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David Beckham Answers Critics In Galaxy Press Conference

David Beckham answered questions today during a LA Galaxy press conference in the build up to his team’s game tomorrow night against Red Bull New York (8pm ET, Thursday, Fox Soccer Channel).

The first question during the above video is from Grant Wahl, author of The Beckham Experiment, the controversial new book from the Sports Illustrated writer. You can tell by Beckham’s frosty response how he feels about the new book. Pay close attention to Beckham’s body language and his reiteration that England manager Fabio Capello wants Beckham playing at a European level in order to continue playing for England. The latter statement tells me everything I need to hear about how Beckham pays little value to playing in Major League Soccer.

The shame for Major League Soccer is that tomorrow night’s game is on Fox Soccer Channel and not ESPN or ESPN2. We’ll never forget the incredibly entertaining clash between these two teams from 2007, which was also televised by Fox Soccer Channel. If tomorrow night’s clash was on ESPN, we could definitely see a much larger viewing audience. Regardless, Beckham’s return will be intriguing to watch and all eyes will be on his interactions with Landon Donovan both on and off the field.

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  1. Fan

    July 17, 2009 at 4:44 pm

    Danielle..Thiery Henry had interest BEFORE Becks went to AC Milan and BEFORE this Grant Wahl’s fiasco ever happened. And he only had interest to go there AFTER he’s retired from international football. Like Raul. Like Ljeungberg right now. So there’s no commitment/professional/insulting/belittling and what crap IF (notice the big IF there – except for Ljeungberg) they go there.

    The fact that most of the fans there don’t even understand the order of the world football would just drive these players away, not just the still active ones, but perhaps those in retirement as well.

    Why was it when Beckham told THE TRUTH about MLS (seriously..all he said was just that MLS is a growing league, that it needs 10 or 15 years more at least for it to be able to grow being on par with other establish leagues, that its level is still below the World Cup standard..and yes, these ARE the TRUTH, among others), it is regarded as bullshit and insulting..while Donovan telling “the truth” in his state of jealousy PLUS the manipulation of situations by Grant Wahl were regarded as the honest statements ever made??! I’d call that bullshit and insulting too if just for the sake of fairness and the way it was conducted!

  2. soccer goals

    July 17, 2009 at 12:54 pm

    The Galaxy played well last night.

  3. Danielle

    July 17, 2009 at 11:10 am

    Gag me with a spoon! Lous and Cali you are so far up David Beckham’s you- know-what its ridiculous. For one, you must not watch that much soccer if you think David Beckham is that great, there are a ton of much better players around (just look in Europe’s second divisions haha okay that was too much but you get my point) he’s a superb free kick taker and passer but he not as great as you make him out to be, the main reason he’s so famous is his looks.

    Second No one is pissed or should be pissed about Beckham going on loan to AC Milan, it was a good oppurtunity and no one wouldve passed it up. its mainly the disparaging comments he made about MLS when he was there. For me that was just really unnecessary, go to Milan if you want but you dont have rag on MLS while your over there. It just made it blatantly obvious that the only reason he came to MLS to begin with is to be a hollywood celebrity with that plastic-looking wife of his and he sure doesnt take the league serious at all (i have pride in being an American soccer fan so I do blame him). If he was such an “ambassador” for the MLS, then he shouldnt have been dishing on it so much while he was away, my opinion he deserves the crap he gets for the rest of the time he plays here.

    Also I dont think it will hurt MLS, if Beckham is treated bad or leaves, I think it would look far worse if we let him bag on our league and still treat him like a king, have some pride people. I also think that in the next decade we could be competing with some of the leagues in Europe (notice I said Could people). For one, we have had other interest from big name players like Thierry Henry (much better than becks if you asked me) and if you think about it America is a far nicer place to play for a lot of the African talent who are subjected to racist jeering in most of Europe. Either way I say David Beckham dont let the door hit you in the patootie on your way out, Good riddance!

  4. Jake

    July 16, 2009 at 5:28 pm

    To me it is as simple as Beckham winning a cup title with LA = not that big of a deal vs. winning a world cup with England = a major deal. Obviously he wants his last chance to play in and win a world cup. However, I would say that the only thing we could gripe about, would be if he truly did not give 100% in the last half of the 2008 season. IF that is the case, then the coach should have benched him. Although I am sure there was too much pressure not to play him if he was healthy and only playing at 90%. Heck, I watched a few LA games last year just to check out Beckham on the pitch.

  5. David

    July 16, 2009 at 12:21 pm

    Loan is a part of the game that some fans/the general public may not understand, but that is not the point of contention. Beckham paid his own money in an attempt to STAY with AC Milan, not to just go on loan. He would not have come back if he was not contractually obligated to do so.

    Beckham is most concerned with 1) his image 2) playing in the World Cup one more time. Who knows why he came to MLS (some say Posh’s desire to start a fashion line/rise her celebrity in the States, what better place than L.A. to do that?), but it certainly was not to help the growth of soccer in the U.S.

