Welcome to the World of Beckham blog, we aim to keep you up to date with developments in the career of David Beckham a footballer from the UK who has played for some of the top teams in the world.

Sunday, 30 August 2009

LA Galaxy 1 Chivas 0

The crowd had to wait nearly 80 minutes to see a goal in the closely-fought local derby match, and when it came it was a rare Beckham goal in open play that sealed the match for The Galaxy.
Both Keepers were kept busy at various times during the game and the action was fairly evenly split between the two ends - to be fair the first-half analysis probably had Chivas 'ahead on points'. In the second half Beckham had more chances to send free-kicks and crosses into the box, but it was a deflected header from a Galaxy throw-in which eventually fell kindly for Beckham just on the edge of the penalty box. He crossed it from the right hand side of the box and against the left hand upright and into the back of the net. Frustration followed for Chivas who soon after had a man sent off, and then another booking for a tackle which incensed The Galaxy including Beckham who has shown that he is not shy to defend his colleagues when they are subject to bad tackles.
The game finished 1-0, Beckham has something to show for his efforts and to silence his critics. He appears to be enjoying his football which is good for the Galaxy as they seek to consolidate and then maybe improve on their league position, and good for England who play twice in the next ten days.

Thursday, 27 August 2009

Upcoming games

LA Galaxy face Chivas this weekend for the final leg of the Honda SuperClasico - Galaxy already have a win and a draw under their belts, meaning that another win or draw wins them the trophy once again. A return to winning ways is required after having recorded a win, a loss and a draw in the last three league matches.

England line up to face two games at Wembley, the first a friendly against Slovenia on Saturday 5th September, the second signifies a return to World Cup qualifiers against Ukraine the following Wednesday. During this time, The Galaxy are taking a break and resume hostilities on the 12th September, they will be hoping that Beckham returns fit and raring to go for the match against FC Dallas.

Englands' remaining World Cup qualifiers (after next Wednesday) will be Ukraine (away) on 10th October and Belarus (at Wembley) on 14th. With a good result against Ukraine, England may well be already qualified for the World Cup, they are currently standing on top of their group with a 100% record.

Sunday, 23 August 2009

DC United 0 LA Galalxy 0

A tough battle ensued in the first half in which neither team really established superiority although both teams made good chances. LA remained tight at the back, whilst DC did their best to negate the efforts of Beckham and Donovan.
Ricketts managed to keep the best DC United efforts out whilst the DC defence was equal to anything that LA threw at them in the first half, the teams left the field at half time having entertained the crowd with end-to-end football. Too few shots on goal though, honours even... the score at 0-0.
The second half managed to live up to the promise of the first - the game continued at a similar tempo and no quarter was given in the battle to retain possession, yellow cards were handed out like party invitations to both sides. As the game went on it began to look more and more like a goalless draw was on the cards despite the frenetic action.
In the closing minutes the teams looked tired and passes were going astray, neither team had done enough to deserve a win and despite battles all over the field there was not enough action in the box and when there was attacking play, the finishing was not good enough. In the final minute of the 90, it was Beckham himself who had a chance from distance, the DC keeper just able to get down low on his right side and push the ball around the post. After 3 minutes of extra time, the game ends 0-0.

Thursday, 20 August 2009

Chicago Fire 0 LA Galaxy 2

Chicago were subdued by the Galaxy on Wednesday as for once, The Galaxy defence stood strong to deny Chicago virtually any scoring chances throughout the entire match. Mike Magee ran amok at the front for The Galaxy and scored in the 23rd minute giving LA a 1-0 lead going into the break.
In the second half with Galaxy firmly in control, Donavan doubled the score with a break away goal scoring with his right foot for a change. Despite the clean-sheet, a shadow was cast on the precedings for The Galaxy when Donovan Ricketts had to be taken off after a clash with a Chicago player in the penalty box. No doubt he will be fully recovered for the next match, although he was almost surplus to requirements on this occassion, it is often Ricketts that keeps the LA in games when the defence lets them down.
This helps to boost LA's standings in the Western Conference, and the weekend brings another away game at DC United.

