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RIP Chivas USA

Chivas USA, we hardly knew you. Your time in MLS was brief, and made no real lasting impression.

The club formerly known as Chivas USA has played its last game, and we at The18 would like to wish the MLS’s ill-fated and somewhat contrived attempt at drawing more Hispanic fans good riddance. If anything, this experiment only showed that Mexican fans are far more appreciative of good soccer than the powers-that-be in the MLS’s league office gave them credit for.


Chivas USA was a spin-off of Chivas Guadalajara, a much more popular and better team (although they are in the midst of a down year this year). By creating an American offshoot of Chivas, MLS was really trying to lure Chivas Guadalajara fans to the MLS. And, let's be real, it did not work because there is only one Chivas. The same way naming your son Brad Pitt will not turn him into a movie star, naming a team after another team will not automatically earn the allegiance of the latter team. Chivas USA would have needed to be on par with regular (a.k.a. superior) Chivas in order for this to work, and Chivas USA was not that. See Exhibit A:

So we bid adieu to Chivas USA, and usher in a new era of second-fiddle LA soccer (let’s be honest, the Galaxy owns that market): Los Angeles FC. The brainchild of several people, including an ESPN basketball analyst and a Vietnamese entrepreneur, and boasting the likes of Magic Johnson and Mia Hamm as investors, LAFC already has dollar signs lighting up in different people’s eyes.

Also, Vincent Tan is involved. This warrants mentioning.

Nguyen has said he wants LAFC to eventually become one of the biggest and best clubs in the world ("a bold strategy Cotton, let’s see how it works out for them"). A lofty goal, sure, and something that has been said many times in American soccer but never actually achieved. Still, at least that they’re shooting for the stars.

If America does get a club that can compete with the real Chivas, Real Madrids, Chelseas, Barcelonas, and Bayern Munichs (AC Milan and Manchester United are on leave from this list until they start playing like they belong on it), it will likely be in New York or Los Angeles. I don’t see Christiano Ronaldo up and moving to Kansas City or Columbus. New York and Los Angeles have enough draw as two of the biggest and most well-known cities in the world, so they could conceivably lure international superstars that are actually in their primes. It’s a long shot, but stranger things have happened.

So we can be sad for Chivas USA (or not), and look toward the future with hope.


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