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Beckham Down, Bravo Up

Big surprise: David Beckham will not play in Denver tomorrow after playing 90 Wednesday, playing 90 Thursday and aggravating his ankle injury during his team's embarrassing performance against Chivas USA.

Coach Frank Yallop admitted, "I used him tonight and I shouldn't have done that. I don't like to put any player, not just David, in jeopardy of getting injured. That wasn't the intention. I feel bad for him. He's going to be sore. I think his body is sore from what he's done over the last 10 days."

Meantime, Paul Bravo, an assistant coach, has been named the Galaxy's director of soccer. Is this the first step in Alexi Lalas's exit?

By Steve Goff  |  August 25, 2007; 9:14 AM ET
Categories:  MLS  
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Next: U.S. Euro Update


It could be that Lalas is on his way out.

I wonder what his qualifications were to be a GM in the first place. He was a great player, but that does not mean he has the business acumen to run a multi-mmillion dollar organization such as a professional occer team.

All I know is that the supposed 'jewel of MLS', as Lalas calls LA, is a total mess. It is possible the whole front office and a good part of the coaching staff needs to go...

Posted by: Ron | August 25, 2007 9:48 AM | Report abuse

I'd agree there's going to be an overhaul in LA. With Venkman [sic] there, MLS wants LA to be a popular (for TV and audience) and good (for TV/audience/build the brand) team. I don't see a huge turnaround in the off-season with the crowd that's in place right now. I see Alexi out along with Yallop, at the minimum.

Posted by: Beaker | August 25, 2007 10:07 AM | Report abuse

If Bravo is now "director of soccer" what does that make Lalas? Director of Buffoonery?

Posted by: Glenn | August 25, 2007 10:24 AM | Report abuse

I just wish they would state what exactly "director of soccer" means. Thats like me proclaiming myself "president of good looks", what the hell does it mean?

Posted by: Felix | August 25, 2007 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Once you are in coaching/management circle, you're in -- just like any other sport. That's why Lalas keeps getting jobs.

Posted by: RK | August 25, 2007 11:15 AM | Report abuse

I fully expect to see Lalas and Waldo together in the booth for ESPN next season. I also expect to see myself puking every Thursday evening in disgust.

Posted by: Hoost | August 25, 2007 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Does anyone else remember that video that lalas did when he was still with the donkeys-when the metrotards were taken over by the redbulls? It reminded me of the videos that kidnap victims are forced to shoot, extolling the virtues of their captors.

Posted by: i hate the redbulls | August 25, 2007 12:28 PM | Report abuse

By moving Payl Bravo to this new executive position the Galaxy management is taking out what the like from he coaching staff before the bring in a new regime to take over. This is a clear sign that the Yallop era is almost over.

It's basic Buiness 101: When a group or division of a company gets restructured, management usually pulls out a few of the workers that they want to keep in the organization before making the changes. I'm pretty confident that this is what's going on here with Bravo's new position. The only question is who do they have lined up to take over? It's no longer going to be Interim Head Coach Paul Bravo! It would seem that they have someone waiting in the wings. Could the Klinsmann rumors really be true?

Give us the info Goff!

Posted by: howie | August 25, 2007 12:28 PM | Report abuse

What's going to meltdown first: Beckham's ankle or the bush league organization around him?

Next thing for that ankle is ligament damage if this keeps up...

Posted by: morphit | August 25, 2007 12:51 PM | Report abuse

i like lalas as a person and think he can somehow be an asset to the us soccer community, but i just can't figure out where he fits. he can't seem to make the right decision on personnel and meet the expectations that are given to him. he's a great advocate for the game and has great public speaking skills, maybe he fits better in a marketing role for a club or in the media.

Posted by: hokie soccer fan | August 25, 2007 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Another Lalas rant --

Ron -- Are you on crack? Lalas was in no way, shape, or form, a great player. he was an average defender at best. He was popular/famous because of his dumb haircut and goatee. He has no business running a car wash let alone an MLS franchise.

