Friday, August 17, 2007

Beckham Makes His Mark as MLS Tries to Turn "Soccer" Into "Football" in USA

MLS news.
David Beckham finally took the field last night (August 15) as captain of the Los Angeles Galaxy at the club's Home Depot Center in California. Playing at something approaching full speed for the first time in his new "kit", the bendy one scored once from a free kick at 20 meters and placed an assist at the feet of linemate Landon Donovan for a second half clincher. The Galaxy advanced, 2-0, to the first ever finals of the brand new SuperLiga tournament featuring MLS and Mexican league clubs.

Beckham's heroics come just one month into his MLS career and one day after former league star Freddy Adu debuted with Benfica of Portugal. Adu, entering the league as barely a teenager in 2004, had been touted as the star who could bring US soccer some star power and some devoted fans. After helping DC United win MLS Cup in his first season he made clear his intention to play professionally in Europe. He departed Real Salt Lake City, his last MLS club, for Portugal at nearly the exact moment that Beckham arrived from Madrid in July.

MLS has become the most successful professional soccer league in the history of the USA over the eleven years of its existence, but soccer still has yet to achieve the same status here as it does in those countries where it is known as "football". In the US, "soccer" is associated with moms driving minivans, and co-eds (mostly female) kicking the ball around at private colleges.

If Beckham can change that image, and give the US game the same kind of street-cred that Tiger Woods has given golf, or that John McEnroe gave tennis in the 1980's, MLS is hoping that fans and advertisers will naturally follow.

Bet with Bet 365

World Soccer News

Soccer betting tips

Soccer Books & DVDs

No comments: