New Soccer Rivalry in LA
The Los Angeles Galaxy has a new rival in town, and they are about to put on a show. On Sunday, March 31, the LA Galaxy will play the newest addition to the Major League Soccer, Los Angeles Futbol Club, better known as LAFC.
No one knew what to expect from LAFC, a new soccer club that does not have many big name players, but they have exceeded many expectations. LAFC is currently undefeated and are coming off of a bye week. LA Galaxy took their first loss this season, losing 2-1 against New York City Futbol Club (NYC FC) at Yankee Stadium in New York City, New York.
NYC had two early goals that LA Galaxy could not recover from, and eventually received a red card in the 85th minute. LAFC has a combined six goals with only one allowed in their first two games, and are looking to keep this trend going.
The LAFC vs. LA Galaxy game is completely sold out. The Galaxy’s two star players and brothers, Jonathan and Giovani Dos Santos, are expected to make a return this Sunday for the game. The two are both midfielders that use their chemistry during games on the field. Another key player people have their eye on is LAFC’s very own Carlos Vela. Vela finished LAFC’s last game against Real Salt Lake with a stunning goal. Although that was Vela's only goal this season, fans already recognize his presence on the field.
Soccer is one of the most underappreciated sports in America, as it is fairly new here. Creating more soccer teams in the US will hopefully make more Americans aware of the game and will hopefully also make the sport more appreciated here.
SMC’s very own women’s goal keeper, Emma Roberge, said, “I’d love to see more people in the US appreciating soccer and loving it like many other countries do. Having a father who is from Mexico, I was lucky to have been introduced to this sport and learning the beauty of it. I hope it becomes as big as a phenomenon as it is all around the world.”
It is hard to dream big as a soccer player in the US. The last five years had four teams join Major League Soccer (MLS), with there currently being 23 total teams. LAFC is one of these four teams.
When asked if she thought LAFC would change college soccer, Roberge said, “I think that honestly it's when you are in our teens/high school, that really determines if you will go pro, because you do have to be recruited by a good college at that time in order to even be seen by the professional leagues... I do believe that with this expansion, there are a lot more people playing soccer which actually makes it harder to go pro, but at the same time gives more people the opportunity to love the sport and play the sport.”
The two LA teams will go head to head next Sunday, March 31 at the Stubhub Center.