Weekend Plans With MLS Galaxy President Chris Klein: Sleeping At The Zoo, Playoffs
The weekend began a little early for MLS Galaxy President CHRIS KLEIN, as he got to spend Thursday night trick-or-treating with his wife ANGELA and their three kids through the neighborhood of their Orange County, Calif., home. Klein’s 11-year-old son, CARSON, waited until the last minute and dressed up -- naturally -- as a soccer player, while his two daughters, CAMI (8) and BRIE (2), donned costumes of “sock hop” girls. But after a night of fun Halloween festivities, it was right back to the office Friday morning to prepare for the Galaxy’s MLS Playoff opener against Real Salt Lake on Sunday night.
WORKING FOR THE WEEKEND: Friday will be back to work. We have our first playoff game on Sunday, so we will be back in the office on Friday. I have breakfast with LUC ROBITAILLE, the President of the L.A. Kings, and then the rest of the day is really preparation for the game. It’s our first home playoff game, so we’ll have walk-throughs in terms of game presentation, monitor how sales are going, make sure things on the team side are all set and also preparing for our road trip next week for the second leg of our playoffs with Real Salt Lake in Utah.
JUST THE TWO OF US: My wife and I have a dinner date (Friday) night. So I’ll leave the office around 5:00pm, but it’s usually 6:00pm. We’re fairly easy to please, so if we can get out of the house and get a babysitter we usually decide (where to eat) once we get in the car. We’re both from the Midwest, and living near the water is new to us, so we like to go somewhere in Corona del Mar or Laguna Beach. We usually try to get out at least once a week with just the two of us. It’s not always Friday night. We usually just pick whatever night works and try to make it happen.
ONE-ON-ONE TIME: Carson plays for the U-12 Galaxy Academy team. He has a game at 9:00am on Saturday, so I’ll get up and take him to that, which I enjoy doing, just getting out relaxing and watching him play. Saturday evening I have an event with my daughter Cami. We're part of a group called Indian Princesses -- it’s dads and daughters. So we actually have a sleepaway night where there’s a group of about 20 dads that take their daughters and we’re doing -- it’s called “Roar and Snore” -- so we’re going to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. You get in and you camp with the girls and roast marshmallows and the whole thing and tour the wild animal park. This is our second year doing it. It’s fun. It’s a good way to spend some time -- when you have three kids -- to spend time with one of your daughters, especially as important as it is for dads to spend time with their girls. It’s something that we enjoy doing together. I have soccer in common with my son and so this is something that Cami and I have enjoyed. Brie is still too young for it.
PITCH PERFECT: I usually get to the games about four or five hours before kickoff. Our game is at 6:00pm Sunday night, so I’ll probably leave my house to come up here right around lunchtime. Once I get to the stadium I walk around, make sure everything is set for the game, get a list of all of our partners and people that I will go and say hello to before, during and after the game. I’ll spend some time speaking with our coaches, just visiting with them before the players start to arrive. Then about an hour-and-a-half before the game, our fans start to roll in, so I’ll usually walk out and see our supporters groups, which are our most passionate fans. We have two different groups that tailgate outside the stadium, so I’ll go and see them before the game. I like to be in my seat to watch the game at kickoff, and then we’ll have some people to go see at halftime, and then certainly after the game as well.
THEN AND NOW: I get asked a lot, especially this time of year, if I miss playing, and the answer is absolutely not. First, I love and am thankful for what I’m doing right now. But the second part of it is I have a very good understanding that I couldn’t do it anymore. I enjoy watching our team. I’m proud of the group that (coach) BRUCE ARENA has put together. We won two championships in a row. I do get a little bit nervous, but I understand once the game kicks off I have no effect on the outcome of the game, so I enjoy watching our team play and cheering them on. I’m not a superstitious guy so I don’t have a lucky tie or a routine or anything that I think has any influence on the outcome of the game.
CLOSING TIME: Usually after the game we have some things that are going on, where we have partners and our season-ticket members that will go in our Champions Lounge and have a drink and mingle. So I’ll go in there for a little bit, talk to Bruce after the game, and then it’s usually time to head on home. Then right back to the office on Monday.
POUNDING THE PAVEMENT: At this time of the year we don’t have much time to rest. Our schedule is a bit cluttered, so I try to find balance wherever I can. Since I stopped playing I’ve picked up running. I’ve done a marathon and a couple of trail races. Right now I'm training for the L.A. Marathon. It is important to me to be able to get out and go for a long run and get away from it. I’d much rather do that than play soccer at this point in my life. The marathon is March 9th, the day after our home opener in '14.