You’ve seen them all over the world in soccer for decades, rivalry games. Although the MLS has some rivalries that have a bit of history, it doesn’t quite match those from around the globe.
The LA Galaxy vs LAFC rivalry dubbed “El Trafico” or “LA Derby” is everything you wanted in a rivalry. Two teams separated by a few miles, arguing about which suburb is more representative of the city. A team with rich history against the new comers who smell blood in the water.
Now we can add fights, arrests, property damage. Although there are some who are pleading for everyone to be on their best behavior, this is what we really wanted. We all want to feel safe, but if you think you can have a true rivalry without some bad characters, you’re kidding yourself. We all saw the videos of LA Galaxy fans being harassed at Banc of California stadium. That prompted heightened security at StubHub Center this weekend. Sheriff’s on horseback, police in between supporters sections, and even the ghetto bird (police helicopter) all made their presence felt amongst stadium fans.
There will always be knuckleheads who take things too far but one thing is clear.
A line has been drawn in the sand. We don’t like them, and they don’t like us, and we couldn’t be happier!
Now onto the field. There is so much star power amongst the two teams on the field. A glance to your right and you see Zlatan, Alessandrini, the Dos Santos brothers, Cole, and Kamara. Turn to your left and you see Vela, Ciman, and Rossi. The LA Galaxy have the history and the trophies but LAFC have that new energy that I wish could be bottled and sold.
This year’s rivalry goes the way of the LA Galaxy who won one and tied two against their rivals. Zlatan’s debut in this derby may well go down as the best game in MLS history. The Galaxy fan base have plenty of reason to be happy about the way these three games turned out this year. Even chanting “You can’t beat us” after the game was over.
LAFC’s day will come, maybe sooner rather than later with the way the standings are shaping up. We all just want the opportunity to say we were there. And after three sell outs in these rivalry games, they may need to think about expanding the capacity because everyone in Los Angeles, soccer fan or not, wants in!
LONG LIVE EL TRAFICO!