Author Archives: tommyoc
LA-area MLS fans: Chivas USA has partnered with Groupon to offer the following deal:
Offer expires on February 13.
If you haven’t hopped on the MLS bandwagon, this is a great opportunity to do so on the cheap and I highly suggest you take advantage of it!
The offseason loss of creative midfielder Juninho was supposed to be a stake in the heart of LA Galaxy’s hopes of an MLS Cup repeat. The 23-year-old Brazilian’s loan was not extended by his parent club, Sao Paulo, as they wished to bring his maturing talents back home, going so far as to lock him in to a new 3-year contract.
Galaxy began seeking out and acquiring several hopeful replacements, most promising amongst them fellow Brazilian Marcelo Sarvas and former Union man Kyle Nakazawa.
Additionally, after a series of below-the-radar moves, Los Angeles announced over the weekend that they had… re-acquired Juninho on loan. The best man to fill a set of empty shoes is the same man who once wore them, it turns out, and Galaxy have gone from finding an acceptable replacement to having a set of midfield options unrivaled in the league.
And when you add in the return of David Beckham and last week’s re-acquisition of former Galaxy striker and Golden Boot finalist Edson Buddle, you have to ask yourself: Is this the official start of the most potent MLS strike force… ever?
Share your thoughts in the comments.
…you start to wonder if you’re supporting the wrong side.
You see, I am a Los Angeles Galaxy fan. Before Beckham. Before the Home Depot Center. Before our first championship star. At the beginning of Cobi, Cienfuegos and Hartman, the Rose Bowl, and multiple MLS Cup heartbreaks – I was there.
In short: I bleed teal/green/blue-and-gold.
So when a new tenant entered our hallowed soccer cathedral and set down stakes to claim a portion of its halls as their own, an instant rivalry was – no, not born – thrust upon us. The very presence of Chivas USA in “Our City, Our Home” was a call to arms.
And as an ardent Galaxy supporter, I am obligated to show our cross-town/same-stadium rivals, Chivas USA, and their fans as little love as possible. Very. Little. Love. Ever.
Yankees have Red Sox. Dodgers have Giants. Sounders have Timbers. And Galaxy has Chivas USA (and Steven Lenhart.)
And while the league standings in recent years has kept the gameday match-ups from reaching the contentious fever pitch it has in years past, the rivalry’s fires are kept stoked for the next time a meeting counts for more than just bragging rights. While they may be remiss to admit it, many Angelinos are secretely grateful to have an in-town rivalry, one that has the potential to polarize the City of Angels in the fashion seen in other cities and towns around the world; and thus regardless of the import of their matchups, both teams’ fans keep the antagonistic spirit alive for fear that it would otherwise die out.
And that is how this Galaxy fan has operated for years. For no matter how much (or how little) of a threat those Goats’ bleatings may actually pose, the fire it stirs in me is red-hot and my conviction to hurl bile in their direction is strengthened to no end.
But a series of observations from last year – and a realization from a week ago tying it all together – has me reconsidering my blind distaste for Chivas USA and at least one of their supporter groups. You see, I’ve come to the conclusion that both team and supporters are leading the league in one area very near and dear to me (and to many of our #g4s readers): the open invitation to, and inclusion of, their GLBT fans.
And this has me wondering: am I booing the wrong side?
If there is one thing many of the MLS Original clubs have in common, it is a history of kit design with little continuity and even less tradition. Los Angeles shares the top spot on this unfortunate list – alongside Kansas City – with a radical departure in design coming every year or two since their inception.
But the beginning of the Bechkam era (MLS 2.0) coincided with a league-wide push for brand identity and as a result, in the years since, the casual fan can identify the teams around the league using only the clues provided by a color swatch.
And as far as brand identity goes, Los Angeles Galaxy has led the way. Their all-white home kit with accents of blue and gold is not only recognized by casual soccer fans the world over, but by American soccerphobes as well, an arguably bigger achievement. On top of that, the Galaxy’s #23 jersey is one of the most-sold jerseys in the world. In any sport. Ever.
The Beckham-era Galaxy jersey, love it or hate it, works.
So why does the 2012 version radically depart from it?
Owning a jersey is just fine. A scarf gives you street cred. But when you want to express your undying love for your team, nothing says it more than attending a game.
For those super-passionate lot that can afford it, attending every one of your home team’s games is not exceptional – it’s expected.
And while the passion of a dedicated, season ticket-holding fan, regardless of city, can never be compared, the costs required of them to show that passion most certainly can be, as the following list will attempt to show.
The New Year is here and with it, a wide open transfer window. And while the list of smart acquisitions and shock buys is just now beginning to take shape, most had assumed one man had been waiting for so long for the window to open he had fogged up the glass. It turns out that this may not have been the case. At all. read more…
One of the great things about MLS – and one of the things that has always been great about MLS – is the fan’s accessibility to their favorite players. These last couple of years have seen a rapid increase in players – both big-name stars and up-and-comers – take to social media to share their soccer-related thoughts as well as their day-to-day doings. It all comes together to create a product that fans not only support, but also identify with.
The Los Angeles Galaxy – arguably the biggest brand in the league – is no different. In addition to the hard-working social media folks in the front office whose updates are dispatched morning, day and night, several LA Galaxy players share the Twitterverse with their fans. This list of accessible players includes two Rookies of the Year and, perhaps leading by example, the team’s captain. A sublisting of my personal favorites are after the break. read more…