Omar Gonzalez

Omar Alejandro Gonzalez (born October 11, 1988) is an American soccer player who plays as a defender for Toronto FC in MLS and the U.S. Men's National Team.

Omar Gonzalez
Gonzalez with the United States in 2013
Personal information
Full name Omar Alejandro Gonzalez[1]
Date of birth (1988-10-11) October 11, 1988
Place of birth Dallas, Texas, United States
Height 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)
Playing position Defender
Club information
Current team
Toronto FC
Number 44
Youth career
2001–2006 Dallas Texans
2005 IMG Soccer Academy
College career
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2006–2008 Maryland Terrapins 69 (7)
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2009–2015 LA Galaxy 180 (12)
20121. FC Nürnberg (loan) 0 (0)
2016–2019 Pachuca 67 (1)
2018–2019Atlas (loan) 23 (2)
2019– Toronto FC 14 (1)
National team
2005 United States U17 2 (0)
2007 United States U18 3 (2)
2010– United States 52 (3)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of October 11, 2019
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of June 30, 2019

A college soccer player for the Maryland Terrapins, he joined the LA Galaxy in the 2009 MLS SuperDraft, and went on to play 180 regular season games for them, winning the MLS Cup in 2011, 2012 and 2014. He was named the MLS Rookie of the Year in 2009 and the MLS Defender of the Year in 2011.

A full international since 2010, he represented the United States at the 2014 FIFA World Cup and two CONCACAF Gold Cups, winning the 2013 edition.

Club career

Early life and college

Gonzalez played youth soccer for the Dallas Texans Soccer Club, and played college soccer at the University of Maryland, College Park, where he won the 2008 College Cup championship, was named to the NCAA/Adidas All-American First Team and First Team All-ACC and was named the ACC Defensive Player of the Year as a sophomore in 2007.

LA Galaxy

Gonzalez was drafted in the first round (3rd overall) of the 2009 MLS SuperDraft by Los Angeles Galaxy. Gonzalez began a regular feature in the Galaxy lineup from the start, and scored his first professional goal in April 4, 2009 against Colorado Rapids.[2] He was named MLS Rookie of the Year for helping lead the Galaxy from a last-place finish in 2008.[3]

In the 2010 season, Gonzalez scored a total of three goals including in the second leg of the Conference Semifinals.[4]

In January 2012, Gonzalez was loaned to 1. FC Nürnberg of the Bundesliga until mid-February.[5] During his first training session with his new club, Gonzalez suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament to his left knee after a collision with national teammate Timothy Chandler. He immediately headed back to the U.S. to undergo surgery.[6]

In August 2013, Gonzalez became Galaxy's third Designated Player after signing a new multi-year contract, rumored to be an annual average of more than $1.5 million.[7] Gonzalez is the first pure center back to ever earn a Designated Player contract in Major League Soccer.[8]

Pachuca

On December 22, 2015, Gonzalez was sold to Pachuca of Liga MX, ending his seven-season stay with the Galaxy.[9] During their press conference with a Star Wars theme, Gonzalez was unveiled as Star Wars character Darth Vader in presentation and was given the number 30.[10]

Gonzalez made his league debut on January 8, 2016, in a 1–1 draw against Club Tijuana at Estadio Caliente. In his debut, Gonzalez registered an assist to Franco Jara to tie the match in the 43rd minute. On February 7, 2016, Gonzalez scored his first goal for Pachuca late against Pumas UNAM to salvage a 1–1 draw.[11][12] Gonzalez won the Liga MX championship with Pachuca in his first season being a key player in the team's defense.[13] At the start of the Apertura 2016 Gonzalez changed jersey numbers and was given the number 4 after the loan of Hugo Isaác Rodríguez ended.

Toronto FC

On June 3rd, it was announced that Gonzalez would join Toronto FC from Pachuca once the transfer market officially opened on July 9. He was signed using Targeted Allocation Money (TAM).[14] He made his debut for Toronto on 14 July, against rivals Montreal Impact. [15] He scored his first goal for the club on 29 September against Chicago Fire. [16]

International career

On August 10, 2010, Gonzalez made his debut for the United States' first team in a friendly against Brazil.[17]

On March 26, 2013, Gonzalez was given the start in central defense in the United States' 0-0 draw in a World Cup qualifier against Mexico at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City. According to Jeff Carlisle of ESPN, Gonzalez "was the man of the match by a clear margin".[18]

