Chivas USA officials (majority owner Antonio Cue, primarily) made up their minds a few weeks ago on a new head coach, we're told, and plan to announce their decision after Christmas.
Former Chicago Fire and New York Red Bulls head coach Juan Carlos Ososrio is the choice, several sources (including one inside the club) have told ESPN Los Angeles, but Chivas USA has been forced to wait until the close of the Colombian season before it could make an announcement.
Osorio, a Colombian-born coach who was educated in the U.S. (and received much of his coaching education while serving as conditioning coach at Manchester City in 2001-06), last weekend won the Colombian championship with Once Caldas.
The other finalists, the sources say, were Real Salt Lake assistant coach Robin Fraser, a former star defender for the Galaxy and other clubs, and Denis Hamlett, who succeeded Osorio as head coach of the Fire.
Cue, also Chivas' president, and interim general manager Jose L. Domene were in Mexico and unavailable for comment.
Others considered for the job were former U.S. national team striker Eric Wynalda, whose staff would have included Chivas legends Ramon Ramirez and Claudio Suarez, and former Chivas USA captain Jesse Marsch, an assistant coach for the U.S. national team. Wynalda withdrew his name from consideration three weeks ago.
Osorio, who attended Southern Connecticut State University and began his coaching career with long-defunct minor-league side Staten Island Vipers in 1998, was an assistant to MetroStars coach Octavio Zambrano in 2000-01. After his time at Man City, he took charge of Colombia's Millonarios, his first head-coaching job.
He resurrected a struggling Chicago side in 2007, guiding it to a 6-3-6 record the second half of the season and into the Eastern Conference final before bolting to the Red Bulls (the rebranded MetroStars). He took New York to the 2008 MLS Cup title game, but resigned about two-thirds into a horrid 2009 campaign, stepping down with the Red Bulls 2-16-4 and without a win in more than three months.