23
Jul

New blood: Shaw, Herrera open up about Manchester United’s plans

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Luke Shaw (L) and Ander Herrera (C) will hope to play key roles in Louis van Gaal’s plans at Manchester United this season (Photo: Getty Images).

Manchester United’s year of redemption begins on Wednesday night as they kick off their preseason against the Los Angeles Galaxy at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena (live, FOX Sports 1, 10:30 p.m. ET).

After the disastrous 2013-14 campaign, wherein the then-defending champions slumped to seventh place in the Barclays Premier League, veteran manager Louis van Gaal has replaced David Moyes and will endeavor to bring the Red Devils back to the top.

Ahead of the match, FOX Soccer caught up with United’s two big summer signings, midfielder Ander Herrera and defender Luke Shaw, in the first one-on-one interviews with each player since their transfers.

First up is Ander Herrera, who came over from Athletic Bilbao:

Leander Schaerlaeckens: Ander, what made you want to join Manchester United?

Ander Herrera: “I am in Manchester United because this is maybe the biggest club in the world. Because Man United have given me the possibility to play at the highest level. I am looking forward to playing here because Louis van Gaal is one of the best coaches in the world.”

LS: Have you spoken to van Gaal? What is he expecting from you?

Ander Herrera: “I think that Louis van Gaal wants that all the midfielders to always want to keep the ball, keep possession, to be an offensive team, always want the ball, never… One moment, I am going to search in Internet! [Pause.] One moment… [Pause.] Hide! Never hide from the ball! Always attack, because he thinks Man United supporters want always to win and be an offensive team.”

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The Red Devils attempted to sign Ander Herrera last summer but failed to complete the deal, with reports suggesting the transfer had been interfered with by pranksters pretending to act United’s behalf (Photo: Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images).

LS: Does he see you more as an attacking midfielder? Or more of a box-to-box guy?

Ander Herrera: “My qualities, my style is offensive. But I think that I can defend as well. I think that if we want to win, to achieve our objectives, we have to defend with all the team, all the players.”

LS: What is the most important thing United have to do this year to compete for the Premier League?

Ander Herrera: “We have to run like a humble team and be compact and work hard to be a good, professional team. I think Man United has a lot of qualities. If you defend hard, after you will be able to play like a big team.”

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12
Jun

Skip work. Watch the World Cup…with Landon Donovan.

While the rest of the world is coming down with “football fever” and using up sick days (or manufacturing them), one person is stuck in the office.

The LA Galaxy have put Landon Donovan to work while the MLS is on World Cup break. 

Take a look at what happens when you leave Donovan alone in Los Angeles during the World Cup.

Nice wallpaper, Landon.

(H/T LA Galaxy. Thanks, guys!)

11
Jun

Awkward. Landon Donovan ad makes poorly timed debut

Not all media moves at the speed of Twitter.

That couldn’t be more clear in the publication of a Landon Donovan/US Soccer-themed public service announcement.

The May 26 print edition of Sports Illustrated featured an ad with Donovan showing a lot of skin and highlighting the unfortunate results of not wearing sunscreen.

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(Image: Yardbarker/Sports Illustrated)

While not technically incorrect, the ad labels the LA Galaxy forward as “Landon Donovan, U.S. Soccer Star.”

Perhaps the tag line is the best/most awkward part. That reads: GET A SUNBURN, AND YOU COULD END UP ON THE SIDELINES.

Oops.

You can’t really blame the Skin Care Foundation for making the educated guess that Donovan would be spending time on some sunny beaches.

They’re just in Los Angeles, not Brazil.

(H/T Rumors And Rants )

26
May

Mike Magee trolls Jurgen Klinsmann’s son with Tweet

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We all remember this, don’t we?

That was the imprudent, maligned Tweet posted - and quickly deleted - by Jurgen Klinsmann’s son Jonathan the day Landon Donovan was cut from the U.S. national team’s World Cup roster.

On Sunday, just three days after the roster snub, Donovan scored two goals against the Philadelphia Union to become Major League Soccer’s all-time leading scorer. Some response! To make the moment even better, reigning MLS MVP Mike Magee of the Chicago Fire couldn’t help but take the opportunity to stand up for his former Galaxy teammate and troll Klinsmann’s son hard at the same time.

Check it out:

Team Donovan 1, Team Klinsmann 0.

h/t FTW

20
Apr

Fore! Galaxy reporter gets hit by ball during live hit

Ah yes, the good ol’ reporter getting hit by a stray ball bit. It never fails to amuse us.