Gonzalez was included on Jurgen Klinsmann's 23-man roster for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, Gonzalez started in the final group match against Germany, and the round of 16 match versus Belgium.[19]

On October 10, 2017, Gonzalez scored an own goal in the final game of 2018 World Cup qualifying against Trinidad and Tobago which resulted in a 2-1 loss which prevented the U.S. from qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

Career statistics

Club

As of OCtober 18, 2019 [20]
Club Season League League Cup Domestic Cup CONCACAF Other Total
AppsGoalsAppsGoalsAppsGoalsAppsGoalsAppsGoalsAppsGoals
LA Galaxy 2009 301400000341
2010 282311010333
2011 292401161404
2012 141610010212
2013 271200051342
2014 224500020294
2015 301101000321
Total 18012252311520022317
Pachuca 2015–16 161600000221
2016–17 290200090400
2017–18 18000620030272
Total 63180629030893
Toronto FC 2019 141000000141
Career total 25714332932420032621

International goals

As of matches played June 30, 2019. Scores and results list the United States's goal tally first.[21]
Goal Date Venue Opponent Score Result CompetitionRef
1.July 18, 2015M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore, United States Cuba
4–0
6–0
2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup
2.July 12, 2017Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, United States Martinique
1–0
3–2
2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup
3.July 19, 2017Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, United States El Salvador
1–0
2–0

Honors

Club

University of Maryland

LA Galaxy[23]

Pachuca[23]

International

United States[23]

Individual[9]

References

  1. "2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil: List of Players" (PDF). FIFA. June 11, 2014. p. 32. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
  2. "Colorado Rapids 3, Los Angeles Galaxy 2 (Close Finish) - 4/4/2009 - Football - Are You Watching This?!". Areyouwatchingthis.com. April 8, 2009. Retrieved June 7, 2014.
  3. "Galaxy soar from worst to first". Chinadaily.com.cn. October 27, 2009. Retrieved June 7, 2014.
  4. "LA Galaxy vs. Seattle Sounders 2 - 1". Retrieved 7 August 2016.
  5. Nick Firchau. "Galaxy hero Gonzalez loaned to FC Nurnberg". MLSsoccer.com. Retrieved January 7, 2012.
  6. "Gonzalez tears ACL at Nurnberg". Soccer By Ives. Retrieved January 7, 2012.
  7. "LA Galaxy sign defender Omar Gonzalez to Designated Player contract". LA Galacy. August 15, 2013. Retrieved January 7, 2014.
  8. "Gonzalez DP deal valued at more than $1.5 million per season". August 15, 2013.
  9. "LA Galaxy transfer defender Omar Gonzalez to C.F. Pachuca". MLSsoccer.com. December 22, 2015. Retrieved December 22, 2015.
  10. "Star Wars villain Darth Vader unveiled as Pachuca signing... before removing mask to reveal LA Galaxy defender Omar Gonzalez". 23 December 2015.
  11. "Pumas 1-1 Pachuca (2/7/16)". February 7, 2016.
  12. "Ex-LA Galaxy defender Omar Gonzalez scores dramatic first goal for Pachuca". MLS. 7 February 2016.
  13. "Pachuca, Campeón del Clausura 2016". 29 May 2016.
  14. https://www.torontofc.ca/post/2019/06/03/toronto-fc-signs-us-international-defender-omar-gonzalez
  15. https://mlsmultiplex.com/2019/07/13/montreal-impact-vs-toronto-fc-3-things-look-omar-gonzalez-debut/
  16. https://www.cbc.ca/sports/soccer/mls/toronto-fc-chicago-fire-mls-recap-1.5302276
  17. "United States vs. Brazil 0 - 2 (11/10/10)". Soccerway. August 10, 2010.
  18. "Women's International Friendly". Espn Fc. Retrieved June 7, 2014.
  19. "Omar Gonzalez, starting for U.S. in World Cup". Kevin Baxter. Retrieved January 28, 2015.
  20. https://www.mlssoccer.com/players/omar-gonzalez
  21. "González, Omar". National Football Teams. Retrieved 19 July 2017.
  22. "2008 NCAA Division I Men's Soccer Championship" (PDF). Men's Division I Championship Brackets. National Collegiate Athletic Association. p. 48. Archived from the original on 31 August 2011. Retrieved 31 August 2011.
  23. Omar Gonzalez at Soccerway
  24. "TSG reveals Gold Cup Best XI". goldcup.org.
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