Becks back in LA, but for how long?

 

So David Beckham has made his long awaited return to the MLS, nearly 4 months after the date he was expected to be back on US soil. One of the conditions of Beckham’s loan move to AC Milan was that he would be back in time for the start of the MLS season in March, a promise that proved too difficult to keep for Beckham as he savoured the taste of world class football after his stint Stateside. Needless to say, the reception from the Galaxy fans was sour to say the least, with Becks getting jeered every time he touched the ball for his supposed lack of loyalty. His case hasn’t been helped by a playground tiff with Galaxy hero Landon Donovan, as each accused the other of unprofessionalism. Nothing like handbags at dawn in the media to prove your professionalism.

Looking back, it’s hard to understand what Galaxy, Donovan and the fans expected when Beckham moved to Milan. His move to LA originally stemmed from the fact that he believed his England career was over and, despite what he says, he will certainly have had an eye on his financial future and potential retirement options when he moved to America. When this all changed with Steve McClaren’s departure (and subsequent adoption of a Dutch accent) it reopened doors that Becks had never anticipated. So when AC Milan came knocking he was always going to jump at the chance and make it last as long as possible.

All hugs for now, but will it last?

All hugs for now, but will it last?

Now Beckham is back in California it’s a very different picture from that when he arrived. I was lucky enough to be in LA at that time and Beckham fever had really struck the city. Everyone was talking about ‘soccer’, Becks was all over the billboards and the Home Depot Centre was full every week. This was a stark contrast to the scene last night for Beckham’s comeback match against New York Red Bulls, and it remains to be seen if he can win back the fans affections.

But it seems that will be an uphill task, as the first news on his return was that he was interested in a move to the Premier League and that Fabio Capello had told him he must be playing European football to have a chance of going to the World Cup. We’ve always known that playing international football is top of Beckham’s priorities and he will undoubtedly do anything Mr Capello asks for in order to make that happen.  For me that that was the final nail in the Beckham/Galaxy coffin, and I don’t believe he will have time to win back the fans adoration as he’ll be on a plane back to European shores. And this time it’ll probably be for keeps.

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