goals in the post-season,which is the record for the most post-season goals in MLS history. In 2002, he was named the MLS's Most Valuable Player of the season. He was a member of the Guatemalan national team from 1998 to 2016. He served as the national team captain, is the player with most caps, and is the all-time top scorer. 

Carlos Ruiz
ST: Edson Bundle (USA)
Buddle began his career in 2000 with the Long Island Rough Riders, who played in the A-League at that time. He then spent 2001–2010 in Major League Soccer, playing for the Columbus Crew, New York Red Bulls, Toronto FC, and Los Angeles Galaxy. After a one-year stint with FC Ingolstadt 04 in Germany's 2. Bundesliga he returned to Los Angeles. Buddle has also played for the US national team, including two appearances at the 2010  World Cup.

ST: Eduardo Hurtado (Ecuador)
Hurtado, nicknamed El Tanque ("The Tank") has played for many teams in different countries. His first teams were now defunct Valdez Sporting Club from Milagro and Emelec from Guayaquil, in his native Ecuador, and he also had stops in Switzerland, Chile, Mexico, the United States, Argentina, and Scotland. He later returned to Ecuador. Capped 74 times.

ST: Robbie Keane (Ireland)
Keane is the all-time leading scorer and cap record holder for Ireland.  He went to the WC Finals in 2002, and participated at Eyuro 2012 and 2016.  He had played in Italy, Scotland, England, and the USA. Most of his stints were short, including a dream move to Inter Milan.  His most famous stints was with Tottenham Hotspurs, where he won the League Cup in 2008 and LA Galaxy.
Robbie Keane

Honorable Mention
Jelle Van Damme, Martin Machon, Hong Myung-Bo, Jaime Penedo, Welton, Steven Gerard, Andi Herzong, Jovan Kirovski, Chris Klein, Dan Calichman, Gyasi Zardes, Luis Hernandez, Carlos Hermosillo, Sean Franklin,  Marcelo Sarvas, Mika Magee, A.J. DelaGarza, Herculez Gomez, Gregg Berhalter, .

Squad Explanation
-- I do not know about the goalkeepers, except Kevin Hartman. Joe Cannon only played one season. Donovan Ricketts got the 2nd keeper spot.  I chose Jorge Camps over Matt Reis, Josh Saunders and Jaime Penedo because of his international experience.
-- I brought 5 centerbacks, the most for any of my all-time teams. Alexi Lalas, I admitted, was a question mark.
-- Jelle Van Damme only played one season at the time of writing.
-- Paul Calgiuri was on decline when he played for LA Galaxy.
-- Luis Hernandez and Carlos Hermosillo were a few of the more famous players who played for LA Galaxy, but their impact there were not enough to make the team. I did put them as Honorable Mention.
-- Welton only played a short time at the club.  he was my last play to drop from the Final 25.
-- Denny Pena was an unsung hero during his time with the club.  

Formation
-- David Beckham is the most famous player ever who played for the club, but Cobi Jones is the longest serving player and one of the most decorated player of all-time with them.  Jones started over the former Real Madrid great.







 

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