By ADAM SERRANO
After a difficult start to the season, the Los Angeles Galaxy added some defensive help on Tuesday by acquiring Brazilian centerback David Junior Lopes from rival Chivas USA in exchange for midfielder Paolo Cardozo.
Lopes has yet to make an appearance for Chivas USA this season, but the hulking Brazilian centerback made eight apperances and seven starts for the Rojiblancos in 2011 after joining the club midseason from Romanian club FC Universitatea Craiova.
"He's a big strong centerback, left footed with good athletic ability and it gives us physicality in that position that we haven't had and experience," Galaxy head coach and general manger Bruce Arena said on Tuesday. "I think that with all these type of moves, you need to see how the player deals with the transition and we're pretty open to what kind of role that he's going to play."
Upon his inclusion to the Galaxy, Lopes is expected to battle Andrew Boyens and Tommy Meyer for the centerback slot alongside A.J. DeLaGarza, a position of weakness ever since Omar Gonzalez went down with a torn ACL. Lopes will also fight for minutes with Leonardo, with the on-loan Brazilian centerback due to return to the field after recovering from an ACL injury.
"It's a discussion that we've had with Chivas for awhile and gives us the ability to strengthen ourselves in that position and it also allows us to move Brian Gaul to the left back position and add depth there as well," said Arena."It doesn't say anything about [Meyer or Boyens] it's a move that we're making to make our team stronger."
Cardozo, meanwhile, who was the Galaxy's first-round selection (16th overall) in the 2011 MLS SuperDraft, made just one appearance this season, starting the Galaxy's 3-1 defeat to the New England Revolution last month. The Uruguayan made 17 appearances for the Galaxy last season, earning eight starts.
What are your thoughts on the trade? Who got the better end of the deal? Do you think this helps solve the Galaxy's problem?
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