Sports Now

Sports news from Los Angeles and beyond

Category: Landon Donovan

Galaxy's Donovan heading back to Everton


Galaxy captain Landon Donovan is heading back to the English Premier League next month, on a two-month loan to Everton.

Donovan also played for Everton in 2010, appearing in 13 games and scoring twice. He will be eligible to play his first match with the team Jan. 4 against Bolton Wanderers 4 and will remain with the club through its Feb. 25 game against Liverpool before rejoining the Galaxy.'

Donovan played in 34 of the Galaxy's 46 games this season, missing six because of injury and five others to his duties with the U.S. national team. That's an average of more than a game a week between the opening of the Major League Soccer season in March and the Galaxy's victory in the MLS Cup final in November.

Nevertheless, the 29-year-old midfielder called the chance to rejoin Everton "too good to pass up."

Donovan led the Galaxy in scoring with 16 goals in MLS and CONCACAF Champions League play. His last score came in the Cup final and accounted for the only goal in the Galaxy's 1-0 win over the Houston Dynamo. Donovan was named MVP of that game and also made the MLS Best XI for the fourth consecutive year.

"This is a great opportunity for Landon," Galaxy Coach and General Manager Bruce Arena said in a statement. "During the final months of the 2011 season he was limited because of an ongoing injury and he just started to get his legs back during the playoffs. Therefore I think his opportunity with Everton comes at a perfect time as he is relaxed and ready to go."

The coming year figures to be another busy one for Dononvan with the Galaxy resuming both Champions League and MLS play in March and the U.S. national team resuming World Cup qualifying in June.

Striker Robbie Keane, whom the Galaxy acquired in August, has also been the subject of loan requests but the Irish national team star has said he has no desire to play in Europe this winter, preferring to rest and recuperate from a series of injuries that limited his playing time n MLS.


Bill Dwyre: Clippers shed bumbling label by landing Chris Paul

Ranking the bowl games, from a viewing perspective

Helene Elliott: Runner Lopez Lomong's banner achievement

-- Kevin Baxter

Photo: Landon Donovan. Credit: Bret Hartman / Associated Press.

Four Galaxy players named to MLS' First XI all-star team

The Galaxy placed four players on Major League Soccer's First XI -- the league's postseason all-star team -- MLS Commissioner Don Garber said Thursday.

Defenders Omar Gonzalez and Todd Dunivant and midfielders Landon Donovan and David Beckman were among those selected in a vote of coaches, general managers, players and the media.

No other team had more than one player selected.

Earlier this week Gonzalez was named the league's Defender of the Year and Beckham, who was second in the MLS in assists, was named a finalist for Comeback Player of the Year.

For Donovan, who led the Galaxy with 12 goals, the selction was his fourth in as many years and his fifth overall. Gonzalez is a repeat honoree while Dunivant and Beckham were first-time picks.

The team:

G -- Kasey Keller (Seattle); D -- Omar Gonzalez (Galaxy), Todd Dunivant (Galaxy), Jamison Olave (Salt Lake); M -- Landon Donovan (Galaxy), David Beckman (Galaxy),  Mark Shea (Dallas), Brad Davis (Houston), Dwayne De Rosario (DC United); F -- Thierry Henry (New York), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose).

Galaxy's Landon Donovan pulls out of U.S. team exhibition


Galaxy captain Landon Donovan has withdrawn from the U.S. national team and its scheduled friendly Friday in Paris to remain in Southern California to prepare for the Nov. 20 MLS Cup against the Houston Dynamo.

Donovan was scheduled to leave for France on Monday morning, hours after the Galaxy beat Real Salt Lake in the Western Conference final, which earned the team a berth in the Cup final. But Donovan, who missed the last three regular-season games with a leg injury, phoned U.S. national team Coach Jurgen Klinsmann and asked to be excused.

Because the U.S. match with France and another four days later with Slovenia are taking place on international FIFA fixture dates, Klinsmann could have asked for Donovan to be sanctioned for failing to play with the national team.

