Remember last week when it was announced that Edson Buddle was coming back from Germany, and returning to L.A? Remember how you thought, well that kind of sucks, but still, they were always going to be good up front, it was defensively they needed help, this doesn't really change anything, we can still take them. Remember how yesterday they released Chris Birchall, and you thought 'hmmm, creating cap space? Nothing good can come of this' Well the L.A related news got depressing today as it was announced that Brazilians Juninho and Leonardo have been re-signed for 2012.
Leonardo is a defender who if fit, could very nicely fill the hole left by the injured Omar Gonzalez. Hopefully as far as Toronto FC's CCL qualification hopes go, Leonardo himself may still be injured. In April of 2011 he tore his ACL and LCL, and he might not be back in time for March 7th, at least according to this article which has Bruce Arena saying he'll be fully able to play in April.
Juninho though is all set to go in March, and that's really going to make a difference. Despite being a Brazilian midfielder, he's not nearly as glamorous a player as Buddle, Donovan, Keane, or Chad Barrett. But much like Claude Makelele with Real Madrid's Galacticos, Juninho was hugely important for the Galaxy's midfield last season. His signing with Sao Paolo was very much a good thing for those hoping to beat L.A, his return to L.A on loan is a much bigger deal than the return of Buddle, and will make L.A a much tougher proposition. If you want to alarm yourself, check out LAG Confidential trying to figure out who their best lineup would be from their 'bevy of riches', smug bastards.
Remember this over excited article from torontofc.ca suggesting TFC was having a much better off season than L.A? Yeah, not so much any more. With exactly a month to go until the big game, they're now once again looking very much like the 2011 Supporters Shield and MLS Cup champions.