The Galaxy on Friday rewarded Coach Sigi Schmid for bringing the Major League Soccer title to Los Angeles last season, giving him a multiyear contract that will keep him in charge of the team for at least the next two seasons and probably longer.
Schmid, who became the Galaxy's coach in April 1999, has led it to victory in the CONCACAF Champions Cup in 2000, the U.S. Open Cup in 2001 and the MLS Cup in 2002. He has a 76-41-19 overall record in MLS.
"We've got somebody who is uniquely positioned to coach this club, given his technical and tactical expertise, his leadership abilities, his success in our league and his history in Southern California," said Doug Hamilton, Galaxy vice president and general manager.
Schmid, 50, who won three NCAA championships in 19 years as UCLA's coach, said he was pleased with the new pact, which Hamilton said was for "more than two years," without revealing details.
"I'm excited and very proud that I'm able to extend my stay," Schmid said. "Coaching is something that's obviously dear to my heart. It's something I want to do as long as possible.
"I think it [the new contract] is a vindication of the work that we've done for the last four years. I think that we've put the Galaxy at the top of the heap, in terms of MLS. We're the defending champions.
"Two years ago, we talked about getting some trophies. We got some trophies. Last year, we talked about getting the centerpiece [the MLS Cup]. We got the centerpiece.
"Now, we've got to start talking about establishing our legacy and establishing our dominance in this league. So that's what this season is about for us."
Japan twice came from behind Friday to tie Uruguay, 2-2, in front of 54,039 at the National Stadium in Tokyo in a friendly international in which three of the goals came in a four-minute span.
Manchester United's Diego Forlan gave the South Americans the lead with a header in the 21st minute, but midfielder Shunsuke Nakamura tied the score on a penalty kick two minutes later.
An error by Japanese goalkeeper Yoshikatsu Kawaguchi allowed Uruguay to go ahead again in the 25th minute when Kawaguchi spilled an Alvaro Recoba corner kick and Alejandro Lembo was on hand to tuck the ball into the net.
Japan's Brazilian coach, Zico, brought Brazilian-born Alex into the game in the second half and it was his interchange with Hidetoshi Nakata that produced an opening for Junichi Inamoto to score the tying goal in the 57th minute.
The most intriguing of more than two-dozen international matches scheduled for today has Portugal playing Brazil in a game in Porto that pits Portugal Coach Luiz Felipe Scolari against the team he led to the World Cup last summer.
Not only will Scolari be up against his former players, but he will be facing another World Cup-winning coach, Carlos Alberto Parreira, who coached Brazil to its 1994 World Cup triumph in the United States.
"All the condiments are on the table to make this a good game," Parreira told the Portuguese newspaper A Bola. "Of course it is a friendly, but a well-seasoned one.
"Brazil has just been crowned world champion for the fifth time and Portugal will soon stage Euro 2004. So it is a big game between two teams with a lot at stake. Brazil wants to maintain prestige and Portugal wants to get in form for the European Championship."
Portugal has not beaten its former colony in 37 years -- the last time during the 1966 World Cup in England, when the legendary Eusebio scored twice in a 3-1 victory over Pele's Brazil -- but Ronaldo warned that defeating Luis Figo and company will be a challenge.
"It's not going to be easy," he told Reuters. "Scolari knows us well."
Among noteworthy Euro 2004 qualifying games today, Germany is at home against Lithuania; defending European champion France plays Malta; Italy plays Finland, Liechtenstein plays host to England, the Netherlands faces the Czech Republic, and Ukraine plays Spain.