The news last week that Chris Klein has gotten a contract extension as president of the LA Galaxy ended speculation he may not continue on after being suspended by MLS for overseeing a major roster rule infraction in 2019, but supporters are not happy.
The Galaxy released a terse statement to the LA Times’ Kevin Baxter that Klein will be back at the helm as president after his suspension ends in the spring, and Baxter’s report announcing the return cited strong business performance by the Galaxy with Klein shepherding those operations. But if AEG are happy with Klein’s overall performance and appear to be satisfied that Klein is not at fault for the lying over Cristian Pavon’s contract status to MLS when he first joined the club, the same can’t be said for the people who fueled much of the club’s business wins.
Five Galaxy supporters groups — Galaxians, LA Riot Squad, Angel City Brigade, Galaxy Outlawz and Ghosts Ultras Galaxy — released a joint statement on Friday where they vowed not to attend Galaxy games until there is a change.
Given recent news regarding Chris Klein’s contract extension, leadership of the Los Angeles Galaxy supporters groups have unanimously agreed not to attend any matches until change in the front office is made.
We encourage fans of the club at all levels, whether members of organized support or not, to join us in this action.
This boycott does not come from animosity to the players and coaching staff, rather a frustration with continued front office practices that have placed off-field business in higher importance than on-field product.
Our expectation is that executive leadership for our club will work with transparency, with honesty, and with professionalism. We demand that all involved have pride in our colors, as we do. We will no longer tolerate the types of dishonest and apathetic business practices which have embarrassingly come to characterize our front office and executive operations.
We will not return to the stands until change is made at the highest level. We promise to collectively ensure that our club returns to operating with integrity and openness as it has in the past. We will accept nothing less.
It’s worth noting that the Galaxy at the highest level have appeared to listen to supporter appeals in the recent past. In 2020, when Aleksandar Katai’s wife shared racist sentiments on her personal social media accounts during a summer when protests for racial equality were taking place around the country, fans demanded the departure of the player and his contract was mutually terminated.
Later that year, three supporters groups released an open letter asking for a change amid one of the worst losing streaks in club history. Two weeks later, as the skid extended, the Galaxy fired head coach Guillermo Barros Schelotto with several games left in the season.
But when it comes to the person at the top of the Galaxy organization, will it lead to what the fans are looking for? Thus far, there appears to be a profound disconnect between ownership at AEG and the fanbase, and it’s unclear if the club will heed the public pressure this time around or attempt to ignore it. Stay tuned.
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