Lost amid an outstanding defensive effort from Chivas USA and a controversial red card in Sunday’s LA derby at the (soon-to-be-renamed) Home Depot Center was the best backstory on a goal this year.
Chivas USA’s late game-winner – given the Goats’ man-down status, plus the fact that they were underdogs to begin with, that strike was every bit as likely as finding a $1.50 beer at the Home Depot Center – was supplied by rookie Carlos Alvarez.
Only, he was no ordinary rookie. That talented young man, last year’s Big East Player of the Year, has Chivas USA in his heart.
When so many players around MLS would dash across the street at the very mention of joining Chivas USA – the project under new manager José Luis Sánchez Solá isn’t looking too shabby all of the sudden, but the uncertainty was cranked up to 11 in the off-season – Alvarez proclaimed his ardent desire to be wear the familiar red stripes before Major League Soccer’s January draft.
Chivas USA held the No. 2 overall draft selection and the East L.A. born and raised Alvarez made no secret of his craving to be their man.
So to get his first professional goal, and such a dramatic one, in the teams’ 1-1 draw yesterday, that really is story-book stuff.
And the moment was hardlylost on the highly quotable Sanchez Sola:
Alvarez was a great college soccer player but the MLS’ level is different and he’s adjusting to it. He keeps on making the effort day in and day out, but please, let’s talk about Alvarez, the human being, the young guy with big charisma, the guy who today, making his debut in the league, scored his first goal and nonetheless against the Galaxy. Alvarez, the individual who grew up loving this institution, in this city, and as I said, he scored in front of his family, friends, and followers. We, as an institution, should feel fortunate to have him.”