Written by Will Parchman

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There was no one in the Development Academy last season quite like Efrain Alvarez. In reality, there have been few like him in the academy’s history.

Alvarez has been a star in the making seemingly since he first stepped over the lines for the Galaxy in the DA more than two years ago. His first three months in the academy, for the Galaxy 14s, he scored 16 goals. He was a no-doubt starter in the attacking midfield for John Hackworth’s U.S. U15 BNT practically from the moment he was eligible. He’s been playing up in age group seemingly his entire youth career, and he almost invariably looks like the most dangerous force on the field. He was at the center of a desperate tug-of-war between the USSF and the FMF, a battle Mexico appears to have won.

At least for now.

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Written by Ben Levin

redBullsGalaxyHARRISON, N.J. — Two goals in two minutes from Roman Alessandrini was too much for a hapless New York Red Bulls side to overcome as the LA Galaxy prevailed 3-1 at Red Bull Arena.

Both teams needed a win entering Sunday’s win. The Red Bulls have struggled on the road in recent times; three points were a must at home. The Galaxy were coming off of a game in which their captain, Jelle Van Damme, was pulled within the first 40 minutes, and they sputtered to a 2-2 draw.

The Galaxy got the fast start that they needed.

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Written by Will Parchman

jermainerevs

The LA Galaxy are recovering DP addicts.

The Beckham Era changed a lot about MLS, but what it changed about the Galaxy in particular is less obvious. The Galaxy have always been the miniature Chelsea of MLS, leaning on buying habits that seem sometimes less about building championship teams (which they’ve done) and more about building a brand (which they’ve certainly done).

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Written by Will Parchman

mnt

For what seems like an eon, the Sword of Damocles hung perilously over young John Hilton. It recently fell, clattering harmlessly to the ground, but it did not bring about the result the Hilton – colloquially referred to as Xuxuh – camp would have brought about for themselves.

Hilton’s prodigious talent has been on display since he first hit the public consciousness in 2013 with a highlight video that captured the nation’s attention, to say the least. Hilton was then a precocious 11-year-old in the Chivas USA youth system, which has since been scuttled. But Hilton quickly went on the move, first to Manchester City and then finally settling – or so it seemed – at Ajax.

This is where the turbulence began.

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Written by Will Parchman

lag

The elite development landscape for girls soccer in the U.S. has never been more muddled. On one side, you have the ECNL, the nationwide league running since 2009 currently churning out around 90 percent of each U.S. Soccer YNT camp roster, on average. On the other, this new DA venture, which has expanded out to around 80 teams and will fling open its gilded doors for the first time next fall.

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Written by Will Parchman

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This has been something of a charmed year for the FC Dallas organization from root to stem. On the academy level, FCD shockingly swept the U16 and U18 Development Academy titles in July, a feat that may not be equaled in millennia (maybe).

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Written by Will Parchman

arellano

Another member of the 2013-15 U17 World Cup cycle just signed a pro deal in lieu of turning to college soccer.

LA Galaxy Homegrown Hugo Arellano, the American captain at that most prestigious of youth tournaments, just signed for LA Galaxy II.

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Written by Will Parchman

LAG

The U.S. Open Cup roped in MLS teams this week, and we inevitably get an upset or two in the offing.

Tuesday was not, however, one of those days. The fourth round of the USOC got off to a relatively normal start, but we did have a couple close shaves. Real Salt Lake trailed Wilmington 2-0 and needed penalties to leg out a win. And a 10-man LA Galaxy was taken into extra time with a 1-1 game against fourth-tier UPSL side La Maquina. This goal from Dave Romney saved them. They ultimately scored twice more and won 4-1.

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Written by Will Parchman

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Steven Gerrard was objectively poor for the Galaxy in 2015.

While he started promisingly, he was a meandering wreck for the Galaxy’s back half of the season, wandering in and out of possession, lifting bored long balls to no one and generally not doing much of anything. In the team’s final game of the season – a 3-2 loss to the Sounders in the playoffs – Gerrard groped his way blindly through a match that left him behind. He only attempted 44 passes, did not even attempt a single tackle and left behind a heat map that looked like it had been left in an arctic ice block.

The old Gerrard is clearly there, somewhere, but he’s been washed out by the white noise of boredom, age and a faltering set of skills that leaves him somewhere above broken and somewhere well below useful.

And he costs the Galaxy $6 million per year.

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Written by Will Parchman

ibra

Somebody hit the alarms. All of the alarms. The Zlatan Eventuality is here.

Ibra is coming.

(Maybe).

(Probably).

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