    Playing MLS is not going to provide the opprotunity to get back on the England squad. Mr. “I will never play for any English team, but Manchester” has now said he WOULD consider playing in England again ever since Ancelotti moved from Milan to Chelsea, coincidence?

    I think David is a fine player and does some good charity work, but he dug his own grave her in the U.S. and now he wants out (who can blame him?) All this garbage about being behind MLS 100% is BS. If Chelsea called tomorrow he’d be off as soon as his lawyers could figure it out.

    Landon was being a bit petulant, but I think that is just his personality and he let his jealousy get to him.

    Bottom line: The Beckham boost of 2007 faltered greatly and this “controversy” has done nothing but get a bump in attention/coverage for the MLS, which is not a bad thing. No such thing as bad publicity

  6. Louis

    July 16, 2009 at 10:47 am

    Agree with the above posts. The anger MLS fans show towards Beckham just shows a lack of understanding of world football and the relative (non)importance of MLS without Beckham. It’s pretty critical that MLS fans show some degree of respect towards him in his time here or it is unlikely top European stars even at an older age will come here, unless they are 35 and have absolutely ZERO chance of ever playing for their national team or a top club again.

  7. Tad

    July 16, 2009 at 9:57 am

    Thanks for the level comments. Jack and Cali read my mind and, frankly, what I’ve thought of this whole situation for some time. I’m also pretty sure that what Lieweke has impressed on Beckham as he recruited him was the importance of his role in gaining attention for the league around the world as well as in the US, which he has to stunning proportions. Not necessarily something it was completely ready for, but there it is.
    I would just add that American’s who haven’t grown up or lived abroad can have no frame of reference regarding how important the international game is to players and fans around the world and what how staggeringly huge a meaning the World Cup has elsewhere. There is just nothing to compare it to here. So its hard for people to understand why no foreign player would see going on loan to make themselves available for selection to a World Cup squad as a conflict of interest to anything else they do in the game. In fact, anywhere else it just makes them more valuable to their clubs.

  8. Fred

    July 16, 2009 at 1:16 am

    ERT09 is exactly the reason MLS snobs continue to be a niche audience while European soccer and latin futbol grow by leaps and bounds. MLS fans don’t even understand the global transfer market and what is involved. This site sux also. Kartik is good at analyzing the US team and I come for that but the rest of this pro MLS crap and pro USL crap makes me want to vomit. I’m glad both leagues are there to give our players a place to start out but if we right things like that piece on Holden wanting a guy who has a chance to be a serious international to stay in MLS, we will get what we deserve.

  9. Cali Comet

    July 16, 2009 at 1:01 am

    I do not get all the bitterness either. Here is a top world footballer who came to MLS to try and grow the game. He didn’t realize the management structure of the Galaxy and the league was so dysfunctional and that you couldn’t just sign players because the league owns the contract and their all sorts of squad limits. He tried is best and could have easily have gotten his attorneys involved and walked away this past year but he didn’t. When insignificant footballers in the world like Landon Donovan who no one in Europe respects start pissing on him he has every right to walk away. Keep in mind MLS was ranked 77th by the IFFHS in the survey of top worldwide leagues. MLS fans always overstate how good a league they have and how good the quality of play is and how good the player development, etc. As an American who wants MLS to succeed trust me when I say the vast majority of European 2nd divisions are better than MLS. It’s also quite funny that MLS likes to say it is on par with the Mexican League. They must be talking about the Mexican second division. How MLS fans treat Beckham the next few months will go a long way towards determining if any other world superstars will ever want to sign in this league. If things go badly as I suspect they will we can continue being a backwater for club football while patting ourselves on the back saying, “look at what we’ve built in such a short time.” Look at the A-League and J-Leagues, both young and both already better than MLS.

  10. Jack

    July 15, 2009 at 11:42 pm

    This was a good news conference. It seems Beckham has two main priorities playing for England in the World Cup and being a part of the growth of soccer in America. I for one appreciate his efforts in trying to grow the sport here and hope he continues. Obviously this is important to him why else would he put up with all the grief that the press and the U.S. public are giving him. Frankly I am surprised by the animosity some people have developed for him due to his loan to AC Milan. Loans or temporary transfers are a part of soccer. How can we get mad at a person for doing what makes him happy isn’t that what we all do. Heck the guy donated some of his own money to MLS so he could go to Europe which to me seems very honorable. If he wasn’t honorable he would have just quit and negotiated his own deal with AC Milan.

  11. ERT09

    July 15, 2009 at 10:31 pm

    Beckham should be booed off the field by anyone who cares about this league.

  12. BayVol

    July 15, 2009 at 8:24 pm

    This soap opera is kinda silly imo. He has always been honest about his desire to play for England. The Galaxy knew what they were getting and they got it….a part time player which brought them attention and money. The soccer public has to get over it and move on.

    The major point I have is his “ambassador” statement which I feel is a crock of you know what.

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