Soccer: Where next for Beckham after Galaxy exit?

Mon Nov 19, 2012 11:26pm EST
 
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By Simon Evans

MIAMI (Reuters) - Former England captain David Beckham, hailed as a success for soccer in the United States, will say his farewell to LA Galaxy in next month's MLS Cup final with one more mission yet to accomplish.

It was only in January that Beckham signed a new deal with the Galaxy but his departure, announced on Monday, paves the way for him to enjoy a last hurrah elsewhere while the Galaxy could take the chance to look for a new big name in his place.

After five-and-a-half seasons in Los Angeles, where Beckham moved from Real Madrid in 2007, the midfielder insists he feels ready for "one more challenge" before he hangs up his boots.

The 37-year-old Beckham has struggled with injuries of late, missing almost two months of action before this month's play-offs, and it is hard to imagine him being recruited by a top European team.

A year ago he was strongly linked to French club Paris St Germain but in the past 12 months not only has Beckham's ability to deal with the aches and strains of the game declined but PSG have moved on with a series of high profile signings.

However the Englishman's noted ability to grab media attention, sell merchandise and boost attendances while still curling in his trademark free-kicks and spraying cross field passes, makes him an attractive proposition for an emerging club or league looking for a marketing breakthrough.

A source close to Beckham told Reuters that while it was still early in the process of him finding a new team, several clubs from several countries had already shown interest.

The Football Federation of Australia (FFA) said last week that they had made an approach for Beckham, looking to bring him into the A-League where former Italy and Juventus star Alessandro Del Piero is already playing.   Continued...

 
British soccer star David Beckham sits courtside as the Los Angeles Lakers play the Dallas Mavericks during their NBA basketball game in Los Angeles, October 30, 2012. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson