The Los Angeles Galaxy are no strangers to going big. From signing the originator of the Designated Player rule, David Beckham, to bringing Zlatan Ibrahimovic to the United States, the Galaxy have a track record of attracting the biggest names possible. Once again, it appears they will generate a massive buzz by bringing Mexican international Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez in as their next marquee signing.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the G's could announce the acquisition of El Tri's all-time leading scorer as early as Wednesday. The 31-year-old will join from Sevilla after the two clubs agreed on a transfer fee of approximately $8.7 million. Early reports indicate that Hernandez would pull in a modest annual salary of around $5 million.
That figure would have ranked only sixth in MLS among the league's highest paid players last season, and is a full $1 million less than his countryman, LAFC's Carlos Vela, earns. While Chicharito's prime may be nearing its end, he's still capable of scoring goals at any level. His impact on the field in MLS should be quite noticeable, but it may pale in comparison to the influence he could have in other areas.
Big-name signings in MLS, especially in top media markets like LA and New York, are expected to bring more than just statistical production. They are brought in to attract attention to their respective markets and the league as a whole. Acquiring one of—if not the most—famous active Mexican soccer player in the world is an opportunity too good to pass up. From increased media and fan interest to merchandise sales to marketing opportunities, Chicharito's Los Angeles landing could rival David Beckham's in terms of long-term impact on MLS.
Marketability aside, Chicharito is a proven scorer that can replace the production of Ibrahimovic. With other additions to the squad already brought in, such as Aleksandar Katai and Emiliano Insua, this signing gets the Galaxy that much closer to competing for trophies.