When you think about some of the best goalscorers to play at this level in Major League Soccer, it’s almost impossible not to put Carlos Vela somewhere towards the top of the list. The guy is just on fire right now, and with 23 goals in the league to this name already, it feels like he’s just getting started.
As reported by Deadspin and ESPN, his success isn’t just limited to the US – as he has now become the all-time leading Mexican goalscorer in MLS history. While some sites have taken it upon themselves to take a more comical approach towards analysing this situation, we tend to think that this is actually a pretty big deal.
Don’t hate the player, hate the game
The 30 year old, who spent seven years with Arsenal from 2005 all the way up to 2012, has finally found a club that he can really sink his teeth into. After a series of loan deals and moves here, there and everywhere, Los Angeles seems to be the city for him.
Real Sociedad was a great stopping ground for the veteran, but at this point, you simply cannot deny his success in front of goal – and neither can the man himself.
“They criticized me a lot for coming here [to MLS],” Vela said in Spanish after the win over the Red Bulls. “Obviously, I accept the criticism, but [the critics] don’t stop me wanting to be the best in the league, to want to do better each day, to put my name and Mexico’s name everywhere and I’m doing that right now.
“Hopefully, I can keep scoring more goals, make more assists, break more records and help my team, which is the most important thing,” he added.
“The race with Josef is nice,” said Vela. “It’s more special against him because we have a good relationship. Him breaking records tells me that if I want to be at his level I have to do big things and we’re competing. May the best win and I’ll keep working hard so it can be me.”
The race he is referring to is the race for the Golden Boot, which he is currently in the midst of with Atlanta United star Josef Martinez. The two men have been battling back and forth all season long, but for the most part, Vela has been in control as LAFC continues to surge towards the playoffs with all the momentum in the world.
Carlos breaking records like this is perhaps even more satisfying when you think about some of the unnecessary comments made by the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic earlier on in the season. Instead of rising to that kind of bait, he simply got his head down and focused on the task at hand: scoring a whole bunch of goals for his team.
Regardless of whether or not LAFC is able to claim the crown this season, Vela looks set to be a featured member of their squad for many years to come.