Galaxy signs local star Gyasi Zardes, closes in on Carlo Cudicini
It’s been less than three weeks since the Galaxy won its second consecutive Major League Soccer title, but the team’s front office has taken little time off to celebrate. Thursday it announced its second deal with a homegrown player in 10 days, signing forward Gyasi Zardes of Hawthorne and Cal State Bakersfield.
The team, which has already worked out two trades this offseason, is said to be close to a transfer deal with Tottenham Hotspur of the English Premier League for goalkeeper Carlo Cudicini.
Zardes, 21, scored 33 times in 37 games his last two seasons at Bakersfield and would likely have been an early first-round pick if he had gone into next month’s super draft of college players. But the Galaxy had rights to him first since Zardes played on the U-18 and U-20 teams at the Galaxy’s developmental academy.
“The chance to play in front of family and friends and alongside the likes of Robbie Keane and Landon Donovan truly is a dream come true,” said Zardes, a Leuzinger High product who joins defender Oscar Sorto, the other homegrown player signed this month, as a roster addition.
As for the Galaxy’s situation in goal, Sports Illustrated is reporting the team has negotiated a two-year agreement with Cudicini, a veteran of 13 years in the English Premier League, and is now trying to work out the details of a transfer deal before the window opens next month.
Should that happen the 39-year-old Italian, who has played just one first-squad game this season, would be the third ‘keeper to open the season in goal for the Galaxy after Donovan Ricketts, who was traded after the 2011 season, and last year’s No. 1, Josh Saunders, whose contract expired.
The Galaxy had reportedly inquired about getting Dan Kennedy from Chivas USA, its Home Depot Center roommate, but Chivas has decided to keep Kennedy, who has a year left on his contract.
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