Sports

Rob Friend signs with LA Galaxy

After an 11-year pro career in Europe, Kelowna-raised soccer product Rob Friend has signed with the Major Soccer League
After an 11-year pro career in Europe, Kelowna-raised soccer product Rob Friend has signed with the Major Soccer League's LA Galaxy.
— image credit: Contributed

After playing his minor soccer in Canada and his collegiate soccer in the United States, Rob Friend left North America to pursue a professional career.

More than a decade later, the Kelowna product will soon be back in North America as a member of Major League Soccer's L.A. Galaxy.

The Galaxy this week announced the signing of the 32-year Friend from the German club, TSV 1860 Munich.

Friend's entire pro career has been spent in Europe—in Norway, the Netherlands and Germany.

Over the course of 11 years in the pro ranks, the 6-foot-5 forward scored 75 goals in nearly 260 appearances with eight clubs.

“The addition of Rob Friend to our roster brings a different dimension to our attack,” said LA Galaxy general manager and head coach Bruce Arena. “Rob is a veteran player with a scoring pedigree and we are excited to bolster our roster by bringing him to LA.”

After opening his pro career with Moss in Norway's second division, Friend helped Molde of the first division to the Norway Football Cup in 2005.

In 2006-07, Friend moved to Holland where he split time between Heerenveen and Heracles Almelo in the Dutch Eredivisie.

In 2007, he moved to Germany and signed with Borussia Monchengladbach where he enjoyed his finest season as a pro. He scored 18 goals in 33 league games in 2007-08, leading his side to the Bundesliga 2 title and promotion to the German Bundesliga.

Friend made other stops in Germany with Hertha Berlin, Eintracht Frankfurt and finally, TSV 1860 Munich in 2013.

Friend also has 32 caps with Canada's national program, scoring twice and adding two assists.

The LA Galaxy will open the 2014 MLS regular season in March.

 

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