MLS- LA Galaxy

Buddle returning to Galaxy


Photo by Michael Janosz/ISIphotos.com

For the other 18 teams in MLS, knocking the Los Angeles Galaxy off their perch atop the league just became a bit more difficult.

U.S. national team forward Edson Buddle is rejoining the Galaxy after being released from his contract with FC Ingolstadt 04 on Tuesday, sources told SBI. Los Angeles maintained his MLS rights following his free transfer to Ingolstadt last January, and the club will welcome him back into the fold for what is shaping up to be the league's most potent attack. In 2010, his last season in MLS, Buddle scored 17 goals, finishing second to Chris Wondolowski for the league's golden boot.

With Buddle starting alongside Robbie Keane and Landon Donovan and David Beckham occupying spots in the midfield behind them, the Galaxy will have a wealth of All-Star-caliber attacking talent. Buddle also provides more than ample cover for when Keane has to leave the club for Republic of Ireland duty at Euro 2012.  

Despite all of the star power on the roster, the Galaxy are able to afford Buddle by shedding a good chunk of salary from the books this offseason with the losses of players like Juninho, Donovan Ricketts, Jovan Kirovski and Gregg Berhalter. Los Angeles also received allocation money from Montreal in exchange for Ricketts to boost its financial flexibility, something that helped facilitate bringing Buddle back to the Home Depot Center.

Buddle played for the Galaxy from 2007-2010 before heading overseas to Ingolstadt last winter when his MLS contract expired, joining the 2. Bundesliga club midseason. He helped Ingolstadt stave off relegation and was tied for the team's lead in goals this season with six before being sent away from the club for unspecified reasons prior to the league's winter break.

While in club limbo, Buddle trained with West Ham and was on trial with Everton and Belgian side Westerlo before ultimately returning to MLS.


What do you make of Buddle's return? Think the Galaxy are a lock to repeat as MLS Cup champions?

Share your thoughts below.

  • Benny Dargle

    He actually turned down a deal with a Belgian club after trialing with them, so it’s not like he couldn’t have been stayed overseas if he wanted. He probably decided European football wasn’t as glamorous as it seemed. He’ll get a lot more worldwide publicity playing for the Galaxy alongside Beckham/Donovan/Keane than for Ingolstadt or any other mid-rate Euro club.


  • Gent

    No, this is a legit question. It depends on Concacaf rules, because the CCL could be considered in motion at this time.

    “Cup-tied is an adjective, used primarily in association football, to describe a player who is ineligible to play in a knockout cup competition after transferring from another club during that competition.”


  • Suga

    IMO, he shouldn’t be able to play in CCL. He did nothing in 2011 to help the team get to this point.


  • Left Said Fred

    I’m happy for him.

    He proved he can be a leading scorer in Europe while making a nice salary. He gets to come home where he is a fan favorite. He gets to make more money than he was making before. He gets to play on a championship team where doesn’t have to be the savior. He has titles, another World Cup call-up, and possibly bigger paydays down the road to strive for.

    I wish my career looked this good.


  • Luis Figo

    Galaxy also picks up Kyle Nakazawa from Philadelphia for an international slot.

    He is a nice depth player, but I would have saved the international slot for an experienced foreign defender to pair with De La Garza.


  • Edwin in LA

    Wait, when did Birchall leave the club? I thought he might take over for Juninho? But maybe that’s because I always felt with Juninho in the Center ATTACKING Mid spot being more forward the Galaxy were better off, and putting Beckham in the right wing and pushing Donovan either up top with Keane or to the left where he did all kinds of damage…

    But it makes sense if they are getting Buddle back to play Donovan on the right and Beckham in the middle in front of the D-Mid/Holding mid..

    Always thought Birchall was a good one and for some reason he had about 2 to 3 shots that would go awfully close to goal…but he was a bit of a hot head, and if there’s one thing we have an abundance of in the league and College/youth rank system it’s Defensive oriented players so CBs and Holding mids shouldn’t be scarce and for cheap… so it makes sense to not bring him back…

    But with CCL, both now in the knock out stages and the 2012-13 CCL, and a new more promoted Open Cup I would of liked the depth..

    As for Hedjuk, even with De la Garza probably seeing CB time all year with Gonzo hurt, I am fine with Bryan Jordan or a rookie covering for Franklin at Right back, especially for almost 100K…

    Just between Berhalter and Hedjuk you can cover Buddle’s salary, not to mention the Allocation money they got from Montreal. Juninho is almost a straight swap with our new Brazilian from Alajuelense.

