The LA Galaxy have sent defender A.J. Delagarza to the Houston Dynamo in exchange for $125,000 in general allocation money and $50,000 in targeted allocation money, both clubs confirmed Friday.
DeLaGarza, a Maryland native, has spent his entire professional career with the Galaxy after being drafted 19th overall in the 2009 MLS draft. The 29-year-old made 220 MLS appearances for the Galaxy in eight seasons.
“This decision was extremely difficult to make,” Galaxy general manager Peter Vagenas said in a statement. “A.J. is a champion and will always mean so much to this club, this city and our fans. We thank him for his many contributions to the Galaxy and know he will forever be a part of our family. With that said, we feel that this will give us flexibility to strengthen our roster going forward with the use of additional allocation money.”
DeLaGarza joins fellow former Galaxy defender Leonardo, who moved to the Dynamo as a free agent earler this offseason, in Houston. The pair won three MLS Cups together.
“A.J. DeLaGarza is an excellent player and an excellent person, and we are really pleased and really excited because we’re bringing a wonderful player that no doubt, is going to important for the Houston Dynamo,” Dynamo head coach Wilmer Cabrera said. “He has won championships with the LA Galaxy; he will bring that pedigree, stability, a high level of play and a new energy to the locker room that will make the team better in all aspects.”
In addition to his professional experience, DeLaGarza has earned 10 international caps for Guam, with whom he qualifies to play for via his father.