This deal keeps looking better
Yeah, I know there's more to post about than Beckham. Things like DC's promising win in Honduras or Houston's tired legs in Costa Rica. But this Beckham deal just keeps looking better all the time.
David Beckham's playing contract with the Los Angeles Galaxy is worth about $27.5 million in base salary over five seasons, according to a person familiar with Major League Soccer agreements.
Whichever AEG/MLS executive who said that the total agreement could be worth up to $250million sure got a lot of bang for his buck. As things now pan out, LA look to be getting a really sweet deal out of this. Here's where the $250 million came from.
"The deal to bring Beckham to America is thought to be the biggest in sporting history, with industry experts estimating the worth to the player in excess of $250 million," AEG's news release said.
Beckham's contract, according to several people familiar with the details, is a complex and probably unique arrangement that gives the 31-year-old midfielder a percentage of club sponsorship, merchandizing and uniform sales contracts. Promotional arrangements also are included.
A more likely blockbuster announcement from MLS is the jersey sponsorship for David Beckham'sLosAngeles Galaxy. Two sources have confirmed that the bidding is down to Citibank and Herbalife (and, interestingly, not Beckham sponsor adidas). The Citibank offer to have its name across the front of Galaxy shirt, the sources said, is a monster: five years, $49 million. A decision is expected any day.
Now, first of all, this is only a rumor but Mark Zeigler is one of the better soccer writers in this country and I consider him pretty reliable.
Second, remember all those editorials on both sides of the Atlantic saying how crazy AEG and the Galaxy were to pay Beckham that much money? Well, I've already posted a more realistic look at how the deal is worked. And if that is even close to being accurate, then it looks to me like LA are getting Beckham for nothing. Citibank will pay his salary and the rest is all endorsements. What an incredible deal for LA and MLS.
Homeless in LA
I usually try ignore the human interest type things. However, the news that the Familia Spice is having difficulty finding living accommodations in LA which meet their needs is...well, amusing. I lived in LA for 10 years and can't say I ever found the perfect place to live there...then again, I didn't (and still don't) have the budget they have to work with.
It's lonely at the top
My Chargers just hired Norv Turner to be head coach??!!!! What's Spanos thinking???!!! I mean, this has to be....errr...sorry, wrong football.
So, Zidane isn't greedy. After all, he doesn't want Backham money. Someone needs to explain to him that Beckham isn't being paid to play. Perhaps MLS should structure a deal just like the one Becks has. Half of shirt sales etc. Nah, he's French. It's not as if the French are arrogant or anything.
Speaking of Becks, does anyone feel sorry for their current house hunting plight? Finding the right home for the right price in LA isn't easy. Besides, why are they so opposed to remodeling? I'm sure they could have everything done by July.
Now that the US is playing in Copa America, people are still complaining. Ok, so it's only Jamie Trecker. Problem is, he's missing the point. First thing, the coaches of the players who are with teams in Europe probably aren't too excited about them playing in two tournaments this summer. It's much easier for him to justify playing them in our own competition than in a tournament where we are invited guests. Second, the World Cup is now 3 1/2 years off. Most of the Gold Cup players have played in big events and have that experience. The younger players he'll be taking South for the most part won't have that experience. Why not give them a chance to get their feet wet in games which don't mean anything to teams from our Confederation?
The reason the Gold Cup (and Open Cup) is perceived as meaningless (as Trecker pointed out) is because hacks like him make it out to be that. Well done to Bradley for doing this right.
Then again, you'd expect something like that from Bellamy...after all, he spent time in Naarfeck. Serves him right. But c'mon guys, fighting over karaoke? You're supposed to be drunk and out of tune...if you're sober, you should be smart enough to leave.
Ah, wouldn't it be great to be young and have a shitload of cash to blow. Must be nice.
The Beckham show
The global media attention around MLS and the Galaxy in particular has never been anything close to what it's been the past few weeks. I mean, TV camera's reporting on Open Tryouts at the HDC allowing a kid from England to fly over to LA, spent an hour on the pitch, receive his 15 minutes of fame in the process and now have the ability to tell his grand kids we had a trial with a team David Beckham was on. Don't get me wrong, I don't blame him...it's just that 2 months ago, there wasn't enough media around to find that story. This summer we'll be seeing an unprecedented amount of media types at the HDC. Looks like MLS is getting some Return on their Investment already.