AS I've said before many times on this board. Lalas is an @ssclown of a GM.

Are you people getting sick of me using that term to describe Lalas? Cause I'll never get tired of using it.

Posted by: Steve-O | August 25, 2007 1:33 PM | Report abuse

this is a long-term move designed to avoid the crap the galaxy have gone through the last 4 years (namely a coach being brought in, replacing half the team, then failing to get them to play well together. repeat).

with bravo as DOS he will/should handle building the team, from players to coaches to training staff. any coach who comes in to the galaxy organization will have to work within that structure. there will no longer be massive player changes.

all-in-all a good decision, one that had it been made before the season started would probably see LA in a much better position.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 25, 2007 1:43 PM | Report abuse

I can totally see Lalas organizing the U-9 games at half time at RFK. He'd be perfect bringing the boys and girls out. Then again, he'd probably ruin the games by pulling a Billy Madison and ripping 8 yard scorchers on Little Johnny. I'm going to borrow Steve-O's comment for Alexi and Yallop...a$$ clown$.

Posted by: London Dan | August 25, 2007 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Kudos to Paul. Good to see another south San Jose soccer product having some success. He has his work cut out for him with that organization. At least he'll weather the storm that is about to blow through, hopefully taking out both Yallop and Lalas. No offense to Frank, but don't make the trip north.

Posted by: LeesburgSoccerFan | August 25, 2007 3:45 PM | Report abuse

London Dan -- You are the man!!!

Posted by: Steve-O | August 25, 2007 5:14 PM | Report abuse


Yes Lalas is an idiot and has proved to be a disastor as a GM for two different teams.

However to say he was never a good soccer player is a stretch. Sure Padova never was going to win the Serie A, but they still were in the Serie A. If he was a disaster there, he would not have lasted to a second season.

Lets give the guy (and all the other guys of he era credit). With everything on the line, they advanced out of a reasonably tough group in 1994 and several of them made the jump to Europe when Americans REALLY got no respect.

Sure he is a buffoon, and eventually was a stiff in the MLS, but you have to respect his performance at the WC, in making it to Italy, and in staying in Italy.

Posted by: srfinger | August 25, 2007 5:25 PM | Report abuse

srfinger -- while I respect your opinion, mine differs from yours (we all know that opinions are like @ssh*les, we all have em).

I don't want to get on an extended rant of why I think Lalas was an average player. I may give him the benefit of the doubt and say he was a little above average, but that is it.

Yes the US got out of group play in 1994. A remarkable, yet also lucky, accomplishment. I believe a fortuitous own goal put us through.

Yes Padova thought he was good enough to play for them. He scored 2 goals in 44 appearances and they had to win a playoff to avoid relegation in his only full season. Is that all his fault, of course not, but he wasn't that good.

I truly believe he was a novelty, which is why MTV ate him and Cobi Jones up. Lalas with his hair and goatee, and Cobi with his dreads. After Cobi got over himself and got back in to shape, he had a fantastic career in for the Nats and the Galaxy. Lalas not so much.

So much for a short post on this. I don't hate the guy at all, and think he actually could be quite fun to hang out with and share a beer with. I just think that he was an average player, whose athleticism made up for his shortcomings as a player. However, and I think we all agree, that as a GM (once again), he is an @ssclown.

Posted by: Steve-O | August 25, 2007 6:35 PM | Report abuse

I have to agree with you Steve-O. Mostly because @ssclown is fun to say. :)

On a serious note, how about Lalas in the broadcasting booth with Waldo. I'd tune in just to enjoy the taste of that pre-vomit stomach bile that anyone who has ever puked knows so well. ;)

Posted by: AlexandriaDan | August 25, 2007 11:10 PM | Report abuse

Or first step in canning Yallop?

Posted by: Allen | August 28, 2007 2:41 PM | Report abuse

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