MLS Buys Chivas USA, Will Keep Club in Los Angeles Under New Ownership

chivasusaAnd that, in a nutshell, is what MLS announced today and Commissioner Don Garber expanded on in a conference call with reporters this afternoon.

The Chivas USA experiment is mercifully over and few local soccer fans will weep at the club’s demise.

The search for local owners is on, but Garber said neither David Beckham nor Arsenal owner Stan Kroenke, who recently bought land in Inglewood for a rumored NFL stadium, will be involved.

MLS beat reporter Phil Collin will have more later (as will I), but for now here are a few key Garber quotes from the teleconference.

On whether it was an issue with the market in Southern California or the suburban South Bay:

“We absolutely believe Los Angeles and Southern California can support two (MLS) teams,” he said. “I don’t think it is a market issue at all, it was an execution issue. We’ve learned a lot.”

On how quickly MLS hopes to find new owners for the club:

“This is a heavy lift. We bought this team at market price. We didn’t assume it. We had to convince the Vergaras to sell it to us as opposed to others,” he said. “Our goal is to get a new owner by the end of the year. I think that’s ambitious, but that’s our goal.

 

“There is no rush,” he added. “We want to get this right. You can only relaunch (a club) once. And we’ve got to get it right the second time around.”

On whether MLS was involved in trademarking Los Angeles FC and other potential team names recently or (now former) Chivas USA owner Jorge Vergara and his wife:

“My guess is they were thinking about whether they would rebrand,” he said. “It’s not really relevant to what were talking about here.”

 

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  • George

    This is a good thing, but for the sake of the Galaxy and expansion of the league’s footprint, I hope that they end up moving cities.