L.A. Galaxy players train with top European clubs
CARSON, CA - Two members of the Los Angeles Galaxy will be training with European first division clubs this week, the Galaxy announced today. In his sixth season with the Galaxy, veteran defender Danny Califf will be working out with Norwegian Premier Division side Vålerenga IF for the next handful of days. Second-year defender/midfielder Josh Gardner, meanwhile, is in training with English Premiership club Bolton Wanderers FC.
"We are glad to give a couple of our players the chance to train with some of Europe's top-flight clubs," said Galaxy President and General Manager Doug Hamilton. "Their time in Europe will undoubtedly aid in their preparations for the 2005 season."
Califf, 24, was a Galaxy first-round draft pick (sixth overall) in 2000 after two seasons at the University of Maryland. In five seasons with the club, he has appeared in 103 regular season matches - 95 of them starts - and played a total of 8,814 minutes. The Galaxy's Defender of the Year in 2000 has also scored five goals and contributed four assists for a total of 14 points. Additionally, the Orange, California native has seen extensive action with the U.S. national team since the conclusion of FIFA World Cup Korea/Japan 2002.
The strong, versatile defender joins a top-flight Norwegian side that presently sits in second place in the Eliteserien standings. Though tied with Rosenborg BK on 48 points through 26 matches, Vålerenga find themselves just out of the lead on account of having one less victory than their rivals.
Gardner, 22, played in two games for the Galaxy as a rookie in 2004; each of them as a substitute. A Galaxy second-round selection in the 2004 MLS SuperDraft, he made his debut in a 14-minute performance against the Columbus Crew on September 4 at Crew Stadium, just North on Interstate 71 from his collegiate stomping grounds at the University of Cincinnati. In addition, he played the entire match in the Galaxy's 1-0 loss to the Minnesota Thunder in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.
Bolton, who host the youngster in camp this week, are currently in 11th place in the Premiership, mustering 30 points from their first 23 games. Though not quite equal to the pace set by leaders Chelsea, Wanderers are merely seven points behind fifth-placed Liverpool FC.
Los Angeles Galaxy tickets for the 2005 MLS season at The Home Depot Center are now on sale. For more information or to purchase tickets, call the Galaxy ticket office toll-free at 1-877-3GALAXY.