HOW ACQUIRED: Selected by the Galaxy in the first round (3rd overall) of the 2009 MLS SuperDraft.
Omar Gonzalez is a big, physical centerback who has emerged as a starter for the US Men's National Team. Playing with the Galaxy after he was drafted third overall in the 2009 MLS SuperDraft, Gonzalez has been named the Rookie of the Year, Defender of the Year, and to four MLS Best XI's (2010, 2011, 2013, 2014). At the team level he has won three MLS Cups (2011, 2012, 2014) and two Supporters Shields (2010, 2011).
2014: Gonzalez anchored a Galaxy backline that allowed an MLS-low 37 goals all season, starting in 22 regular season matches in addition to all five MLS Cup Playoff matches. In addition to his contributions from his position in central defense, he scored a career-hight four goals and added a career-high two assists on the season. For his efforts, he was named an MLS All-Star, to the MLS Best XI and a Finalist for MLS Defender of the Year.
2013: Started in all 27 of his appearances for the Galaxy, scoring one goal and adding two assists. Was named to his third MLS Best XI and also earned honors as LA Galaxy’s Defender of the Year, his third time being named that honor.
2012: While on loan to FC Nuremberg, suffered a torn ligament that kept him sidelined for a portion of the Galaxy’s Regular Season. Went on to make 13 starts in 14 appearances during the regular season. In the playoffs, Gonzalez started in six matches, scoring a goal that sparked a comeback against the Houston Dynamo in the 2012 MLS Cup final as the Galaxy captured their fourth MLS Cup.
2011: The 2011 MLS Defender of the Year, as well as the Galaxy’s Defender of the Year and a member of the MLS Best XI, Gonzalez had two goals and an assist in 29 regular season games. With Gonzalez marshaling the center of defense, the Galaxy allowed the fewest goals in the league and equaled an MLS record with 17 clean sheets while adding two more in the playoffs and three in the CONCACAF Champions League. After missing the first three games of the year, Gonzalez returned to the field in April and scored his first goal of the season at Chicago on 4/17. He added a second goal against FC Dallas on 8/6 before tallying an assist at Kansas City on 9/5. Gonzalez also missed time in mid-July after breaking his nose, forcing him to miss the MLS All-Star Game, which he had been named as a starter for. He added a goal and an assist in the U.S. Open Cup and a goal in the Champions League as well. In the playoffs, Gonzalez played every minute of LA’s four games, helping the club win their first MLS Cup since 2005.
2010: The Galaxy’s 2010 Defender of the Year and an MLS All-Star for the first time in his career, Omar Gonzalez had a breakout season for the Galaxy in 2010. A finalist for the MLS Defender of the Year award and a member of the league’s Best XI, Gonzalez started 28 of the club’s regular season games, as well as all three postseason games, leading the club in regular season games played and minutes played amongst all field players. He scored his first goal of the year in the 4-0 win at Seattle on 5/8 and then added his second on second half stoppage time of the 1-1 draw at Chicago on 9/4, heading home a Landon Donovan corner kick to save a point for LA. Gonzalez also added a goal in the postseason, scoring the game-winner in the second leg of the Western Conference Semifinal Series win over Seattle at The Home Depot Center when he headed a David Beckham freekick past Kasey Keller to give LA a 2-0 lead. He was booked a team-high eight times on the season and was forced to miss two games through suspension. These were the first two games of Gonzlaez’s MLS career that he missed and LA lost both games by 2-0 scorelines. He was the first Galaxy defender to be named to the Best XI since Chris Albright in 2005 and the first LA nominee to be named a finalist for the league’s Defender of the Year award since Tyrone Marshall that same season.
2009: The 2009 MLS Rookie of the Year, Gonzalez was the only Galaxy player to start all 30 of the club’s regular season games. He made his MLS debut starting and playing all 90 minutes at center back in the season opening 2-2 draw vs. D.C. United on 3/22. He scored the first goal of his MLS career in the following game, heading home a Landon Donovan corner kick in the first half of a 3-2 loss vs. Colorado on 4/4. Gonzalez later added his first assist of his career on David Beckham’s game-winning goal vs. Chivas USA on 8/29. He played the full 90 minutes in 29 of LA’s 30 regular season games, missing just the final 28 minutes of the 1-0 vs. Houston on 6/28 because of injury. The 21-year-old led the Galaxy in both minutes played (2,672) and yellow cards (five), collecting his first in the 1-1 draw at FC Dallas on 5/23, while also setting new club rookie records for games started and minutes played and tying the record for games played by a rookie. He helped the Galaxy allow an MLS record 31 fewer goals than the season before and set a club record 12 clean sheets. In the postseason, Gonzalez started all four of the Galaxy’s games, going the distance in each of the first three before being forced to exit late in regulation of MLS Cup because of an injury. He joined Sean Franklin as the only two players in club history to have been named MLS Rookie of the Year.
Joined FC Nürnberg of the German Bundesliga on a six-week loan on January 5, but suffered a torn ACL in his left knee during his first training session with the club, ending the loan and forcing Gonzalez to return to the U.S. in order to undergo surgery.
A three year starter at the University of Maryland, Gonzalez started all 69 of the games in which he appeared in for the Terrapins, helping them win the NCAA Championship as a junior in 2008. Gonzalez finished his college career with seven goals and five assists before turning pro after his junior season. He had a career-high five goals to go along with one assist during his junior season in 2008 when he was named to the NSCAA/adidas All-American First Team and First Team All-ACC while also being named a semifinalist for the MAC Hermann Trophy, which is given out annually to the country’s best college soccer player. In the NCAA Tournament, Gonzalez spearheaded a Maryland defense that allowed just one goal in five games and was named the College Cup Defensive MVP. He helped lead the Terrapins to 15 clean sheets in 26 games, including seven in eight games during the ACC and NCAA Tournaments. The 2007 ACC Defensive Player of the Year, Gonzalez was also named to Second Team All ACC and NSCAA/adidas All-American Third Team that season after claiming All-ACC Freshman Team and Soccer America Second Team All-Freshman honors the previous year. He scored his first career-goal in 2006 in a 4-1 win over Bucknell, also adding an assist in that game.
2014: Named to the 2014 FIFA World Cup roster for the U.S. ... Made his World Cup debut against Portugal on June 22, 2014, coming on as a sub in the 91st minute ... Started the final game of the 2014 World Cup group stage against Germany, his first World Cup start ... Has appeared in five games in 2014, starting three ... 2013: Tied for third on the U.S. MNT with 14 appearances during the year and was second in minutes played with 1,172, trailing only DaMarcus Beasley … Gonzalez, who holds dual citizenship in the USA and Mexico, became cap-tied to the U.S. MNT with his start in the scoreless draw against Mexico on Feb. 26 at Estadio Azteca … 2012: Did not make an appearance for the U.S. MNT … 2011: Made one appearance for the USA, earning the start during the team’s 1-1 draw against Chile on Jan. 22 …2010: Made international debut for the U.S. MNT on Aug. 10, 2010 against Brazil … 2009: Received his first call-up to train with the full MNT … Under-20s: Played for the U.S. Under 20’s at the Pan-American Games in 2007, scoring twice in the USA’s loss to Bolivia … Under-17s: Played at the 2005 FIFA Under-17 World Cup in Peru … First Appearance: Aug. 10, 2010, vs. Brazil… First Goal: None