Los Angeles Soccer: Jose L. Domene

Chivas' choice: Juan Carlos Osorio

December, 22, 2010
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.

CHIVAS USA: A 'new beginning' with an old president

December, 15, 2010
So much is changing in the wake of Chivas USA's worst season since its horrid start in 2005 that's it simple to think the club is making a new start.

Antonio Cue, the Goats' managing partner, doesn't disagree.

"I do think things are happening and changing," Cue (pronounced "quay") said Wednesday. "We're very excited about it. It's a great opportunity to do a lot of things we want to do. It is kind of a new beginning, for sure."

And so Cue is reaching back to the club's beginnings. He has resumed his former position as club president, a job he held until Shawn Hunter was brought aboard in September 2007, and says he he has no plans to relinquish the title.

So: One vacancy filled and two to go.

The club ostensibly had been looking for a new president since Hunter stepped down last month, and there remains openings for a head coach and, following vice president of soccer operations Stephen Hamilton's resignation Tuesday, for a general manager on the technical side.

Hamilton, who will continue to work with the club for "the next couple months" as an adviser, said Wednesday that he had "a couple of things I'm looking at" within the soccer world and that this "seemed like the right time for me" to step down.

"For me, personally," he said, "it felt like the right time to go in a different direction."

(Read full post)

Chivas' soccer-ops VP steps down

December, 14, 2010

Stephen Hamilton, Chivas USA's highest-ranking executive on the soccer side of the organization, abruptly resigned Thursday, seemingly leaving the Major League Soccer club in turmoil.

Hamilton, whose title was vice president for soccer operations, is the third major Chivas figure to step down or be fired since the club finished in October its worst season since its inaugural season. The club also is searching for a new head coach and president.

Hamilton, who attended the NCAA College Cup with Chivas USA coaches last weekend at UC Santa Barbara, was the club's chief figure in assessing and acquiring players and was working with ownership to find a replacement for Martin Vasquez, who was dismissed Oct. 27 as coach after refusing to allow one of his assistants to be reassigned within the organization. A source close to the club says there are three finalists for the post, and Hamilton had said the Goats hoped to make a decision by Christmas.

Club president Shawn Hunter resigned Nov. 2 so he could spend more time with his family, which lives in Denver.

Hamilton, who was not available for comment, will continue working with Chivas USA in an advisory role. Club adviser Jose L. Domene becomes interim general manager and will work with the committee looking to hire a head coach and prepare for next season.

Hamilton's brother, Doug, was the Galaxy's general manager in 2002-06. He died in March 2006 from a heart attack on a flight home from Costa Rica after L.A. was eliminated by Saprissa in the CONCACAF Champions Cup.