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Roger Goodell explains why he’s not worried yet about Chargers’ reported struggles in Los Angeles

The Chargers‘ decision to move to Los Angeles hasn’t turned into a total disaster yet, but it seems to be inching that way. 

Things are so bad right now that the team recently had to cut its revenue projections for personal seat licenses (PSL) by $250 million. With the sale of PSLs, the Chargers were hoping to pull in roughly $400 million, but that projection is now down to just $150 million. That’s a monstrous drop for a team that’s also in the middle of forking over a $645 million relocation fee.  

The Chargers aren’t just struggling in the PSL department though, they’re also struggling to draw fans to StubHub Center. Well, fans are showing up, they’re just not cheering for the Chargers. Here’s an image from their home opener against the Chiefs in September. 

It almost look like Chiefs fans bought every ticket in the stadium. 

Despite the team’s struggles to draw fans and sell PSLs, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell doesn’t sound too concerned with the situation just yet. During a press conference at the NFL owners meeting on Wednesday, Goodell said there’s still plenty of time for the Chargers to make fans because they won’t be moving in to their new stadium until 2020. 

“That excitement is going to build as we get closer, as we are still two years away,” Goodell said. “There is lots of football and lots of building still to do. We were out of the market for a long time. We have to earn our way back with our fans.”

Goodell sounded optimistic that both the Chargers and Rams would be able to make new fans before the new stadium opens. 

“We have to build that relationship back with our fans and make sure that we do it right,” Goodell said. “Both teams are committed to that and it will be something that we will have to work at over time. They both have very exciting teams and that will be helpful also. All of those things will come together over the next two years.”

Not surprisingly, Goodell has a positive take of the situation. However, that doesn’t necessarily jive with the picture that’s been painted over the past 18 months. Less than a week after the Chargers made the decision to move to L.A. back in January 2017,  a report from ESPN.com came out that said many owners were upset with the team for moving

As CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora explained at the time, several owners had “grave concerns” about putting a second team in L.A. just one season after the Rams made the same move. Basically, after going 21 years without a team, the league didn’t want to rush into L.A. The owners and the league also didn’t want to put a second team in the market with the Rams still trying to win fans. 

Another report from September 2017 indicated that the NFL didn’t think letting the Chargers move to L.A. was a “smart move.” The NFL’s owners have had some serious concerns about the Chargers move since the very beginning, and it seems those concerns were justified. Despite Goodell’s optimism, it’s hard to imagine the Chargers filling a 70,000-seat stadium in 2020 if they can’t even fill a 26,000-seat soccer stadium with their own fans right now. 

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