It wouldn't be Chivas USA offseason without a little bit of controversy/people blowing things way out of proportion. Where to start?
New coach. Jose Luis Sanchez Sola. Better known by his nickname as “El Chelís” has been quite the outspoken individual. He’s been honest about what he wants from the team. From stating that Dan Kennedy is his captain to telling the media that Shalrie Joseph is not in his plans going forward, he’s unafraid to mince words.
Transactions. Gone are a number of players from last year. Ask any supporter of this team (you know, the people who actually watched the team in person and on TV), and they’ll tell you the players discarded were done so for good reasons. Casey Townsend was a waste of a first round draft pick (Taylor Twellman he never was). Shalrie Joseph was a blunder of a move by the previous front office that’s taking up a huge chunk of cap space. Juan Pablo Angel was past his due date along with Alejandro Moreno. Danny Califf appeared lost on the backline. Nick LaBrocca had a great 2011 and disappeared in 2012. Cesar Romero never accomplished anything other than having the name of an actor known for playing a Batman villain. What’s that? You never heard of him? He was one of only 2 Mexican-Americans on the roster last year. This brings me to my next point……
Mexicans. If you’re going to call yourself CHIVAS, then you should have some kind of Mexican representation on the team. 2 players of Mexican descent (one who hardly ever played) does an injustice to the name. Now this examiner isn’t saying that the team should be all Mexican. Diversity is a wonderful thing. But if you are going to stick with the name (despite what all of the torch and pitchfork wielding internet crazies have spewed over the years) then you should have some players of Mexican descent there. It should go without saying. In 2012, the Galaxy had 5 players of Mexican descent on their team. The Earthquakes and Sounders had 3 each. CHIVAS USA, 2? Seriously? That’s why this examiner likes the fact that a guy like Eric Avila is here. Is he a game changer? Probably not. But for a team looking for an identity, players like Avila, Giovanni Casillas, Edgar Mejia, Rodrigo Lopez, and Juan Pablo Ocegueda (assuming his transfer is true) will help the team find one. Mix that in with guys like Dan Kennedy, Miller Bolaños, Bobby Burling, Juan Agudelo, Tristan Bowen, Oswaldo Minda, Jorge Villafaña, Ben Zemanski, Jose Correa, Steve Purdy and James Riley and you got something great: A team with Mexican roots (which there’s nothing wrong with, right), being welcoming of all.
I for one, regardless of the outcome, look forward to 2013. Sure, Ji-Sung Park never showed up, and the previous front office dropped the ball on Corona Stadium at the Fairplex, but I’ll be there to support the team.