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'Chucky' Lozano to San Diego FC: New MLS franchise means business by landing Mexico star for inaugural season

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After only being announced as an expansion club to become the 30th team in Major League Soccer in May of 2023, San Diego FC have had to ramp up their team building quickly ahead of hitting the pitch essentially a year and a half later in 2025. While this means that they're moving on an accelerated timeline to get things done, that isn't something that is slowing San Diego down as they've just announced a marquee signing in Mexican international and Scudetto winner Hirving "Chucky" Lozano. Lozano will become the first designated player in club History with a contract until the end of the 2028 MLS season. As the club won't join MLS until 2025, Lozano will remain at PSV through 2024 before coming to San Diego.

Joining from PSV after winning the Eredivisie with them and scoring six goals in league play, Lozano will move stateside during a big period of soccer in North America. While Lozano won't be involved in Copa America play for Mexico this summer, this is the type of signing that makes sense with the World Cup coming to the United States, Canada, and Mexico in 2026, as he looks to potentially get back into the fold. 

San Diego are well poised to take advantage of more signings like this but not just because of the World Cup. With executives like Tom Penn, who has been through building an expansion team before with Los Angeles FC, and academy connections, San Diego are looking to make a name in their first season using global connections as a base to get off the ground.

"Signing a player of the international stature of 'Chucky' Lozano is the biggest possible endorsement of our project in San Diego," said San Diego FC owner and chairman, Sir Mohamed Mansour. 

As San Diego builds their roster, it's hard not to compare this signing to another one that Penn was involved with when Carlos Vela joined LAFC. Leaving Real Sociedad at the time, Vela took MLS by storm winning an MVP and breaking the league record for goals in a season with 34 while also lifting MLS Cup with the Black and Gold. If Lozano can have even half the impact that Vela did, they could take the league by storm in their inaugural season.  

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