"The plan was to have Landon come in for the match against France and then return to the L.A. Galaxy in preparation for MLS Cup. But after further discussion, Landon expressed his desire to stay in Los Angeles," Klinsmann said. "While my preference was to have Landon with us for this important match, I respect his decision. I'm very happy with the progress this team is making and the commitment they have shown in each and every camp. We look forward to the challenge of the next two games."

>Two other Galaxy players will be competing internationally between now and the Cup final. Forward Robbie Keane will be with Ireland for its two-match  European Championships qualifying playoff while midfielder Chris Birchall will play for Trinidad and Tobago against Guyana in CONCACAF World Cup qualifying Friday and Nov. 15.

-- Kevin Baxter

Photo: Galaxy star Landon Donovan and Coach Bruce Arena hoist the MLS Western Conference championship trophy after defeating Real Salt Lake, 3-1, on Sunday. Credit: Stephen Dunn / Getty Images

Landon Donovan joins U.S. team that has games during MLS playoffs

The Galaxy's push for the Major League Soccer Cup might have hit a small bump in the road Thursday when U.S. national team Coach Jurgen Klinsmann named Landon Donovan to his 22-man team for a pair of friendlies in Europe beginning next week.

For Donovan, who is coming off a leg injury, that will make for a challenging schedule beginning with Thursday night's playoff match with the New York Red Bulls at the Home Depot Center. If the Galaxy win the two-leg playoff series with New York -- and since they lead 1-0 after Sunday's win, to advance the Galaxy must simply avoid losing by two or more goals -- Donovan will play Sunday in the conference final.

[Updated 1:45 p.m.:]

The U.S. team is scheduled to gather in Paris on Monday, ahead of matches with France on Nov. 11 and Slovenia Nov. 15. The MLS Cup final will be played at the Home Depot Center on Nov. 20.
Galaxy Coach Bruce Arena was hoping that Klinsmann would avoid calling up players involved in the MLS playoffs -- and he largely did, selecting only Donovan and Real Salt Lake defender Kyle Beckerman on MLS teams that are still playing. And Klinsman said that whichever player's team makes the MLS Cup final will be allowed to leave the national team after the France friendly to return to his MLS team a week before the final.
"We have a very positive line of communication with MLS," Klinsman said. "We agreed that whoever will be involved in the final will be released after the game against France, which gives them more than a week to prepare.”


GOALKEEPERS (2): Bill Hamid (D.C. United), Tim Howard (Everton)

DEFENDERS (7): Carlos Bocanegra (Rangers), Timmy Chandler (Nürnberg), Steve Cherundolo (Hannover 96), Clarence Goodson (Brondby), Alfredo Morales (Hertha Berlin), Michael Orozco Fiscal (San Luis), Oguchi Onyewu (Sporting Lisbon)

MIDFIELDERS (9): Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Michael Bradley (Chievo Verona), Clint Dempsey (Fulham), Maurice Edu (Rangers), Fabian Johnson (Hoffenheim), Jermaine Jones (Schalke 04), Robbie Rogers (Columbus Crew), Brek Shea (FC Dallas), Danny Williams (Hoffenheim)

FORWARDS (4): Jozy Altidore (AZ Alkmaar), DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla), Edson Buddle (Ingolstadt), Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy)


Landon Donovan and Galaxy not angry at Red Bulls

MLS-best Galaxy succeed in relative obscurity despite Beckham

-- Kevin Baxter

Photo: Landon Donovan. Credit: Joe Nicholson / US Presswire

Galaxy leaves Donovan home with strained quadriceps

With a win Tuesday over the New York Red Bulls, the Galaxy will clinch home-field advantage throughout the MLS playoffs. But it will have to earn that without captain and leading scorer Landon Donovan, who didn't make the trip after sustaining what team officials are calling a "mild right quad strain" in Saturday's win over Real Salt Lake.

Donovan was the focus of a physical Real Salt Lake defense, which repeatedly knocked him to the turf -- and eventually knocked him out of the game when Donovan had to be helped from the pitch in the final minute of regulation time.