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Beckham reflects on his future

The Galaxy have games in quick succession this week, but Beckham has a chance to reflect on his personal progress after the harsh red card he received at the weekend. He has been quoted in the British press as having stated that the Premiership is not his destination after the MLS season closes despite reported interest from Chelsea (Ancelloti now installed...) and Tottenham. He has reiterated that his desire is to play for AC Milan again in the build up to the 2010 World Cup.

England manager Fabio Capello has made it clear that Beckham needs regular first team football in Europe to be considered for the England squad, although his place is not particularly threatened by any pretenders to the right wing position.

Wright-Phillips is certainly nippy down the wing, but has not really delivered his best performances in the England shirt, he looks like a substitute at best. Theo Walcott is much more likely to be able to carve out a permanent place if his best performances can be reproduced, and David Bentley has seemingly disappeared without a trace looking for first team football possibly at Aston Villa after not being able to establish himself at Spurs. I like Glenn Johnson at right back, so whoever can form a good understanding with him would be first choice for me. Johnson likes to get forward more than most, and Beckham with his defensive work-rate remains more of a natural choice as a partner on the right.

Beckham has been played centrally, a position that he is more than capable of maintaining but here there is far more competition for places with the likes of Lampard, Gerrard, Barry and Carrick all fighting for position, with plenty more in the wings.

Sunday, 16 August 2009

Seattle Sounders 2 LA GAlaxy 0

In a hard fought match, Beckham only lasted 17 minutes before committing a foul which saw him being sent off with a straight red. He lunged at a Sounders player and although there was no real damage or malicious intent, the challenge was rash - most ref's would probably have given a yellow at most but Beckham can attract un-wanted attention from officials as well as fans...
Down to ten men and without their most influential players (Donovan was benched with swine flu), LA were 1-0 down at the end of the first half which continued in the aggressive vein in which it had started. Despite Donovan returning to the fray, and a second yellow shown to a Sounders player to even up the sides, LA went down another goal and another player when Eddie Lewis got himself a straight red too. The game finished 2-0 to Seattle and The Galaxy's long unbeaten run in the league lies shattered allowing Seattle to go one place higher on goal difference, The Galaxy now sit in third position in the Western Conference two points behind league-leaders Houston.

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Holland 2 England 2

This was to be the most testing opposition that England had faced for some time, Holland being ranked 3rd in current world rankings. Beckham would be under the spotlight as would Green in the England goal and Rooney up front.
The presence of Holland's front men had England struggling as Robben proved to have the pace to out-run just about anybody on the pitch. Robben's fellow front men Dirk Kuyt and Van Persie looked likely to be a threat to anyone's unbeaten record and a shaky England succumbed twice in the first half through school-boy errors from the normally solid Ferdinand and Barry. England had their chances but must have been gutted at half-time to go into the tunnel trailing a good side almost entirely through their own fault. Beckham had a good half and was able to distribute from centre midfield as well as adding his weight to the defence when required, he did not return for the second half, but Capello must have been pleased with what he saw from his most capped player.
Both teams took the opportunity to experiment and England must have been somewhat relieved to see Robben substituted for the second half. Cappello took the chance to bring on Defoe, Shaun Wright-Phillips and Michael Carrick for Emile Heskey, Beckham and Barry. It took four minutes for Defoe to get his name on the score sheet as Lampard sent a hopeful long ball up the field leaving Defoe one-on-one with the keeper. Under pressure from fast-retreating defenders, Defoe expertly curled the ball around the keeper with his left foot to drag the score back to 2-1. In the same half Capello brought on Milner (for Ashley Young) and Carlton Cole (for Rooney). Cole had a number of opportunities and looked like a likely prospect for the future showing good control and ability to hold the ball as well as strength and shooting ability. As England established a hold over the game, it was Defoe again who scored to level the score at 2-2. Milner bravely headed the ball off the foot of Heitinga giving himself acres of space in which to cross from the left. He sent the ball scudding along the goal line for Defoe to slide onto for a tap-in, closely followed by Wright-Phillips who would certainly have converted if Defoe weren't there.
The remaining 13 minutes were tense especially when Holland had a free kick right outside the box in the closing minutes, but the game ended honours even and England should really be kicking themselves that they didn't stay a little tighter at the back and end up with an impressive victory.
The game taught us that the tendency for England to make silly mistakes at the back has not gone away, that Robert Green is a good keeper, that Beckham is still worth his weight and England still have strikers that could have an impact on the World Cup stage next year.

