THE ANGELS — Javier Hernandez He has managed to turn back two difficult years in terms of performance with an excellent scorer start in his second season in MLS. The individual effort that he has made in 2021 is already paying off for his club, LA Galaxy.
After ten weeks of activity in this Major League Soccer campaign, Chicharito has scored ten goals in the same number of games, which places him as the leader in individual scoring in MLS. For the third time so far this tournament, Chicharito has been chosen as the player of the week in the North American league.
In 2019, his last year in European soccer, Hernández wore the shirts of West Ham and Sevilla. Between his participation with both clubs in that calendar year, Chicharito played a total of 1,608 minutes in 30 games and only scored seven goals.
By 2020, Javier left the Old Continent and emigrated to the United States by signing for LA Galaxy. His debut season was far from expected. Among the complicated global pandemic that disrupted activity, injuries and personal issues, Chicharito had its worst year. He saw activity in 12 games for a total of 757 and only two goals in the whole year.
But what has caused the change in the Mexican forward? Below, we review reasons why Chicha has rebounded in performance.
There is no doubt that teamwork makes a difference. And no, we are not only referring to the team of players on the court, but, in this case, a team working outside of it. Hernández took on the task of surrounding himself with a group of collaborators, approximately 10 people, who work alongside him to optimize his performance. As Javier himself shared it with the media, he has a work team that ranges from a nutritionist, personal trainer, physical trainer, individual tactical analyst after each game, stylist, emotional improvement guide, digital content creator, among others. .
Little is said in sport about how important it is to have a balance and also work on the emotional and mental side. Like every human being, the athlete goes through different moments in his life, which have an impact on performance. Chicharito has made an effort to share the experiences he has gone through, in order to normalize vulnerability in the field of sport. In 2020, Javier lived the duel of closing the cycle of his ten years in European football that represented the dream and work of a lifetime; changed club, country, soccer league, added to the pandemic, the birth of his daughter, injuries, the death of his grandfather, Tomás Balcázar, criticism in the media regarding his game, as well as speculation about his private life and his romantic relationship. Part of the change in habits that Hernández made this year have also had to do with the emotional part.
Greg Vanney assumed the reins of the LA Galaxy for the 2021 season. The arrival of the American coach to the club represented a turn for the institution in all aspects. In addition to football, Vanney sought to return the identity and work methodology that has characterized the most winning club in MLS history. The players have responded to the idea of the game from day one, executing the teachings on the court. So far, it has been reflected in the results that have them at the top of the general table in third place in the Western Conference. Chicharito has not been the exception. As one of the highest paid leaders, figure and footballer on the squad, Chicharito was one of the first people Vanney spoke to upon arrival to express his idea for the club. Hernández has responded to the confidence of the coach, who seeks to exploit his strengths on the court. The style of play favors the Mexican forward, as they constantly seek to get balls to the area.
With LA Galaxy, Chicharito has a leading role. Having more minutes of play and a regularity on the court was one of the reasons why Hernández chose to join the ranks of the Galaxy. At 33 years of age, Chicharito is the figure, one of the leaders of the dressing room and second captain of Los Angeles, being his compatriot Jonathan dos Santos the first. From his time as a Manchester United player, Chicharito made a name for himself as a luxury replacement in elite clubs. Afterwards, he constantly lacked the opportunities he wanted, particularly in 2019. Now, in this tournament, he has started all ten games that have been played, for a total of 866 minutes and ten goals.
“All I do is know what I’m capable of. I love playing soccer and I have an internal motivation and certainty, regardless of what people say. All I do is give myself with a lot of passion and commitment and not keep anything to myself. Because as life is, we do not know how long we will be here. You do it to try to be a better version and achieve all the dreams that we have in mind, ”shared Chicharito, who as the only pending issue has a possible return to the Mexican National Team, although there seems to be a lot of confusion behind it.