L.A. Galaxy sign midfielder Peter Vagenas to new multi-year contract

CARSON, CA - The Los Angeles Galaxy have signed veteran midfielder Peter Vagenas to a new multi-year contract, the team announced today. Per club policy, terms of the deal were not announced.

"Having Peter back in a Galaxy uniform is good for our fans and for our club, both on and off the field," said Galaxy President and General Manager Doug Hamilton. "His experience and ability are important assets as we build our club going forward."

Vagenas, 26, is entering his sixth season in Major League Soccer and with the Galaxy. The club selected the holding midfielder in the second round of the 2000 MLS SuperDraft (23rd overall) from UCLA.

"We are very happy to have Peter back as part of the Galaxy as we start to form our 2005 team," said Galaxy Head Coach Steve Sampson. "His leadership and playing ability are invaluable to this team and to its success. We are looking for big things from him this year and expect him to contribute significantly."

In five previous MLS seasons, the native of Pasadena, California has participated in 91 games for his hometown side, starting 81 of those matches. He has logged 7268 minutes played and hit home for six goals and registered eight assists for a total of 20 points.

Since joining the Galaxy, Vagenas has been an integral part of the team that has captured three major club championships, the 2000 CONCACAF Champions Cup, 2001 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup and 2002 MLS Cup.

Vagenas enjoyed his best season as a professional in 2001 - playing in 26 games (to lead the Galaxy), 25 of them as a member of the starting eleven and playing 2197 minutes. His three goals and three assists during that campaign tie his career highs and his nine points for the year are a personal best.

Additionally, the midfielder has tasted success at the national team level. His three goals in five matches helped lead the USA to their best-ever placement at an Olympic Football Tournament, reaching the semifinals before losing to European powers Spain at the Sydney Games in 2000.

"I would like to personally thank both Doug Hamilton and Steve Sampson for giving me the opportunity to return to the Galaxy," said Vagenas. "After spending more than five years as a part of this organization, it remains an honor and a privilege for me to put on the uniform and represent both the best club in the United States and my hometown each week. Expectations with the Galaxy are higher than they are anywhere else in MLS, and that motivation makes me want to go into work and continue to improve as player each day, especially as the club strives to win MLS Cup 2005."

In 2004, the midfielder appeared in a career-low of just 12 games. Plagued by an adductor injury, Vagenas was forced to sit out 17 straight matches in the early and middle portions of the season while undergoing and recovering from surgery. However, he returned to his regular spot in the lineup in September and assisted on then-teammate Arturo Torres' game-winning goal against the San Jose Earthquakes on September 11, giving him his first point since the 2002 season. He also played in all three of the Galaxy's Western Conference playoff games.

Los Angeles Galaxy 10th Season Celebration Packs are now on sale. For as little as just $37, fans can purchase tickets to the Galaxy's season opener against Real Salt Lake on Saturday, April 9 at 7 pm at The Home Depot Center and the first game against CD Chivas USA, tentatively scheduled for April 23. Orders received before January 31 will also include a Galaxy Decade of Stars T-shirt. For more information or to purchase your Celebration Pack today, call the Galaxy Ticket Office toll free at 1-877-3GALAXY.

TRANSACTION: Los Angeles Galaxy (MLS) sign M Peter Vagenas to a new multi-year contract.

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