Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Ergo, David Beckham To LA

Beckham to LA That's right. Between the Los Angeles yet to set their 2007 season ticket prices and that Frank Yallop would never mislead his friend Craig Forrest, Beckham is coming to LA. At least that those seem to be the main reasons for Andrea Canales to conclude, "http://soccernet.espn.go.com/columns/story?id=397097&root=mls&cc=5901". That's right, David Beckham will be leaving Real Madrid this January for Los Angeles. I don't dispute that Yallop and Forrest are friends. And I don't dispute it's unusual for LA to not have set their 2007 season ticket prices yet. After all, the 2007 player combine is a few days away. And before we know it MLS teams will be holding pre-season training. Nevertheless there are too many unanswered questions. MLS' Thin Wallet How would the MLS be able to pay Beckham? In June 2003 Beckham signed a £24.5 million 4-year deal with Real Madrid. Yes, that's coming to end. But £6 million a year is a lot of money. A pound is fetching $1.96 right now. Even assuming Mr. Posh is going to be taking a pay cut as he comes to the end of his career, how big of cut is that? A 3 year deal worth $12 million? A 2 year deal worth $7.5 million? Keep in mind the average player salary is about $75,000 per year. Keep in mind the MLS's salary cap is $1.9 million. Keep in mind the MLS lost $250 million in it's first 5 years. Keep in mind the total league revenues for the 12 teams in the MLS in 2005 was thought to be less than $150 million. Even with Phil Anschutz's fat wallet, it's hard to imagine them spending a few MLS team rosters worth of salary on just one player. It's hard to picture such a large share of the Galaxy's annual revenue into a contract for just one player. London Calling David Beckham was Leytonstone, London, England. His parents were huge Tottenham Hotspur fans. He even attended the Spurs school of excellence before joining Manchester United as youth. As Beckham's career closes down, one has to wonder if he wouldn't enjoy making his parent's proud and joining Spurs. And there is no doubt that Spurs can meet any transfer demands of Real Madrid (Beckham is in the last year of his contract) and, more importantly, Beckham's wage demands. Even if he doesn't go that route, there are plenty of other English clubs with bigger bank accounts than the entire MLS salivating at the prospect of bringing him back to England. So why would he move to Los Angeles? The Coup There are other reasons why to question the move. Why wouldn't Beckham sign a contract extension with Real Madrid? Why should we believe that Posh is really all that interested in moving to Los Angeles? Why would he choose the MLS if he spurs a move back to England? Why not another club in Spain? Or maybe Japan? Los Angeles and AEG very well may be on the verge of signing David Beckham. But with all the options the 32 year-old midfielder has to choose from, it's hard to believe it's a done deal. Such a signing for the MLS would be a coup. Coup's are messy things and more often than not they don't work out. I hope it does but I won't be holding my breath.


Kristofer said...

Why doesn't L.A. just get their own league, as all the stars seem like that's the only place they will play?

neilissimo said...

i think a main drawing point might be beckhams wife. she doesnt like david playing outside of london, and there are three candidiates in london that could possibly buy, arsenal, chelsea and spurs.

i cant see him going to america, yet....i still think he has something to give the english national team, but he'd never be selected if playing in mls, no way.