However, there is a flip side to this. Regardless of what many on the other side of the Atlantic are saying, Beckham is still in his prime...at least that's my irrelevant opinion. The way he has handled the turmoil of the last few weeks is incredible. I could see a lot of players folding under what he went though. Last week he created quite a bit of news when he scored in his return. This week, however, things didn't go quite as well for Becks. Personally, though I am a bit bias these days, I thought the card was pretty harsh. However, two things got be about this. First, the fans in Madrid were positive about Beckham's performance. To go through what he has the last few weeks and still come out with a reception like he got just shows the personality and determination of the guy. I can't wait to see him in LA. Second, have you noticed how much attention the US media is giving Beckham? There's been talk about the US being the last place the "Beckham Brand" hasn't taken over. Looks to me like he'll be a household name before he arrives. Think about it, how many people do you know who don't watch soccer mentioned the signing after it was announced.
This is gonna be a wild summer, between Beckham, losCopas America y Oro...and, of course, MLS. Now, if only the snow would melt.
So much going on
I haven't been able to post for a while. Who knew Grad School would take up so much of my time? Yeah, I knew it would but I'm sure no one reading this cares about my study habits.
A sure sign of the times in MLS is the announcement that Matchnight will be shutting down. Yeah, I'm sad to see the site go. Lee and Shane have done a fantastic job of informing the fans with a professional looking site. I'm certain they ran the site on a shoestring budget (if any budget at all) and devoted a lot of their time to the site. For all of that--and the fact that I've even had a couple of things I wrote published there--I thank them. However, the league and the sport is growing in this country. More "traditional" media are covering the league. It remains to be seen if they'll do as good a job as sites like Matchnight. The only bad news is that it means I'll need to remove the widgets on the right of this page. Thanks guys.
Another sign of the future is the launch of the new Chelsea YouTube page. Honestly, this is a idea which should have come to life some time ago. At a time when so many media companies are threatening legal action if their content isn't removed from YouTube or similar services, it's good to see Chelsea embrace this media. I hope other teams (and MLS) follow suit with something similar. Folks, the Internet isn't going anywhere and it's only going to become a bigger part of our lives so you're better off using it rather than fighting it. Back when Metallica (well, Lars Ulrich) was fighting Napster I thought it was a big mistake to take those actions. After all, Metallica probably never would become as well known as they did in the mid-eighties if it wasn't for illegal tapes of their early recordings being circulated. I'm sure Radiohead would agree with me. So, to sum up what I'm rambling here, more stuff on the internet means more attention to your product which means more people willing to fork out money on your stuff. What am I missing here. Fingers crossed MLS will be doing the same sort of thing soon.
AEG/MLS/LA Galaxy have spent (are spending?) a lot of money to bring a certain one-footed freekick/corner taker to the HDC. At this point, I'm not sure there's any chance the deal can go wrong. MLS (and the Galaxy in particular) are getting more publicity than ever both here in the US and worldwide. Has a bunch of has-beens, could-bes and never will-besgot this much attention before? I'm sure everyone involved are happy with the deal. Hey, and Capello is now eating crow. I wonder what odds I could get on an LA Galaxy player wearing an England shirt in the next year or so?
Could Zizou be next? If the worlds media went gaga over Becks to LA, Mr. Headbutt would have the US media (at least the majority who don't know anything about soccer) waiting in anticipation for his next headbutt. I'm not sure that would be a bad thing...at least Jim Rome and his clones would be tuned in.
A few weeks ago Ipswich made it to the fifth round of the FA Cup for the first time in 11 years. I had started this rambling about the romance of Cup competition. Then went on about how Ipswich could be in for some good money (and a possible TV appearance) with the right draw. Too bad we drew Watford--little money from the match and a trip home without a spot in the sixth round. However, about the same time, US Soccer announced the format for the Open Cup this summer. So, LA, Columbus, NY, RSL, Arse...um Colorado and KC will have "play-in" games against each other. This way, only eight (two of the previously mentioned and the other six teams) will be in the actual Open Cup. Now, while I like the idea of MLS teams playing each other earlier on giving smaller teams more of a chance to move on, I still wish the match-ups were more random. Why can't there be a random draw? This can be done on a regional basis. Divide the country into 4 regions. Try and align even numbers of teams (regardless of their league) in each region and have random draws for each round. Then with they reach the last eight, or sixteen, make the competition national. On top of that, why hasn't US Soccer been able to find a naming sponsor for the Cup? They've got plenty of sponsorship contacts. Nationwide, there are plenty of people who come out to games, it's not like the sponsors name wouldn't be used quite a bit. I'm sure the rights would be enough to sweeten the pot for the winners (and other teams doing well) and also not put smaller teams in financial difficulty...or maybe they just don't care. At least Naarich lost today.
RIP Mr. Adler. I never knew you but you brought joy to every armchair coach. I know my life (and viewing habits) would be very different if it wasn't for you. Thank you.
Finally, if you are reading this at work and are missing the big game on FSC, click here.
Yep, it's that same scoreline again. I doubt I'll ever get tired of it either. Now, if only we could do that South of the border...but why am I being negative. It's the scoreboard that counts tonight. We'll dissect the actual performance later.