L.A. Galaxy promote Afshin Ghotbi

CARSON, CA - The Los Angeles Galaxy today announced that Afshin Ghotbi has been named Assistant Coach. Ghotbi, a member of the Galaxy's technical staff since late in the 2004 season, will be elevated the vacancy on Steve Sampson's staff created by the recent departure of Martin Vasquez.

"Afshin was a valuable addition to our staff during the final stages of the 2004 season," said President and General Manager Doug Hamilton. "We expect that his vast expertise and on-field experience will once again provide them with significant insight into their performance in 2005 and beyond."

Ghotbi, 40, brings almost 20 years of experience as a coach to his latest position on the Galaxy sidelines. Prior to joining the club last season, his coaching stint first in Major League Soccer, he held several positions worldwide. Immediately prior to joining Sampson's staff, he had served as an assistant with the Samsung Bluewings in the K-League, South Korea's premier professional league.

"I am deeply honored to have Afshin as my assistant coach," said Sampson. "His incredible knowledge of the game's technical and tactical facets will be a valuable asset to the Galaxy as we push for an MLS Cup title in 2005."

Prior to his work with the Bluewings, the Rancho Santa Margarita resident served as an analyst for the Korea Republic national team in the run-up to and during FIFA World Cup Korea/Japan 2002. The 2002 World Cup was not his first; Ghotbi also served as a member of Sampson's technical staff for the USA at France '98.

He has also worked as Technical Director and Head Coach for the American Global Soccer School from 1998-2001. While at AGSS he was involved in developing the skills of players such as the Galaxy's Peter Vagenas and the U.S. national team's John O'Brien. Prior to that stint, he was a technical consultant to several clubs worldwide, including Ajax of Amsterdam and Willem II (Holland).

"I am extremely happy to be in my hometown coaching football and honored and excited to take on a new position with Galaxy," said Ghotbi. "I see a tremendous upside for the club in the not-so-distant future and look forward to making a valuable contribution to its success."

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