    LA is in good shape, just hope Leonardo can stay healthy all year and that Dasan Robinson can bring some quality minutes


  • Luke

    Robbie Keane only played 4 regular season games and had 2 goals. He played 9 games total in all competitions and had 4 goals. Having him the whole year, with the addition of Buddle and having Donovan and Beckham to set them up…


  • Ernie

    Birchall is no big loss. Mikey Stephens is already a better player…Younger, cheaper, and more versatile. The Brazilian Sarvas is a terrific partner for Beckham in the center.

    My worry for LA is in central defense. Boyens is nice cover as a backup, but he doesn’t have the quickness of Omar G. Leonardo is still recovering from injury, so he won’t be full strength for awhile.


  • Freddy G

    no deal now unless they release him from contract. Does they have anything left to spend though???


  • RSLfan

    What they said below pretty much. He had other options but chose to come back here, and he was playing pretty well for that team and scored in a recent U.S. friendly in Europe w/ something resembling our and Slovenia’s A teams. He obviously isn’t one of the worlds best, but he is very good and helps the quality of our league.


  • Galarcep Blatter

    Point taken, guys. I just wish that MLS wasn’t everyone’s fall back league. MLS is a tough league. It should therefore be tough to get on a squad. He’s quality, but perhaps he’s lost a step since he left. I just wish there was a little more of a screening process. Same goes for Conde signing with RBNY. Just because you used to tear it up in MLS doesn’t mean you can still do it.


  • pd

    Thanks for that teaser Mark, I just did the same as fischy (and wasted a good hour or so in the process).

    That thread read like The Alamo… unbelievable how he took on all of cyberspace.

    That said, while I can see the “lost condience argument” I think there is something to be said for the “he’s been told to lay back and pick his battles” argument and the “he’s gassed” line of thinking as well. Coupled with the fact that he’ll come back from Everton and dive right into CCL with LA he’s probably also saving his energy and playing to avoid injury.

    Regardless of the reasons for it think it’s refreshing to see a player be able to switch up his style of play so much and still generate the kind of results expected of him.

    As for his leaving it all on the field at the World Cup, well… it’s the World Cup. It’s supposed to be the aren’t for the performance of a lifetime.

    I’m a Philly fan and I reluctantly admit that I think this LA team is as dangerous if not MORE dangerous now than they were last season, even with the loss of Juninho and Gonzalez.


  • Edwin in LA

    He’ll be back soon enough, about a month after the regular season he should be at full 100% and getting minutes to get match fit and in form…

    Dasan Robinson can provide some cover as well, I think Boyens can hold his own. The thing about the Galaxy is that they defend as a team, Donovan and Magee help Franklin and Dunivant a lot and with a more potent offense like I said it will be more difficult for people to attack them.

    I think Leonardo was great, I’m hoping he can start as much as possible


  • Edwin in LA

    But doesn’t it apply to teams that participated in said competition?

    You can bring in someone new midseason, if you are able to do so within the continent why would you not be able to do so at the midway point? Unless the games were tomorrow and the roster had been entered already then I can understand, but there is plenty of time, more than enough if you ask me…


  • Edwin in LA

    I don’t see how it is now or never, he’ll be 30 heading into the LAST year of his contract a year from now, basically the same exact position except now the Galaxy will only have 1 more chance to get something for him next Winter Transfer window. If he is not sold then they won’t get very much for him in Summer of 2013 when in 4 months after that he can be signed for free and you can negotiate a contract even before that.

    I personally agree with 10 piece that he does have something to play for with the late run in the CCL, and after this year I can see him leaving. People always forget MLS AND the LA Galaxy have a say in this, as he is barely halfway thru his 4 year contract, but next year he’ll have 1 left and the league will want to cash in, I think MLS would still want 10 million or more but Everton might not be inclined to pay that much…which I don’t know why, the Rangers guy got a transfer of about 9 million dollars plus, so Landon MUST be worth more, hell the fans that Everton will get alone buying Landon jerseys might be worth it


  • Edwin in LA

    He did let it be known that he wanted to play and stay at Everton the last time around. But people act like he has much of a choice? Sure if he bitches and whines to MLS and DEMANDS a transfer I suppose he could not exactly the best way to leave a good legacy as the face of the league now is it? And it will for sure not set a good example for future stars in a league that already is known for having a rep of making it hard on players to make the move to European teams. I know we want to keep our talents but until the pay, draw, ratings and overall playing level it will be hard since MLS will be behind Europe until it improves vastly. Thus not making a smooth professional transition for players to transfer across the pond is a bad thing….

    How do you sign more guys like Fredy Montero, Fabian Castillo, Andy Najar etc etc if they think that when they reach a peak level at MLS then they’ll be given hell trying to transfer?


  • Edwin in LA

    What makes you say that? Is not like they have no goalkeeper, no Center backs at all and no full time experience Best XI Full backs….

