With a return to MLS and perhaps regaining a spot in the US national team on his mind, Carlos Bocanegra was willing to listen to any MLS club interested in signing him. That meant even last-place Chivas USA, whose struggles and constant turnover have been well documented, didn't scare him away.
In fact, Bocanegra viewed the Rojiblancos' lull as an opportunity to leave an impact and perhaps make an impression on US manager Jurgen Klinsmann.
"They're struggling a bit with the results on the field, but they made it quite clear to me that they're looking to turn things around," Bocanegra told reporters Monday shortly after his signing was announced. "With me signing with them, they're hoping it's a first step in the right direction. Me coming home, which I'm very excited about, is an opportunity and a good challenge."
Bocanegra, 34, intends to become a leader for the Goats, who have not won an MLS match since March 30. He is scheduled to join Chivas USA on July 8 during their upcoming three-game road trip to Dallas, Montreal and Philadelphia. The summer transfer window opens July 9.
"I'm keeping myself fit," Bocanegra said. "I'd like to step in as soon as possible."
Bocanegra said he's completely healed from a hamstring injury that sidelined him a month at Spanish side Real Racing de Santander, where he was on loan from Scottish side Rangers FC since last August.
"I was ready to move anywhere in MLS," Bocanegra said. "Chivas came in and said it was important to sign with them. They're looking to turn things around, so hopefully this sends a good message. It had nothing to do with being in my hometown. It's awesome that it's an hour from my house, but that wasn't actually the thought at all. It just ended up working like this."