Soccer Fans Must Wait a While–Maybe a Long While–for Another Glimpse of the Galaxy’s Newest Facecsudhbulletin March 22, 2020 0 COMMENTS
By Velia Salazar, staff reporter
Javier Hernandez, popularly known as Chicharito to many soccer fans, departed from European soccer to come suit up and play for the LA Galaxy, officially signing with the team on Jan. 21 earlier this year. His first home game was on March 7 at Dignity Health Sports Park, the Galaxy’s home stadium in Carson. He is one of the biggest soccer players in the Latinx community as he is the all-time leading goalscorer for the Mexican national team.
“When I first heard that he is going to play with LA Galaxy, I thought it was just a rumor,” Martin Lopez, kinesiology major, said. “LA Galaxy is a good soccer team, but Chicharito is one of the most popular players.”
If you aren’t aware of who he is, then it’s okay because not everyone enjoys the sport of soccer.
Chicharito means ‘little pea’ in Spanish, which he got because of his father. His father, Javier Hernandez Gutierrez, was nicknamed Chicharo because of his green eyes. That’s how the nickname “Chicharito” came to be. His father was also a soccer player for a few Mexican teams called Tecos (1981-1989; 1994-1995), Puebla (1989-1991), and Monarcas Morelia (1995-1999).
“I think [Chicharito] will be a great addition to the team,” Kristina Lopez, sociology major, said. “It’s like all the Latinx players are joining that team which is pretty cool to see. Latinx representation is just what we need in these dark times.”
You’re probably wondering ‘Why is it a big deal that he’s going to play for LA Galaxy?’
There are numerous answers, to be honest. One of the reasons why he is a big deal is because he is an amazing player. He is disciplined, has great movement off the ball and has the right attitude, all qualities that led to him being named the team captain in the team’s first game earlier this season against Houston Dynamo.
Another reason why it is a big deal that he is going to play with LA Galaxy is that he has a knack for scoring, just as the Mexican national team. He is the face of Mexican soccer, and with such a big following here in Los Angeles, many fans could flock to Carson to see the living legend in person. He has been playing soccer since 2006 and a lot of people have been following his every move. Now that he is going to play in Carson, more Mexico fans in Los Angeles will be able to watch him play.
“I am so excited to see him play,” Javier Cruz, business major, said. “I have always been a fan of his since he was playing with Chivas and I was sad to see him play in a foreign country…he did play with Mexico once in a while, it still wasn’t the same. I’m so glad he is playing near our school. I hope we get discounted tickets again or at least for his first few games.”
Chicharito started his career by playing for C.D. Guadalajara (better known as Chivas) in 2006. Four years later, he got signed to Manchester United in 2010 until 2016. Manchester United loaned him to Real Madrid during his time there from 2014-2016. Later on, he played for Bayer Leverkusen and then West Ham United. In 2019, he played for Sevilla before wearing the blue, white and gold of the LA Galaxy. During international breaks, he would also play for the Mexican national team when he was called up, mainly for big tournaments such as the CONCACAF Gold Cup or the FIFA World Cup.
“I’m actually pumped to see him play. He is one of the main reasons why I got into playing soccer,” Alex Gomez, a psychology major, said. “I don’t play for the school, but I do enjoy playing it on my free time. I’m excited to see what he has to offer to his new team.”
There is a lot of pressure for Chicharito to score a goal when he just started playing for the LA Galaxy. According to an MLS Soccer interview, some of the LA Galaxy players said not to pressure Chicharito to score a goal. LA Galaxy head coach Guillermo Barros Schelotto said that the goal will come on its own. This is a team effort, not just Chicharito that is playing.
Fans will have to wait until they can see the Mexican superstar in action for the Galaxy as the MLS season has been suspended until further notice amid the coronavirus pandemic that has swept the world and put all sports on pause.