    They lost Omar, but Leonardo will be healthy soon, they got Dasan Robinson at the end of last season and he is at least experienced and can be serviceable and they did get Boyens who was solid for the Goats before getting injured…..

    Franklin & Dunivant are still there. Yes they traded away Ricketts but still have Josh Saunders who played over half a season, all of the playoffs and even in the two seasons before last he backed up Ricketts more than fine giving them shutouts. Last season the Galaxy broke the record for least Goals allowed if I’m not mistaken and tied the shutouts record from what I recall…

    How is this team a repeat of 08? Franklin was a rookie and despite winning Rookie of the Year, he is now 4 year veteran and MLS Best XI type of player, do I need to talk about the best Left back in MLS Dunivant?

    Sarvas should be good enough, I personally think Juninho was as great because he was held back as the D-Mid, when in fact he seemed to me like a great CAM but with Beckham maybe better off central, and no need to slot LD up top it fits better…

    That 08 Galaxy team had guys like Julian Valentin, Gavin, Alan Gordon, Klein in well past his prime etc etc… oh and how can I forget Abel Xavier


  • Edwin in LA

    Vancouver has a lot of forwards now with Le Toux, Hassli who if he repeats his production level but learns to adapt to MLS refs and doesn’t lead the league in cards might actually lead the league in goals, Omar Salgado, the DP guy Jarju unless they cut him, and Atiba Harris. So I’m wondering how they will play? With Camilo as an attacking mid and what about Chuimiento? Wing? Or the other way around with Camilo on the wing and Chuimiento the center attacking mid?


  • Edwin in LA

    Think about how the Galaxy tied a lot of their games in 1-1 or 0-0 fashion, and they would cut it close with 1-0 or 2-1 close wins both in CCL & MLS play…this gives them more firepower. I thought if Barrett was healthy all year he could score double figures, mainly because he ended with 9 while missing like 3 or months and he did miss a lot in the beginning of the season, but got together even scoring a GOLAZO when he eventually started to score them. I think if he was in the MLS Cup final he puts in at least 1 of the 3 Cristman missed.
    In any case, Keane all year will help much more as was evidence by the 9 games he played in like Luke said below. And Buddle is a big improvement over Barrett, and in any case gives them the depth needed to finish the knock-out rounds of the current CCL and next season’s.

    I kind of hope Cristman gets cut now with Noonan there he is not needed. But I did read Barrett makes 225K, that’s a lot but if he can produce close to what he did last year I’m okay, considering it will be much harder on a 3rd FW in the depth chart.., wouldn’t mind trading Barrett for a high draft pick or good solid athletic CB tho…
    Kind of hard to predict who would be among the last teams with high draft picks tho lol
    But Barrett plus a solid athletic CB and cash plus pick would be good…


  • Edwin in LA

    Notice I said solid, not great or good but ATHLETIC CB, not just a big guy who is an American styled player who is “A good athlete”, by athletic I meant someone like the back up guys RSL had, or maybe a guy like Darrius Barnes, not him specifically but similar to him


  • Edwin in LA

    Apparently they paid Chad Barrett over 200k, like 225 so I don’t see how Buddle can’t get say 400K… they did cut a lot of pay roll with Hedjuk, Berhalter, and then over 150K for both Birchall and Ricketts, hell the latter was almost 200K. Both these last 2 are enough to pay him and they got allocation money from Montreal for Ricketts to supplement his pay to 400K or more, and Juninho’s pay should be very similar to Sarvas, they should be fine paying him a good 400K


  • Edwin in LA

    He’s great but they have Marcos Santos, who on his best seasons he barely matched Charlie Davies output from last season even if you take away his 3 PKs, 1 of which was rightfully awarded btw… and so I don’t know how great they will be but a lot depends on Pontius being healthy and keep improving his play.

    i hope both Najar AND Pontius tear the wings of MLS apart and help DeRo return DC into the premiere levels and give the East some depth and parity…. Last year’s playoff teams should be good except for CLB. Union, Houston, NY, SKC should be good & while CLB may drop DC should rise and Chicago looks poised to be in the playoff hunt all season long. Toronto looks great too so I think we’ll have a more competitive league overall Revs might not be great but I think they may be better, solid at least. Montreal have no idea but could be a challenge


  • Edwin in LA

    I believe it’s only good for 2 years, after that the team no longer holds the player’s rights or the option to refuse them.

    Kind of like when they draft a player, it’s good for 2 years….if that player chooses to go abroad..

    It’s only been barely a year to the date that he left MLS


  • biff

    Hmmm. I can’t argue with your reasoning. Makes sense. I guess, though, that Donovan is the key. I can’t imagine that LA/MLS would stand in the way of a transfer if he told them he truly wants to do it .


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