The latest victim? TWC Sportsnet reporter Kelli Tennant, who was struck in the back of the head while giving a live hit ahead of the LA Galaxy’s 2-2 draw against the Vancouver Whitecaps.

A true pro, Tennant didn’t skip a beat and went on with her report as if nothing happened *golf clap*. She must have taken a lesson from Sky Germany reporter Jessica Kastrop, who’s a veteran when it comes to these things. This is probably our favorite one of the bunch, played on loop for optimal viewing pleasure:

Some other folks wouldn’t remain as cool and collected. Right, ‘Arry?

16
Feb

Beckham wants CR7 Miami deal

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Following the confirmation of David Beckham’s new team in Miami, he pledged to bring some of the world’s best stars to USA’s east coast. Well, he could be starting to deliver on his promise already. In Sunday’s newspapers the former LA Galaxy midfielder has been linked with bringing Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo to Miami. 

Other rumors in the tabloids focus on Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney signing a new contract and Robin van Persie potentially rejoining Arsenal.

For these rumors and the rest of Sunday’s transfer gossip, click here.

5
Dec

Mike Magee takes long road to MLS summit as MVP

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – MLS executive vice president, player relations and competition Todd Durbin recalled when he first met Mike Magee 10 years ago. Magee joined the league as a promising U.S. youth international, a player brimming with promise and teeming with the skill to fulfill it. His presence on the stage to accept his first MLS MVP award ensured that point had finally arrived.

Magee traveled a long road to fulfill his potential and produce the sort of season (32 games, 21 goals, four assists) worth of this award. He functioned in the shadows behind brighter stars. He revealed his class in fits and starts without pulling everything together. He survived the doubts created by a knee injury seven years ago to commence his ascent toward the top of the league.

 

“Coming back from that was a lot harder than I thought,” Magee said. “The rehab took a big toll mentally and physically. I had set such a high standard for myself. I tried playing for a long time, but I realized my body wasn’t allowing me to do what I wanted to do. There were some dark times. Waking up, I couldn’t think of anything else I’d rather do. I just stuck with it. Obviously, it’s paying off.”

Magee emerged as a key figure for LA Galaxy over the past few seasons and played a considerable role in the club’s titles in 2011 and 2012. He filled any gap in Bruce Arena’s lineup and provided the flexibility to tailor the team to fit the task on the day. His contributions often went overlooked in a team with David Beckham, Landon Donovan and Robbie Keane, but they were essential to the Galaxy’s success.

His complementary role with the Galaxy transformed into a star turn when he returned to his native Chicago in a high-profile swap for the rights to Robbie Rogers back in May. It took less than a day to figure out how much his professional life had changed. He planned to ask Fire coach Frank Klopas about playing forward more regularly after featuring mostly in the wide areas with the Galaxy. Klopas didn’t give him the chance: the ex-Fire boss asked him where he wanted to play during his first training session with the team.

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It proved a wise decision for both club and player. Magee continued to exploit the gaps he located with the Galaxy and polished off the service provided by Dilly Duka, Joel Lindpere and Patrick Nyarko. He grasped the opportunity with both hands on and off the field. And his exploits proved impressive enough to hold off former Galaxy teammate Keane and Montreal striker Marco Di Vaio for his first major honor.

“From the time I got there until now, it’s been absolutely amazing,” Magee said. “I think I’ve had a lot more seasons where there have been more ups and downs, but this year, it just seemed like it kept getting better from a soccer standpoint and a life standpoint.”

Magee hopes the progress will continue into next season. He cherishes the opportunity to play in front of his family and his friends. He harbors hopes of transitioning into the U.S. national team setup (Jurgen Klinsmann hasn’t made contact yet, he said). He wants to help the Fire return to the playoffs under new boss Frank Yallop.

There is plenty still left to do, but the discussions about his ability to meet his potential are done and dusted. The trophy now in his hands proves it.

(Images: US Presswire)

1
Dec

Cole the latest Chelsea star linked with Major League Soccer

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Jermain Defoe’s protracted move to Toronto seems to be the continuation of a new trend in soccer transfers - with players being linked to moves between the Premier League and MLS almost constantly.

LA Galaxy stars Landon Donovan and Robbie Keane have recently been linked to loan moves to the so-called ‘biggest league in the world’, as has Seattle Sounders midfielder Clint Dempsey.

This next rumor is a biggy, though. According to one of the Sunday newspapers over in the UK, Champions League winner and England and Chelsea star Ashley Cole is being eyed up by two MLS sides for a summer switch.

Find out who and take a look at the rest of the day’s rumors in today’s Paper Chase.