Robbie Keane (pictured) has scored 34 goals in 55 MLS regular-season games for the LA Galaxy. (Photo: German Alegria)
CARSON, California -- The LA Galaxy kicked off its 2014 itinerary on Friday, when the squad reported for preseason training as the club enters its 19th season of play.
The four-time Major League Soccer champion is priming for its season opener against Real Salt Lake on March 8 and the first leg of its CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal series with Club Tijuana four days later. Both matches will be played at StubHub Center.
Of the 31 players that were on the Galaxy roster at the end of the 2013 MLS season, 23 are scheduled to return to the club for the upcoming campaign. The eight players that have left the club or were not offered new contracts are Colin Clark, Laurent Courtois, Carlo Cudicini, Sean Franklin, Hector Jimenez, Pablo Mastroeni, Michael Stephens, and Jose Villarreal, who will spend the 2014 campaign on loan to Mexico’s Cruz Azul.
Additions to the roster are Brazilian forward Samuel, who signed on a year-long loan from Brazilian side Fluminense; Canadian forward Rob Friend, who signed from German club TSV 1860 Munich; and midfielder Baggio Husidic, who arrived from Sweden’s Hammarby. The trio of new signings will be joined by University of New Mexico defender Kyle Venter, who was drafted in the second round of the MLS SuperDraft.
LA will host Armenian side Shirak FC in a friendly on February 8.