Lewis signs to play for Arena's Galaxy

August 21, 2008

CARSON, Calif. -- The Los Angeles Galaxy signed midfielder Eddie Lewis on Thursday, a day after Lewis played for the U.S. national team in a 1-0 victory at Guatemala in a World Cup qualifier.

To make room for the 34-year-old Lewis on their 18-man senior roster, the Galaxy traded forward Carlos Ruiz to Toronto FC for first and second-round selections in next year's MLS supplemental draft and salary budget considerations.

"I strongly believe that Eddie Lewis will be an outstanding addition to the Galaxy," Bruce Arena, the new general manager and coach of the Galaxy, said in a statement. "He brings great experience to the club and will be a wonderful addition to our locker room and is a player that the fans are sure to support.

"Unfortunately, the sport of soccer is also a business and in order to bring Eddie to the Galaxy, we were required to make salary budget space available, and our only available option was to move Carlos."

The Galaxy held the top spot in the MLS allocation table, and used that position to acquire Lewis. Contract terms weren't disclosed.

A veteran left-sided player with both MLS and European playing experience, Lewis joins the Galaxy following a one-year stay with Derby County of the English Premier League. After playing four years at UCLA, Lewis began his career with San Jose of MLS in 1996, playing there for four seasons. He later played with Fulham, Preston North End and Leeds United in England.

Lewis played for the national team in both the 2002 and 2006 World Cups. He has 10 goals and 16 assists in 81 matches with the national team.

Ruiz, who captained the Guatemalan national team Wednesday night in its loss to the U.S., appeared in 10 games for the Galaxy this season with one goal. He missed nearly two months after undergoing surgery on his right knee in April.

The second-leading scorer in franchise history, Ruiz returned to the Galaxy, his first MLS team, in January after spending three seasons with FC Dallas. He had 62 goals in 93 regular-season and postseason games with the Galaxy, which was scheduled to play its first match under Arena on Thursday night against the Chicago Fire at the Home Depot Center.


Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press