MLS is Back

LAFC 2024 Season Preview


Armchair Analyst's Breakdown

  • Strength: Dénis Bouanga had one of the best seasons (all competitions) in MLS history last year. Eduard Atuesta is back, and more reinforcements have arrived via Mexico, Colombia and parts beyond. And a chunk of the group that’s made two straight MLS Cup appearances (winning one!) is still around.
  • Weakness: A larger chunk has departed. LAFC, as of now, are bringing back just 49.9% of last year’s minutes, which is by far the lowest number in the league. And few of the new signings from last year’s two windows really hit, so there’s a significant amount of uncertainty.

Key Departures

  • Kellyn Acosta: After two years at LAFC, Acosta joined Chicago Fire FC in free agency. The US international midfielder memorably scored in MLS Cup 2022.
  • Giorgio Chiellini: Chiellini retired after MLS Cup 2023, then joined LAFC as a player development coach – keeping the esteemed Italian center back's knowledge in the club.
  • Maxime Crépeau: With Hugo Lloris inbound, Crépeau jetted for the Portland Timbers in free agency. Sticking with goalkeepers, John McCarthy is now at LA Galaxy.
  • Diego Palacios: Palacios left in free agency for Brazilian top-flight side Corinthians. The Ecuador international was the Black & Gold's starting left back for the past four seasons.
  • Note: As of publication, Carlos Vela remains an out-of-contract free agent. Will the club captain and inaugural signing re-up, whether it's a DP deal or not?

Key Signings

  • Eduard Atuesta: One of LAFC's foundational players is back, as Atuesta signed on a season-long loan from Brazilian top-flight side Palmeiras. The Colombian international and former MLS Best XI midfielder should slot right into midfield.
  • Omar Campos: Campos arrives from Liga MX side Santos Laguna as LAFC's new starting left back, filling Palacios' shoes. He occupies a U22 Initiative roster slot and is a rising Mexican international.
  • Hugo Lloris: In a changing of the guard at goalkeeper, LAFC have added an iconic player. Lloris is coming off an esteemed career at Premier League side Tottenham Hotspur and helped lead France to the 2018 World Cup title.
  • David Martínez: A wunderkind, Martínez joins Tomás Ángel as new pieces in attack. The 18-year-old Venezuelan international winger might not start right away, but his potential is lofty.
  • Full roster

Projected Starting XI



  • Marcelo Balboa: 2nd in Western Conference
  • Kyndra de St. Aubin: 4th in Western Conference
  • Matt Doyle: 3rd in Western Conference
  • Brian Dunseth: 2nd in Western Conference
  • Miguel Gallardo: 3rd in Western Conference
  • Antonella Gonzalez: 2nd in Western Conference
  • J. Sam Jones: 2nd in Western Conference
  • Sacha Kljestan: 2nd in Western Conference
  • Kaylyn Kyle: 5th in Western Conference
  • Lori Lindsey: 2nd in Western Conference
  • Frédéric Lord: 1st in Western Conference
  • Joseph Lowery: 2nd in Western Conference
  • Sammy Sadovnik: 2nd in Western Conference
  • Andrew Wiebe: 3rd in Western Conference
  • Bradley Wright-Phillips: 1st in Western Conference
  • Diego Valeri: 1st in Western Conference
  • Jake Zivin: 2nd in Western Conference

Odds & Ends

  • Head coach: Steve Cherundolo
  • Stadium: BMO Stadium
  • Last year: 14W-10L-10T, 52 points, 3rd in Western Conference
  • Audi 2023 MLS Cup Playoffs: MLS Cup finalist