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The best of Angels on Parade in 2018

Before we embark on the new year, let’s take a brief look back.

The Numerals For New York City’s Annual New Year’s Eve Celebration Arrive In Times Square Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images

2018 was a busy year for Angels on Parade. After years of anticipation, Los Angeles Football Club finally debuted with a living, breathing MLS team. They were pretty damn good, too, making the playoffs in their first year, going to the semifinals of the U.S. Open Cup, scoring lots of goals.

The other team we cover, Orange County SC, had their best season in their history in 2018. The team won a lot of games, scored a lot of goals, and were fun to watch. It was a good year for the teams we cover, and if you’re familiar with our site’s history, that’s not something we counted on in the past.

The team over here at Angels on Parade ramped up our output, publishing a third more stories in 2018 compared to the year before. Our readership expanded substantially. Thanks for reading, and please tell your friends and family about our site.

There was a lot to choose from, but here is a selection of our best stories from 2018:

Gensler architect on LAFC stadium: “Everything’s been running very smoothly”: LAFC’s stadium turned out to be a miracle of sorts, the rare mass scale project that saw no hiccups, no major delays after it rained for a few days, and for that we have to all be very grateful. We spoke to the project manager with the project on track and in the end, it was, with the stadium opening without a hitch in late-April (more on that below).

Our time is now: We waited three and a half years for LAFC. Just before the first game, here was the rallying cry for the season ahead.

LAFC win first-ever MLS game, 1-0 over Seattle Sounders: It’s a recap, but if ever there was one to savor, this would be it.

Interview with Orange County SC head coach Braeden Cloutier: We spoke exclusively to the head coach around the opening of the season, and his ideas were pretty well carried out over the course of the year.

LAFC-Atlanta United: Perspectives from the press box: M.A. Clark was on location in Atlanta for LAFC’s blowout loss, but he gave us all a peek behind the curtain of a working journalist, even for a day, at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

The part at the LAFC game that made me cry: I’m not afraid to admit the entire stadium doing the “L-A! F-C!” chant while waving black and gold foil made me cry, after waiting so long to see it. Laurent Ciman’s goal to win that first home game was just the perfect moment to capture that night.

A guide on taking the Metro and rideshare to LAFC games: Not sure how to get to LAFC games? We provided a firsthand guide of two different ways to get to and from The Banc.

Angels on Tour: My experience at the LAFC-Earthquakes game: Ryan Goodwin was one of the lucky spectators at Avaya Stadium for LAFC’s dramatic 4-3 win over the San Jose Earthquakes. He shares his experience on tour and offers some tips for future fans in SJ.

LAFC doubling down on attacking approach: Sometimes revolutionary, sometimes maddening, LAFC’s style by August was set — score more than the other side. If it’s 1-0, so be it, but if it’s 6-5, sure, that’s cool too.

Why Laurent Ciman’s departure does - and does not - make sense: Ciman turned out to be many things, including quite the enigma, but we go over the reasons why his departure wasn’t a major surprise in the end.

Mr. “Ultracompetitive”: How Aodhan Quinn has succeeded at Orange County SC: We scored an exclusive interview with the eventual USL MVP finalist and All-League first team selection.

Four updates LAFC need to make in 2019: Given the attacking approach noted above, these changes may not end up happening, but Patrick Stoll lays out four ways in which LAFC should look to upgrade in order to compete next year.

What was your favorite story? Let us know in the comments below. And Happy New Year!