Discussion in 'LA Galaxy' started by ragbone, Oct 29, 2015.
Well, it's THAT time again.
Zardes probably walks. Its not a huge issue if Bruce really believes in his academy players. Gerrard has to play in a new position, he can't be a midfield anchor. I don't know what can be done about Omar's salary. Bruce sldo has to find a better partner for Juhninho.
Kennedy is a local guy that's on the bench. Hes 33 for the right price I wouldn't mind seeing him.
I would replace Väyrynen with Auras.
I know Bruce like his vets but I with the belief that the last striker position should be youth. I would bring up BJ4
Isn't BJIV already up? He's just had too many head injuries.
To my eyes, there is nobody on Los Dos or the upper levels of the academy that comes close to Gyazi.
As much as I love Omar and have supported him, if it comes down to Omar v. Gyazi, I hold on to Gyazi. Ultimately defenders are more replaceable than someone with Zardes' skills.
When the chips were on the line last night Zardes was our best player. He has exactly the kind of athleticism that we sorely need. Worst thing we could do would be to lose him.
In my experience when you get to the playoffs the athletes often shine their brightest. The game speeds up and there are a lot more physical battles. The stronger, faster win those battles. Like Zardes did all night long in our one playoff game.
You are right. Those concussions derailed him . I hope he can return healthy. I would like to see more of him and a healthy Villarreal
Yep, last night I saw a guy in the mold of Sarvas, Keane, Peña and Donovan; guys who knew what a playoff game meant and how awful it feels to lose one. There was a brief shot of Gyasi after the whistle and he had a look on his face that spoke volumes. I think Zardes is going to have a monster year in 2016, not just in production, but he’s going to take a leadership role on the pitch; he’ll be like Landon though a quiet word, not the shouty type.
I was ok earlier in the year letting Gyasi go for the right price, but not after last night.
I'm with you. We build the team to maximize the effectiveness of Keane and Zardes and that means playing them up top.
Then figure out whether we play Gio outside or in the middle in the midfield (IMO, to maximize the effectiveness of Gio, we play him the middle; to fit him into our "system, we play him outside)
Happy we have this thread to focus on something.
I think you play Gio on the wing and Zardes up top. Gio is a better passer and a better crosser, and he doesn't seem to want to one touch the ball (but maybe that's just because he hasn't adjusted to the other players yet), so on the outside he can get the ball, dribble to the outside or cut inside and deliver a decent ball. Gyasi has the athleticism to get to a ball, and while his holding touch isn't great, his shot has gotten WAY better.
What quality keeper options do we have? You think we are willing to work with Penedo again?
Cut Gerrard and go for Ochoa.
My favorite part of the off-season is getting to play armchair GM/Manager (otherwise I'd cry due to the poor season and just general numbness that comes with an MLS off-season). This is going to be more like rambling so feel free to mentally pick and place what you like/dislike.
We've got good attacking prospects and we did a poor job of getting them integrated this year. Next year we need to see more of Mendiola, BJIV and Villarreal and less (ie none) of Husidic out wide and Buddle.
We've got just so many has-beens and never-wases on the roster that take up roster spots. Guys like Rafael Garcia and Kenney Walker will never be MLS starters and are on the roster as backups at age 26. Together they've got a total of 1,240 MLS minutes (less than 14 full games) between them in their entire careers. They make Meyer (2400 minutes at age 25) look like a seasoned vet by comparison. These guys being on the roster certainly isn't what caused our problems directly but it speaks to a lack of depth options and the sort of blind spot that Bruce has in certain areas. As an MLS team you're going to have to have some kind of driftwood on the back end of your roster but with an eye toward those players on the back end improving or moving out and that ship sailed for several of our players years ago.
I also think this has perhaps been Bruce's worst season as a GM. Our new signings:
Gio - Has more to do with the FO than Bruce
Lletget - A fantastic player at a fantastic price
Too Early to Tell:
Maganto - He's still a rookie but I haven't been impressed by his play and he takes up an INT spot
Wolverton - Wasn't even signed until the weird Trey Mitchell/Pool GK thing ended but not enough minutes to judge
Romney - Seems okay but not enough minutes to judge.
Gerrard - Has more to do with the FO than Bruce
Väyrynen - Was okay at times but in general was disappointing. He ate up a significant chunk of salary sitting the bench.
Buddle - Hot garbage
Ricketts - Hotter garbage
So there were a grand total of two players brought in this season that were positives on the whole and one of them happens regardless of Bruce. Just not a great season from Bruce. We need to acknowledge that.
Looking around the roster, there are only 11 players that I actually want back on the roster in 2016:
Omar Gonzalez - That DP/allocation buy down issue looms large but I still want him back if possible.
Robbie Keane - Obvious.
Giovanni dos Santos - Hasn't integrated that well but is obviously a good player and will benefit from a full season with the team.
Gyasi Zardes - Obvious. Also because he's HG he is in an off-budget spot and his salary is partially subsidized.
Robbie Rogers - Still needs to improve on the defensive side of things but he's a good player at a think position. I think Rogers is out of contract this year and would/should be a free agent.
Sebastian Lletget - Da Boy!
Juninho - As goes Juninho, as goes the team.
A.J. DeLaGarza - Smartest Guamanian I know (yes, I'm including TrickHog)
Bradford Jamieson IV - Please don't let concussions be a thing. Such a talented prospect.
Raúl Mendiola - More minutes, please.
Jose Villarreal - Make a statement for a starting role.
Baggio Husidić: As long as he comes with the caveat that he's not allowed to play on the wing he can stay as depth.
Alan Gordon: He's been clutch but he's on $175k and is 34. On a lower salary he's a nice break if emergency type player but first off the bench needs to be the BJIV/Villarreal/Mendiola types.
Brian Rowe: I suppose he's the incumbent and an okay backup but we need a better keeper.
Ignacio Maganto: Maybe some potential but I would trade him in a heartbeat considering the young options we have at his position
Tommy Meyer: He's 25 now and is good backup for the price but I wouldn't mind trading him but he likely will never be an MLS starter.
Leonardo: Had his best season to date but removing the distraction wouldn't bother me as he doesn't pair well with Omar.
Dave Romney: I suppose I'd like to see him back but I wouldn't care if he wasn't.
Andrew Wolverton: Same as Romney.
Oscar Sorto: Hasn't impressed me and I think his ceiling is low. If we can trade him for something of value, do it, if not I would like to see him back next season to see what he's really made of.
Donovan Ricketts: Why!?
Mika Väyrynen: I hear Finland is nice this time of year.
Steven Gerrard: Just retire. Please. Please!? Do you really want to play in Dallas in July next year? Or Foxboro in March?
Edson Buddle: It's sad to see him such a shell of his former self.
Brian Perk: Unrealized potential because he can't stay healthy. Time to move on.
Rafael Garcia: I like his tenacity but he's just not good enough.
Kenney Walker: He'd be a great NASL signing.
Dan Gargan: You held down the fort admirably last year. At $125k you're not even worth the depth option at this point.
Thanks for your service, Iron Man:
Todd Dunivant: I remember seeing watching him in 2005 and thinking that he'd eventually become the starting USMNT left back. He really shouldn't have been traded in 2006 and spent 10 years as a G. He's a true professional and though he's not been great recently he was an absolute iron man and class act his entire career. I hope he stays with the team in some capacity.
Potential G2 Signings:
Lassiter: Should be a no-brainer to bring up.
Clement Diop: I'm kind of iffy on him. Is capable of amazing stops but prone to shaky moments. Given the turmoil at keeper and defense I'd rather us go with a more proven steady hand (though that may be asking too much). Also an international. Right now I'd say probably a no.
Daniel Steres: USL Second Team of the Year in 2013 and 2014, First Team of the Year in 2015. A potentially viable center back option but I just doubt he'd be worth bringing up at this point. He'll be 25 in November and given our dearth of defensive options in the academy I would like him to stay around in 2016 to anchor the G2 line again. If needed we can loan him up for spot duty if short on players.
We can't even really asses our priorities going into 2016 without figuring out what's going to happen with Omar. If Omar leaves, we obviously need a stud centerback. If he stays, he doesn't pair well with Omar and either need another center back to pair him with or move AJ back in. As much as I don't want Gerrard back, I don't really see him retiring after such a poor half season (not to mention giving up so much money) but we can't afford to play him in a 4-4-2. It's just not an option. Either we go to a 5 man midfield or he has to move on. Offensively, we've got all the pieces we really need if BJIV stays healthy, Villarreal builds on this year, Mendiola proves he's as talented as I think he will be and Lassiter makes the jump.
We've got a lot of uncertainty surrounding the team in this off-season and undoubtedly Bruce will be reluctant to make changes. He's certainly a guy who doesn't jerk the wheel to over correct but occasionally that's to his detriment. We don't need huge changes but we have two contracts (Omar and Gerrard) that make movement in this off-season very difficult. Cutting the dead wood leaves a lot of roster spots open.
What's really interesting is that this is the first year of free agency meaning there may be some interesting players becoming available. Sounderatheart did a piece on who are FA elligible (though may not be out of contract) come 2016 and there are certainly some interesting names on there. Some of the guys have signed new contracts (like Boswell) since that article was published so we know they won't be available. Remember there are limits on how much free agents can make if they move (though no limit if they're traded or re-sign with their current team). Some interesting players and their 2015 salary and max 2016 salary:
Player (2015 salary, 2016 max)
Nick Rimando ($370k, $425k) - He's 35 but in my mind still one of the top keepers in MLS. He's an LA kid too so maybe a homecoming would be just what the doctor ordered. Also seems very much like a Bruce signing.
Dan Kennedy ($233k, $268k) - Another LA kid. I wasn't all that impressed with him in Dallas but he's an instant upgrade at GK. Dallas probably isn't very interested in keeping him around given the rise of Jesse Gonzalez
Chris Seitz ($130k, $156k) - Much less enthused about Seitz but he has SoCal ties (yes, SLO is the SoCal border). Maybe an interesting player but I'd much rather Rimando or Kennedy.
Chad Marshall ($291k, $335k) - If Omar goes, Marshall seems like the perfect replacement. He's from Riverside so I could see him wanting to come home.
Nat Borchers ($245k, $282k) - Fear the beard! Another player who could step in if Omar is moved. Not sure if he'd want to move again so quickly and doesn't have any California ties.
Drew Moor ($271k, $311k) - Not a leading MLS centerback but someone of note.
Sean Franklin ($234k, $269k) - If we move AJ back central with Omar, Franklin's speed and workrate might be the perfect compliment for Gio on the right wing.
Jeff Larentowicz ($271k, $312k) - Pricey and I don't see why Chicago would let him go without a fight but he'd be a good partner for Juninho if we can get rid of Gerrard. He's played centerback for Chicago but midfield is his natural position.
Nick LaBrocca ($180k, $216k) - Seems like a Bruce type signing. Would probably partner decently with Juninho, again dependent on Gerrard retiring.
Dax McCarty ($263k, $302k) - I doubt he'd come here but a McCarty-Juninho midfield would be sweet. If he doesn't stay in New York, except to see him in Orlando.
Ricardo Clark ($338k, $388k) - 2010 WC scapegoat and Kicker Of Fish. I doubt he leaves Houston though and is looking for a big contract.
Will Johnson ($334k, $384k) - A very good player that I think would compliment Juninho well given Johnson's attacking tendencies. A bit rough in the tackle and kind of a hot head. I don't think he comes here.
Fabian Espindola ($175k, $210k) - He's a punk but is only 29 and has proven serviceable in MLS. Apparently he's a DP but MLSPU has him listed at $175k. No transfer fee or bonuses were involved so I'm confused about that.
Dominic Oduro ($252k, $289k) - I'm not high on him (particularly at that price) but if we want speed, here is where we'd find it. He would certainly spread defenses, giving Keane more room to operate.
So that's just some ramblings for now.
“There are going to be changes,” Arena promised.
The team probably will be looking for an upgrade in goal since Ricketts, a midseason replacement for Jaime Penedo, who was released by the Galaxy after demanding a contract extension, will be 39 in June.
The team’s three designated-play spots are full, meaning Gonzalez figures to be gone as well. And though the team has a contract option on midfielder Juninho, the Brazilian’s agent is exploring options in Europe after seeing his client’s role in the Galaxy attack diminished by the addition of Gerrard.
Lletget, who came to the Galaxy last spring from West Ham United of the English Premier League, said he, too, would listen to offers from overseas.
I agree with most of you thoughts, here is where I disagree :
Mendiola : not that high on him after what I saw during CCL. Keep him and Maganto but I'm not sure he's better than Nacho. They'll have playing time next year.
Sorto : first season we saw him in action, he's not bad but the problem is I don't really know if he's good enough to be a backup at RB next season if Gargan is gone.
Walker : keep him, he's been good at the beginning of the year and a good end of the bench player.
Your list of MLS players is a little bit unrealistic. Except for the GK all of the players are solid starters for their teams. LaBrocca is not good enough for the Galaxy.
Kennedy seems to be the most likely option at the moment, I won't be surprised to see him start for us next year. Instant upgrade over Ricketts, no doubt about this, but not a great keeper IMO.
Well those players are potential free agents so we wouldn't have to trade anything for them so starter or not it really doesn't matter. Looking at it now, Rimando signed a new contract in 2014 so that's out.
Great list @GalaxyKoa ! I may not agree with all of it, but it's a fantastic smart post.
The fact that Juni is considering leaving due to Gerrard is another reason we should give Stevie the boot. That is DISASTER STATIONS.
I would love to have Dax here, but doubt NY would let him go.
Here's an idea for CB: do you think DC United would be willing to give Kofi Opare back? I'd take him back and groom him. He's done well for DC this year.
Juninho leaving is alarming, but I’m not sure what can be done. He’s already at or near the max-player salary and “retention funds”.
Another team would be more than willing to take him and make him a lower paid DP.
Agreed, I meant I’m not sure what LA can do. He’ll probably end up in Colorado with Sarvas.
No worries, I gotcha. It's a pickle for sure.
Doesn't sound like a man who is leaving...but who knows...
Omar Gonzalez @Omar4Gonzalez 15h15 hours ago
This is a 1st for me. Never been out this early. It stings + I'm sure it will sting more in the coming days. We win + lose as a team. (1/2)
Omar Gonzalez @Omar4Gonzalez 15h15 hours ago
Thanks to my teammates for a gr8t year. To our fans, thank you for sticking by us. We fell short but 2016 we'll be stronger + hungrier (2/2)
I don't think he's going anywhere. On current form, he's not getting bought, and I don't think may teams would trade for a defensive DP. I'm pretty confident that we're keeping him, which I am OK with. He'll have a bounce back year, I am betting.
Oh I didn't see they could be free agents, my bad!
I would welcome Franklin back to push AJ in the middle.
An other name would doesn't sound sexy but could be a great backup and with California ties : Jordan Harvey. But he may be too good to be Rogers's backup.
Does anyone remember that Swiss or Swedish or Austrian or something goal keeper we were linked to about a year ago? My memory is fuzzy, but I thought he was a free-agent as of the winter transfer window.