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California Clasico featured on MLS Insider

The California Clasico rivalry was featured on this week's episode of MLS Insider, showing from a San Jose perspective how much the rivalry can mean. Landon Donovan of the LA Galaxy has also a large part of the story, specifically his switching teams.

The California Clasico rivalry was featured on this week's episode of MLS Insider, showing from a San Jose perspective how much the rivalry can mean. The match footage is all from the last two matches at Stanford Stadium, which were both won by San Jose.

There are interviews with LA's Landon Donovan and Bruce Arena, and in fact part of the story focuses on the reaction to Donovan switching from San Jose to LA. Before the David Beckham conspiracy, there was a school of thought in LA that MLS engineered the return of Donovan to LA.

Donovan played four seasons with San Jose on loan from Bayern Leverkusen. When 2.5 months later, Donovan decided to return to MLS, San Jose no longer had his rights as it traded a portion of the allocation it received to compensate them from Donovan's departure to the MetroStars for Ricardo Clark. If this sounds like a crazy MLS rule quirk that fans will only be confused by, then you're right.

The Galaxy then traded Carlos Ruiz for Dallas' spot in the allocation ranking, against Ruiz' wishes. It's a series of transactions that still stings in San Jose.

On the LA side the rivalry could have lost some sting with the Quakes moving to Houston and becoming the Dynamo, but the recent Goonies version of San Jose have been a thorn in LA's side. Like Dodgers-Giants and Rams-49ers that preceded it, the California Clasico carries on the tradition of North-South rivalry in the great state of California.