CHESTER, PA- JUNE 25: Cortez: Released by Chivas USA (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)
Another day, another roster move. After hearing earlier in the week that Chivas USA forward Chris Cortez was out of contract, news has come out today, from both ESPN's Scott French and MLSSoccer.com's Adam Serrano, that Cortez has been released. French talked to Chivas coach Robin Fraser about Cortez, and while he was professional in his comments about the young striker, I don't disagree with the move. He is 23 years old, so he has time to develop, but in his first team appearances last season, he didn't seem able to adjust to the speed of the game.
All in all, Cortez signed with the club and made his debut on May 15, 2011, against the New York Red Bulls in Chivas' 3-2 victory. He played a total of 207 minutes in nine matches, and didn't score in 2011. I think the best step for him would be to try and get on an NASL or USL-PRO team and develop in the lower division first, before giving MLS another shot. He seems willing to work hard, which should work in his favor, and we wish him the best.The forward pool for Chivas is now Alejandro Moreno, Casey Townsend, Cesar Romero, Juan Pablo Angel (if he indeed re-signs), and perhaps Miller Bolanos, who has been touted as a versatile player who can play in midfield, as a withdrawn striker, or on the front line. It's not a particularly deep pool, and Townsend and Romero will probably be expected to make an immediate impact in their first season with Chivas, but the depth of midfielders on the squad may help mitigate the lack of depth up top.
French also noted in his article that two trialists, defender Mario Ledezma and midfielder Pablo Sandoval, are still on trial although they aren't traveling with the team to Portland for the upcoming tournament. The team also has another trialist, defender Scott Gordon, who most recently played with the Fort Lauderdale Strikers in the NASL. Gordon and fellow-trialist Matt Dallman indicate the fact that Chivas are looking to add to their defensive depth heading into the season.
What do you think? Leave a comment below!