Fútbol Confidential:The Soccer Store

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Stories of soccer in the international city: Los Angeles

Soccer has always been in Los Angeles, kept alive by immigrant communities across the city, playing their version of the world’s game.

British footballers finding each other in Hollywood; bantering and battling their way through the LA Municipal League, the passion for fútbol that runs through generations of Mexican and central American families, and how AYSO youth soccer turned South Bay, Los Angeles into Soccer City, and a soccer store that’s like a social barber shop for the city.
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A story about soccer in Los Angeles seen from the perspective of the biggest family-run chain of soccer stores in the city, Niky's Sports. They began as an all-purpose sporting goods store in 1986 but eventually became soccer-only – a store that catered to foreign born and immigrant players in LA. It started with Nicholas Orellana, the patriarch of the business and the original "Niki.” His son Luis runs the operation now, with parts of the business run by other members of the extended family. When Luis was a teenager, he and his father once were asked to supply soccer cleats to the entire Colombian national team after the team's shoes were confiscated by the DEA. 

Agility machine. Photo by Bob Carlson.

The extended family that runs the Niky’s Sports chain. Photo by Luis Orellana.

Nicholas Orellana and his brother in front of the original Niky's Sports. Photo by Luis Orellana.

Check out the other episodes in the series here:
Fútbol Confidential: Hollywood United
Fútbol Confidential: Fútbol
Fútbol Confidential: Soccer City



Bob Carlson


Bob Carlson