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Chicharito, LA Galaxy part ways after four seasons | MLSSoccer.com

Chicharito, LA Galaxy part ways after four seasons | MLSSoccer.com


Superstar striker Chicharito’s LA Galaxy career is over, as the club and player announced Friday they’ve parted ways.

Chicharito, Mexico’s all-time leading scorer, was out of contract and won’t return to LA for the 2024 MLS season. He last competed in June after suffering a torn right ACL and finished his four-year Galaxy stay with 38 goals and six assists in 74 games (65 starts).

With the 35-year-old’s exit, LA have opened a second Designated Player spot after they previously announced winger Douglas Costa won’t return for 2024. Star midfielder Riqui Puig is their lone remaining DP, setting up a pivotal offseason after LA finished 13th in the Western Conference table and missed the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs.

“We are grateful to Javier for his dedication and contributions to the LA Galaxy,” head coach and sporting director Greg Vanney said in a release. 

“In four seasons with the Galaxy, Javier was a passionate leader for our club on and off the field. We wish him all the best moving forward.”

Hernández joined LA to much fanfare in 2020 after playing for Sevilla (LaLiga), following stops at Manchester United (Premier League), Real Madrid (LaLiga) and more. The two-time MLS All-Star lived up to the billing when healthy, twice leading the Galaxy in goalscoring (2021, ‘22) and departing with the seventh-most goals in club history.

As Chicharito recovers from his knee injury, he’s now a free agent and can sign elsewhere in MLS or abroad.

“Life becomes exciting when you allow yourself to change and evolve to new challenges,” Hernández wrote on Instagram. “Thanks to everyone who was involved in my journey these four years.”

Chicharito, who sported the Galaxy’s captain armband, was the club’s emotional and on-field leader as their Vanney era unfolded. He was the Gs’ latest superstar striker, following in the footsteps of Robbie Keane and Zlatan Ibrahimović.

Internationally, Chicharito remains El Tri’s leading scorer with 52 goals in 109 appearances. He hasn’t earned a cap since 2019 and played at three World Cups.

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