We now know the name of the next Chivas USA coach to be fired. That’s because Wednesday the Major League Soccer team announced the name of the most recent one to be hired: Jose Luis Sanchez Sola, who formerly ran the youth program and the first-division Mexican League team in Puebla.
“Very honored, very grateful and committed to fulfill the goals of the institution,” Sanchez Sola said of his latest opportunity. “I know that with the support of the staff currently in place, my transition to MLS will be that much easier. We are going to take on this new challenge with lots of energy and aspirations.”
Yet despite that enthusiasm, Sanchez Sola should probably rent, not buy, in Southern California. Though Sanchez Sola was sacked twice as coach during his four years with Puebla’s top club, that would qualify as lifetime tenure under Chivas USA’s new ownership.
Mexican businessman Jorge Vergara and his wife, Angelica Fuentes, have fired their head coach 15 times in their 12 years in charge of Chivas de Guadalajara, their Mexican League team. And two weeks ago the pair fired Johan Cruyff, the former Barcelona coach and Holland playmaker they had hired in the spring to remake the franchise.
Speaking of remaking a team, Sanchez Sola faces a difficult challenge with Chivas USA. The team missed the MLS playoffs each of the last three seasons, winning just 23 games over that span. And with Vergara promising to implement a Mexican-first strategy with his MLS team, Sanchez Sola will likely have to start from scratch since many of the players former Coach Robin Fraser had at the end of last season are unlikely to be back.
That may qualify as good news, though, since Fraser’s team was winless in its final 14 games.
Sanchez Sola, Chivas USA’s eighth coach in as many seasons, may not have been Vergara’s first choice as coach. Seven weeks ago reports out of Mexico said ownership had decided to offer the job to former national team coach Efrain Flores.