American dream: 'Beckham experiment' in pictures

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

 

As David Beckham celebrates his first trophy with the LA Galaxy, it seems his presence has finally helped the MLS become a commercial success story. Here we take a look at Beckham's career in America.

1. Beckham left Real Madrid and joined LA Galaxy in July 2007 for a reported deal worth $250m. The move was surrounded with much fan-fare, as well as much scepticism, particularly in Europe, about the England midfielder’s motivation for moving to the US.

2. His signing resulted in the club being able to pull off a five-year shirt sponsorship deal with Herbalife nutrition company worth $20m as well as a peak increase in their ticket revenues. Galaxy jersey sales had already reached a record figure of over 250,000 prior to this formal introduction.

3. Beckham made his debut on 21 July 2007 as a substitute in a 1-0 defeat to Chelsea as part of the World Series of Soccer pre-season tournament, but picked up an injury ruling him out for the next four games.

4. On 5 August the team caused a stir when they flew on a charter flight for an away match rather than flying commercial (MLS normally forbids charter flights claming they provide competitive advantage). They also stayed in a five star hotel instead of the usual MLS-mandated modest hotels.

5. Beckham made his league debut on 9 August 2007 as a substitute in the 1-0 away defeat to DC United in front of a sell-out crowd of 46,686, nearly three times the average DC United home crowd.

6. He made his first start, again against DC United, in the SuperLiga semi-final on 15 August. He was made captain and scored his first goal for the club from a free-kick as well as setting up Landon Donovan in the 2-0 victory. In the final against Pachuca, he injured his knee ruling him out for six weeks. Beckham failed to lay his hands on his first piece of silverware as Galaxy were defeated on penalties in the cup competition comprising teams from across north America.

7. He returned for the final MLS game of the season on 21 October as a substitute in the 1-0 defeat to Chicago Fire in which Galaxy were eliminated from play-off contention. He finished the season playing eight matches, with one goal and three assists.

8. The following season he scored a goal from the half-way line against Kansas Wizards, reminiscent of his Manchester United goal against Wimbledon. Overall it was a disappointing season as the California based side failed to qualify for the end of season play-offs again.

9. After his loan move to AC Milan his team-mate Donovan criticised the move saying “my sense is that David is clearly frustrated, that he’s unhappy and, honestly, that he thinks it’s a joke. I also kind of feel that he’s taking the team for granted. I don’t see dedication or commitment to this team, and that’s troubling”. Beckham branded the comments “unprofessional”.

10. After he returned from Milan the following season, some LA fans showed their anger towards him missing the first half of the season, holding up signs saying “Go home fraud” and “Part time player”. One fan enraged Beckham so much that the former England captain jumped the advertisement boards and tried to confront him.

11. His return however inspired their rise from third to first in the Western Conference. He also played a key role in winning the Western Conference final with a 2-0 defeat over Houston Dynamo. However they lost the MLS Cup final on 22 November 2009 in a penalty shoot-out to Real Salt Lake in which Beckham scored.

12. After his second spell at Milan he returned to help guide the team to their second Western Conference final in as many years, but saw Galaxy beaten 3-0 by FC Dallas. They won their first MLS Supporters’ Shield since 2002, which recognises the team with the best regular season record.

13. This season LA Galaxy beat New York Red Bulls to reach their third successive Western Conference final where they beat Real Salt Lake 3-1. Beckham picked up assists against both teams as Galaxy advanced to their second MLS final during Beckham’s time at the club.

14. Having already retained  the MLS Supporters’ Shield this season, LA Galaxy also won the MLS championship beating Houston Dynamo in the final.

News
Pro-Russia rebels guard a train containing the bodies of victims of the Malaysia Airlines flight MH 17 crash in Torez, Ukraine
i100
Life and Style
Child's play: letting young people roam outdoors directly contradicts the current climate
lifeHow much independence should children have?
Arts and Entertainment
Tycoons' text: Warren Buffett and Bill Gates both cite John Brookes' 'Business Adventures' as their favourite book
booksFind out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Arts and Entertainment
<p><strong>2008</strong></p>
<p>Troubled actor Robert Downey Jr cements his comeback from drug problems by bagging the lead role in Iron Man. Two further films follow</p>
filmRobert Downey Jr named Hollywood's highest paid actor for second year running
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Property
Sign here, please: Magna Carta Island
propertyYours for a cool £4m
News
people
News
The Commonwealth flag flies outside Westminster Abbey in central London
news
Arts and Entertainment
Struggling actors who scrape a living working in repertory theatres should get paid a 'living wage', Sir Ian McKellen has claimed
theatre
News
Skye McCole Bartusiak's mother said she didn't use drink or drugs
peopleActress was known for role in Mel Gibson film The Patriot
Arts and Entertainment
tvWebsite will allow you to watch all 522 shows on-demand
Arts and Entertainment
filmThe Rock to play DC character in superhero film
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Damon Albarn is starting work on a new West End musical
artsStar's 'leftfield experimental opera' is turning mainstream
Life and Style
Paul and his father
artsPaul Carter wants to play his own father in the film of his memoirs
Sport
Ben Stokes trudges off after his latest batting failure for England as Ishant Sharma celebrates one of his seven wickets
cricket
Arts and Entertainment
Members of the public are invited to submit their 'sexcapades' to Russell T Davies' new series Tofu
tv
News
Sky's Colin Brazier rummages through an MH17 victim's belongings live on air
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Keira Knightley and Benedict Cumberbatch star in the Alan Turing biopic The Imitation Game
arts + ents'The Imitation Game' stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightley
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn
Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Meet the man who doesn't want to go down in history as the country's last Scottish Secretary
Legoland Windsor's master model-makers reveal the tricks of their trade (including how to stop the kids wrecking your Eiffel Tower)

Meet the people who play with Lego for a living

They are the master builders: Lego's crack team of model-makers, who have just glued down the last of 650,000 bricks as they recreate Paris in Windsor. Susie Mesure goes behind the scenes
The 20 best days out for the summer holidays: From Spitfires to summer ferry sailings

20 best days out for the summer holidays

From summer ferry sailings in Tyne and Wear and adventure days at Bear Grylls Survival Academy to Spitfires at the Imperial War Museum Duxford and bog-snorkelling at the World Alternative Games...
Open-air theatres: If all the world is a stage, then everyone gets in on the act

All the wood’s a stage

Open-air productions are the cue for better box-office receipts, new audiences, more interesting artistic challenges – and a picnic
Rand Paul is a Republican with an eye on the world

Rupert Cornwell: A Republican with an eye on the world

Rand Paul is laying out his presidential stall by taking on his party's disastrous record on foreign policy
Self-preservation society: Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish

Self-preservation society

Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish
Generation gap opens a career sinkhole

Britons live ever longer, but still society persists in glorifying youth

We are living longer but considered 'past it' younger, the reshuffle suggests. There may be trouble ahead, says DJ Taylor