Donovan, who helped set up the game-winning score in the Galaxy's 2-1 win, is tied for the Western Conference lead with 12 goals. Team officials said Monday he was left back in Los Angeles to have his leg treated and evaluated. After Tuesday, the Galaxy don't play again until Oct. 16.

The Galaxy will also be without midfielder Chris Birchall and forward Mike Magee, who also stayed home with injuries, while forward Robbie Keane reported to the Irish national team ahead of its upcoming international fixture.

Tuesday's match was originally scheduled for late August but was postponed by Hurricane Irene. As a result, the Galaxy will be playing its ninth match in 30 days -- a difficult schedule that may have played a role in Donovan's injury.  But it hasn't hurt the Galaxy much on the scoreboard since it hasn't lost an MLS match in more than two months.

With a win Tuesday the Galaxy will clinch the league's best record, winning the Supporter's Shield for the second consecutive season. That will also assure it of home-field advantage throughout the postseason --  a plum reward for the Galaxy, which has yet to lose at the Home Depot Center.

-- Kevin Baxter

Landon Donovan on U.S. loss to Costa Rica


Landon Donovan put Friday’s 1-0 loss to Costa Rica in proper perspective, addressing the immediate ramifications for the U.S. men’s national soccer team.

Still, he managed to take aim at the bigger picture.

“Sometimes this game is cruel,” Donovan said. “I don’t think we deserved to lose the game. At a minimum, we probably deserved to tie the game. When you’re not good in front of the goal and you make mistakes defensively, that can happen.

“We were still in a fine position to get something out of that game. Unfortunately we fell asleep on one play and they made us pay. We did a good job in possession. We did a good job moving the ball. We probably weren’t quite dangerous enough and didn’t get enough pressure on their goalie."

Donovan felt that the team tired near the end of the game, a byproduct of difficult travel (for some) and intense training sessions this week under a new coaching staff.

"I think there’s no question tonight is going to benefit us," he said. "There’s a lot to learn from tonight. A lot of our young players will now see you can dominate a team, dominate possession and have the majority of the ball and still lose."


U.S. falls to Costa Rica, 1-0, in exhibition game

Landon Donovan is an exception to the rule

It's Juergen Klinsmann's turn to be teacher

--Lisa Dillman

Photo: U.S. midfielder Landon Donovan sends the ball into the box on a set play against Costa Rica on Friday night at Home Depot Center. Credit: Jake Roth / US Presswire

Real Madrid in town to face Beckham, Donovan and the Galaxy

For the second consecutive summer, Real Madrid Coach Jose Mourinho brought his club to Los Angeles for its preseason training. Real Madrid's first preseason friendly will be Saturday against the Galaxy, and Mourinho said he expects a competitive atmosphere in the Coliseum.

"It is exactly what we need, and it is exactly what we want," he said Tuesday. "I don't like preseason matches to end 10 to nil. ... I like serious matches, and [the Galaxy] always gives me that.

"The level of teams in the tournament gives us exactly what we need: difficult matches against difficult teams that are on a different level than us because they are in the middle of their season."

Mourinho brought a roster filled with stars to the United States, including forward Cristiano Ronaldo, midfielder Kaka, defender Sergio Ramos and goalkeeper Iker Casillas, and he said American fans would see them all.

"Of course, it's not a priority, but everybody wants to win. Everybody tries to win every single match and every single tournament," he said. "My team will not be at the top because we just started training today, but my promise is all my players are going to play."

Galaxy midfielder David Beckham played for Real Madrid from 2003 to 2007, immediately prior to coming to Los Angeles. He did not play in the friendly last summer because he was on loan to Inter Milan.

"To be facing Real Madrid for the first time, actually, since I left, it's emotional because you get attached to a club," Beckham said. "It's a great occasion for everybody in America and the world to be able to watch the likes of Cristiano and Iker.”

