Chivas USA have officially added two more players to the roster ahead of Saturday's regular season opener. As expected, defenders Walter Vilchez and Joaquin Velasquez will be Goats for the 2013 season. Velasquez is officially on loan from Chivas de Guadalajara, a team he has never played for, and so the move is likely finagling in order to maximize Chivas USA's roster possibilities. Vilchez, however, was signed outright to Chivas USA.
Vilchez, 31, is a Peruvian international, having played for his country as recently as last April, and has 64 caps. He has played for a large number of clubs, primarily in Peru, but he played in Mexico 2007-2009 with Cruz Azul and Puebla, playing under Chivas USA coach Jose Luis Sanchez Sola at the latter club. Vilchez most recently played for Sporting Cristal, who won the last Primera División Peruana title. Vlichez has played extensively for Chivas USA in the preseason matches, and he is a good bet to start Saturday against the Columbus Crew.
Velasquez, 37, has apparently not played since 2010, and I read that he had been working as an assistant coach under Chelís at Correcaminos. As a result, the prospect of integrating an aging player who appeared to essentially be retired into a brand new league seems somewhat risky, but I'm not the person who does the scouting. Velasquez is from Mexico, and has previously spent his entire career in Mexico, with Puebla, Santos Laguna, Lobos BUAP and Veracruz. He also played under Chelís at Puebla. Velasquez played a fair amount during the preseason matches for Chivas USA, but it is unclear if he will be a starter or will be part of rotation or depth. Considering Chelís' familiarity with him, a starting role would not be a surprise.
As a result of the moves, Chivas now have six defenders on the roster, so the defensive depth is starting to accumulate. Overall, the roster has 22 players at the moment, so expect the announcement of several more signings this week, almost certainly among the many trialists in camp this preseason.
And welcome Walter and Joaquin!
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