Saturday, 8 August 2009

New England Revolution 1 LA Galaxy 2

On the day that Fabio Capello named David Beckham in the squad for Wednesday's friendly against Holland, The Galaxy take on The Revolution away from home.
The game started well with chances for both sides, The Revolution were establishing in-roads down the Galaxy's left-hand side, but it was Donovan snatching a volley on the edge of the box who struck first giving Galaxy a 1-0 lead on the 21-minute mark. The Revolution continued to push and get chances on The Galaxy's right hand side too, but despite a couple of goal-mouth scrambles, the half finished 1-0 to The Galaxy. Beckham looked comfortable in the middle of the field and seemed to enjoy mixing it up. Donovan Ricketts in the Galaxy goal was in fine form, filling what has been something of a vacant role for Galaxy in the recent past. Ricketts has established himself as a safe pair of hands and is one of the keys to recent Galaxy successes.

Seven minutes into the second half, Galaxy consolidated their lead when Eddie Lewis looped the ball in from the left and the Revolution keeper came but didn't gather. The ball fell to Kirovski who managed to squeeze the ball into the net, extending the lead to 2-0 to The Galaxy. The game continued at a reasonable rate with both sides making decent chances although The Galaxy back line caught The Revolution off-side on far too many occasions. The game had some flash points, Beckham getting involved and showing his passion where he could easily have taken a back-seat and spared himself for International duty next week.
Mansally who earlier got himself booked for elbowing a Galaxy player in the head (and earning himself special attention from Beckham) earned himself a penalty ten minutes from the end giving New England a much-needed goal and hopes of getting back into the game. Beckham was substituted 5 minutes from the end, replaced by Chris Birchall. The Revolution had all the momentum in the closing minutes, but failed to convert their effort into a goal - the game finishes 2-1 to The Galaxy

All-in-all an encouraging performance from Galaxy on a ground where they have had little success in the past. A host of mistakes from New England proved to be as decisive as the goals that came from LA in the final analysis.

Sunday, 2 August 2009

Barcelona 2 LA Galaxy 1

93,000 fans turned out at the Rose Bowl in Pasedena proving that despite the best efforts of the MLS to ruin the game of football (soccer if you must) in the US, it can still draw tremendous public support. With such stars as Donovan, Beckham, Lionel Messi, Thierry Henry, Rafael Marquez, Dani Alves and Xavi Hernandez on show, this was a rare opportunity...
Barcelona took only 11 minutes to establish a lead when Pedro Rodriguez took advantage of a Messi rebound off the back of Galaxy defender DeLaGarza. Barcelona showed their class and had control of most of the play but equilibrium returned a minute from the break when Beckham sent a 25 yard free kick sailing into the back of the net taking Galaxy into the half-time break on level terms.
Beckham was booed pretty much every time he got the ball, but this is not a new experience for the star, and he is not naive enough to believe a goal will silence all the critics. He has played solidly since returning to the Galaxy. If his solid performances on the pitch have made no difference to the element of supporters who prefer to voice their malcontent than show support for their team, then a goal will probably not change their mind.
Twenty minutes into the second half, Suarez, one of the multitude of Barcelona substitues buried the ball in the net for the second and Barca goal of the match. Beckham stayed on the pitch up to the 87th minute before making way for Mike Magee. Maybe Bruce Arena wanted to give the loyal fans chance to clap Beckham off the pitch.
Let's hope Beckham can add to his tally soon and leave the boo boys with less to shout about - you can't continue to boo someone who is not only putting in a performance but scoring goals for you against Barcelona....