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Chivas USA lands in a city


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Twelve teams set for play in 2005

Associated Press

CARSON, Calif. -- Major League Soccer expanded to Los Angeles for next season, granting a franchise Monday to Jorge Vergara, owner of popular Mexican team CD Guadalajara.

The team, tentatively known as Chivas USA, will play at the Home Depot Center in Carson, the Los Angeles Galaxy's home field. Chivas, or Goats, is CD Guadalajara's nickname.

Major League Soccer's other expansion team will play in Salt Lake City, giving the league 12 franchises.

MLS commissioner Don Garber announced last year the league would grant Vergara one of two expansion teams for 2005. Chicago, Houston and San Diego were in contention for Vergara's team.

Garber said Los Angeles offered the best opportunity for success.

"We needed a great facility, a place that would provide the atmosphere and the excitement to capture the potential of this unique team,'' Garber said, "and we wanted a market that would understand the significance of this undertaking.''

Vergara told a crowd of nearly 300, most of them wearing Chivas' red-and-white striped jersey, that the new club will be competitive from the start.

"Of course, we're going to be the best team in the United States,'' Vergara said. "I promise all of you that Chivas USA is going to be from the start just like Chivas in Mexico: a team of excellence and an open door for Spanish speakers.''

The crowd greeted the announcement with cheers and chants. One group of supporters, Legion 1908 L.A., threw streamers and confetti, waved flags, and unfurled a large banner that covered the group.

"It's a giant party,'' said Obideo Mojarro of Pasadena, leader of the group. "We've been waiting for this for a long time. Chivas is a big family that enchants all of Mexico.''

Vergara also introduced two players who will join Chivas USA: midfielder Ramon Ramirez and forward Francisco Palencia. Ramirez played for Mexico in the 1994 and 1998 World Cups.

CD Guadalajara reached the finals of the Mexican First Division championship this spring before losing to UNAM Pumas of Mexico City on penalty kicks.

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What annoys me is that he says "Chivas is a big family that enchants all of Mexico."

and that it will be "an open door for Spanish speakers"

Uhmmm.... if you want all that... put your team in Mexico.

Chivas Monterrey makes a lot more sence to me.

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Wow just spit on the Galaxy, who worked hard to get the Home Depot Center, now they have to share it or move out. MLS, bad bad move. Ya move the Quakes and not the Galaxy now, you have trouble.

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I thought MLS was in financial trouble or something? I guess not if its expanding.

Often times a league in trouble expands to bring in fresh money from expansion fees to keep the rest of the operation afloat. I doubt this is the case here, but I think MLS' philosophy is that Chivas will help keep the Galaxy viable in LA. And if not, then Chivas will survive in LA while the Galaxy fold or move elsewhere.

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Actually, about a month or so ago, Sports Illustrated had an interesting article about the hardships of MLS and NFL Europe, comparing the two leagues. There was a decent bit about Chivas USA and it made a whole lot of sense to put the team in LA, actually.

If I find the article online, I'll post a link to it... it was very interesting.

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Here's what happens:

+ Earthquakes moves from San Jose to Philadelphia, changes name to Philadelphia Arsenal, Philadelphia Eagles takes over team, plays at Lincoln Financial Field.

+ Galaxy moves to Bay Area, plays at San Jose Spartan Stadium, changes name to Earthquakes, Anschultz builds new stadium in Bay Area.

+ Chivas USA changes name to L. A. Galaxy.


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