David Beckham, once considered one of the best soccer (football) players in the world was told yesterday by his club, Real Madrid, that his contract would not be renewed. The news had been expected for weeks. Beckham has lost something in his step. He's not as fast as he used to be, and there has been much criticism that Becks doesn't seem to take the game as seriously as he once did.
So, what was the solution?
Go to Los Angeles.
The 31-year-old former England captain will sign a five-year contract worth as much as $250 million, according to Sky Sports. He'll join the Major League Soccer team in August, Beckham said in a statement today.
Beckham, acquired from Manchester United partly to help increase Madrid's merchandise sales, will play out the end of his career in the U.S. Since he and his England team exited in the quarterfinals of last year's World Cup, Beckham lost his place in the national team and has failed to secure a regular first-team berth at Madrid following Fabio Capello's appointment as coach.
If you have never seen David Beckham take a free kick, you have missed a thing of beauty. You've missed a thing of beautiful physics as he is renowned for being able to "bend" the ball so that it bypasses the defensive wall and swirl into the goal.
Unfortunately, lately, the only thing Beckham seems able to do is to take free kicks. Which leads to the question: Will American soccer actually create a "designated hitter" so to speak. That is, someone whose sole job is to come in and take free kicks? Beckham is only 31, and yet, his legs seem that of an older man.
Still, he may be able to bring magic to Major League Soccer. And, as someone who grew up in a family where soccer is a religion, that isn't such a bad thing.