Photo by ISI Photos
The shake-up of the Los Angeles Galaxy roster continued with a pair of major moves on Thursday. Goalkeeper Joe Cannon was dealt to the San Jose Earthquakes while newly-acquired midfielder Clint Mathis apperas to have passed on re-signing with LA and signed a deal in Greece instead.
The Galaxy parted ways with Cannon after spending a large part of the off-season trying to unload him. Cannon returns to San Jose, where he won an MLS Cup title in 2001. Los Angeles received allocation money in the deal and will now hand the goalkeeper duties to young prospect Steve Cronin, who recently joined his first U.S. national team camp.
According to reports out of Greece, Mathis has signed a deal with Greek club Ergotelis, which is currently in last place in the 16-team Greek league. Sources told SBI in December that Mathis was a good bet to move to Europe and his good form on the Los Angeles Galaxy’s tour of Australia and New Zealand may have served to precipitate a deal. The Galaxy acquired Mathis from the Red Bulls for a third-round draft pick. Sources within MLS have yet to confirm Mathis’ departure but the Ergotelis website shows Mathis signing. Anyone who knows Greek is welcome to translate.
The Cannon deal helps free up even more cap space for a Galaxy squad rumored to be eyeing another designated player slot. It also puts the goalkeeping job in the hands of a talented but unproven player in Cronin. Cannon was arguably the Galaxy’s best player in 2007 and remains one of the best goalkeepers in MLS.
The deal helps give San Jose a cornerstone player with strong ties to the area. Now the question is whether the Earthquakes will consider dealing Preston Burpo back to Chivas USA, which is poised to lose Brad Guzan to a large transfer this month.
What do you think of the Galaxy dealing Cannon? How about Mathis leaving MLS again? How about the Galaxy giving away a third-round draft pick for two exhibition matches worth of Mathis? Share your thoughts below.