While Beckham and the members of Real Madrid trumpeted the game's purpose, Galaxy forward Landon Donovan admitted his club knows where this game stands in the greater scheme.

"For us, as exciting as it is, our important games are our league games or tomorrow's Open Cup game or our Champions League game coming later in the year," he said.

-- Douglas Farmer

Landon Donovan back but David Beckham not for Galaxy

Landon1 The Galaxy will welcome back one superstar this holiday weekend but probably still will be without David Beckham because of injury.

Forward Landon Donovan, the team’s leading goal-scorer with eight, returned to practice this week after a month away on international duty.

“It’s great to see all the faces again, to train with these guys again, and I’m excited to play again,” Donovan said. “This is my team and my teammates. Every time I go away and come back, they expect the same, [Galaxy Coach] Bruce [Arena] expects the same, and I expect the same.”

Beckham, the team’s leader in assists with seven, probably will not join Donovan on the field Monday against the Seattle Sounders. A back injury has kept Beckham out of the team’s last two MLS games. He described the injury as a “slight stress fracture in the spine.”

“The pain 10 days ago was bad,” Beckham said. “I hate missing games and I hate missing training, so it’s been a miserable couple of weeks.”

Continue reading »

David Beckham likely to miss Galaxy's game against Houston to take another trip to England

Lkv3f6nc Unlike Landon Donovan, who is going nowhere, David Beckham appears to be off on his travels once again.

Reports out of England reveal that the Galaxy midfielder will miss the team's match against the Houston Dynamo in Carson on Wednesday in order to take part in a testimonial game for his retiring former Manchester United teammate and close friend Gary Neville.

Beckham will play alongside a host of other Manchester United veterans in a game against Juventus on Tuesday night at the English Premier League team's Old Trafford stadium. He will then fly directly to Boston to join up with the Galaxy for next Saturday's match against the New England Revolution.

The Galaxy would neither confirm nor deny the reports on Thursday, with Coach Bruce Arena saying only that a decision would be made after Saturday night's game against Chivas USA.

Continue reading »

Rumors link Galaxy's Landon Donovan and U.S. teammate Michael Bradley to AS Roma

Ll8naznc Galaxy forward Landon Donovan and Aston Villa midfielder Michael Bradley, both U.S. national team players, reportedly are being targeted as off-season acquisitions by AS Roma of the Italian league.

The Serie A club, currently in sixth place in the league with only one game remaining, recently saw American businessman Thomas DiBenedetto purchase a majority interest in the club. On Wednesday, DiBenedetto appointed Walter Sabatini as the club's sporting director.

DiBenedetto, based in Boston, reportedly already has employed Sabatini, a former Roma player, to "reach out" to the agents for Donovan, 29, and Bradley, 23, and has set aside $14 million to acquire the Galaxy player, the Boston Globe reported, quoting unnamed sources.

Donovan is under contract to Major League Soccer, as are all its players, and earns $2.3 million a year. AS Roma supposedly is willing to match that salary, but whether Donovan would be interested in moving to Italy or whether MLS would accept as little as $14 million for its marquee American player is debatable.

Continue reading »

Manchester City coach confirms interest in Galaxy's Landon Donovan

Donovan_150 With his performance on the U.S. team at the World Cup earlier this summer, Landon Donovan is sure to have caught the attention of soccer fans everywhere.

Add Manchester City Coach Roberto Mancini to the list.

In the U.S. for friendlies against Sporting Lisbon and the New York Red Bulls, Mancini indicated that Manchester City might be interested in acquiring Donovan, who is currently under contract to the Galaxy but was loaned to Everton last season.

"Landon Donovan is a good player'" Mancini said in a news conference in New Jersey."It's possible," 

-- Chuck Schilken

Photo: Landon Donovan. Credit: Ned Dishman / Getty Images


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


About the Reporters
Sports Now is written by the entire Sports department of the L.A. Times.

Tweets and retweets from L.A. Times staff writers.



Bleacher Report | Los Angeles

Reader contributions from Times partner Bleacher Report

More on Bleacher Report »

Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists: