The LA Galaxy are white hot these days, so our friends running the SB Nation blog Massive Report which covers the Columbus Crew were certainly curious about what makes the club get so hot this time of year. Watch me be my pompous and arrogant self while answering their questions about LA:
1. Landon Donovan announced he would retire at the end of the season. At just 32-years old, do you expect this to stick? Could we see a Michael Jordan-like return for Donovan after he takes some time away from the game or do you expect him to be done for good?
I expect it to stick primarily because this isn't his first time dipping into the retirement pool. The comparable example of Michael Jordan doesn't fit because Jordan's decision came after huge emotional turmoil, and he still had something to keep him in shape while he was gone.
What Donovan does have in common with Jordan is that feeling that he has nothing left to accomplish. We saw him flirting with Europe in those offseason loans, thinking maybe that was the challenge still out there for him. Ultimately, he seems to have landed on what kept him from staying in Europe the first time around; he values his family over the all out dedication to his career.
Literally for half his life, every decision he's made has been soccer related. It puts a different perspective on just being 32. Remember that's the same age where David Beckham gave up European soccer for MLS. Something about that age.
2. Crew fans are familiar with Robbie Rogers, but not as a left back where he has played recently due to injury. How has the former member of the Black and Gold done along the back line? Is he there to add offense on the left side of the field or have his defensive skills improved to the point where he can help out defensively as well?
He's done a solid job, but his overall defensive contribution isn't much. He still occasionally takes the wrong angle but he is going after fifty-fifty balls in key situations.
His biggest contribution is his distribution on overlapping runs, he's starting to rack up assists and key passes regularly now that he's settled into his position.
A.J. DeLaGarza has the speed to make up for a defender caught out of position, but Robbie Rogers left back never would have worked if he couldn't defend. Still, it would be silly to think that's his primary responsibility.
3. It always seems the Galaxy find a way to get hot at the right time and make a push for the MLS Cup Playoffs and the Supporters' Shield. What is it about this team that's gotten them back on track after a somewhat slow start to the campaign?
The first half of the season always has the distractions of CONCACAF Champions League, and especially in a World Cup year both Donovan and Gonzalez had their heads elsewhere for a few months.
Now that everyone is back full time and committed to the push, things have gotten better. Some of the biggest contributors right now didn't start the season where they're playing right now: Gyasi Zardes was on the bench, Robbie Rogers was injured, and trying to figure out how to get the best eleven players together was a struggle.
Turned out the diamond wasn't the solution but rather this Y midfield that is starting to click and gets everyone mixing the way they should.
It's gonna be fun to watch.