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LA Galaxy 2022 Player Postmortem: Jonathan Perez

Youngster didn’t play a lot, but had a knack for scoring when he did.

Leagues Cup Showcase - Club Deportiva Guadalajara v Los Angeles Galaxy Photo by Omar Vega/Getty Images

Jonathan Perez was back with the LA Galaxy for his second season as a first-team member in 2022, and to sum up, it was another season of brief glimpses of the attacker.

The 19-year-old homegrown got a few brief looks in the 2021 season, after looking pretty decent in the preseason. Maybe not quite Designated Player levels, but could he come off the bench and do something? Seemed like it.

But Perez’s first team action in 2022 was mostly limited to the U.S. Open Cup and friendly action. In brief glimpses, he played well, but he didn’t play a lot overall in the season.

Here are Perez’s competitive stats with the first team in 2022:

Jonathan Perez LA Galaxy 2022 Statistics

2022 Games Played Games Started Minutes Goals Assists Shots SOG Yellow Cards Red Cards
2022 Games Played Games Started Minutes Goals Assists Shots SOG Yellow Cards Red Cards
Regular Season 1 0 7 0 0 0 0 0 0
U.S. Open Cup 2 1 63 0 0 3 2 0 0
Playoffs 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 3 1 70 0 0 3 2 0 0

The big highlight for Perez came in the friendly, the Leagues Cup game against Chivas, in which Perez scored one of the goals in the 2-0 win for LA.

You can tell from the celebrations and how happy they were on the sideline, what it meant for Perez, and look, that finish is legit. Coming against his favorite Liga MX team is just icing on the cake.

Aside from brief first team action, Perez made just a handful of appearances for LA Galaxy II in USL Championship play this year, but he had three goals and three assists in just four games. I’m not sure if that pace would have been sustainable if he played, say, 30 games, but he certainly made an impact when he did feature. It really seems like he has a handle on the USL Championship level at this point.

But in the final months of the season, Perez suffered a knee injury and was out from mid-August on in all competitions. That was a shame, as the 19-year-old has shown he has some real finishing ability in brief glimpses, and he couldn’t play a role at all down the stretch.

I think Perez and Cameron Dunbar are both homegrown attackers who actually show some skills we don’t see elsewhere on the Galaxy first team, but for whatever reason Greg Vanney hasn’t been comfortable getting them in the rotation regularly with the first team this year. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think either player is in a position to carry the team, but it would have been nice to see them getting more stints off the bench. But it didn’t happen.

I don’t know if Perez will be back with the Galaxy in 2023, I think the Galaxy like his game but I also don’t know if there’s a path to real playing time with the first team moving forward. Like many of his peers, I think he’s definitely a Division II player at this point and so moving to MLS Next Pro with Los Dos next year will most likely be a step down for him on a personal development level, and frankly he could be a player who could find the right situation with a club in Mexico. It can obviously be tough for dual citizens in Liga MX but if he finds a team where he gets some playing time, that could really jumpstart his career and really open up options for him. Time will tell, but aside from a few notable highlights, it was a pretty quiet 2022 for Jonathan Perez at the Galaxy.

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