Chivas CEO admits failed approach for Carlos Vela

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Liga MX champions Chivas were beaten to Carlos Vela's services by incoming MLS club Los Angeles FC, club CEO Jose Luis Higuera has revealed. The Real Sociedad forward will link-up with the California-based club in the New Year ahead of the 2018 campaign.

Speaking to ESPN, Higuera admitted that his side had been 'very close' to sealing the signature of Vela, but they were outbid by Los Angeles FC, who lured the attacker with their financial power, he said: "We made contact with Vela and we were very close, but if they beat you to it, they beat you to it. We can't compare ourselves or be irresponsible with the people, we don't have the economic power of MLS. The day that MLS decides to go for Europeans and to have a Champions [League], they have the power and money to do it and players dance for money. Players don't play and then see if they get paid, and even less so these days."

The former Arsenal man indicated in June that he could pursue a potential return to the Guadalajara club before opting to commit his future to Los Angeles FC two months later. Reigning champions Chivas has received a lot of criticism from the club's faithful of late after they followed their Clausura triumph in 2017 with a disastrous Apertura where are currently in 15th place and out of playoff contention.

Higuera also revealed that Vela was not the only Europe-based Mexico international they talked to during the summer transfer window. The club also held negotiations with Javier Hernandez over a potential return home, but the striker snubbed their advances to prolong his European spell with West Ham United, who he joined from Bayer Leverkusen. Hernandez has since struggled for consistency in the Hammers frontline, although he has found the score sheet four times in 11 Premier League appearances.