Outside the Box: No Becks appeal in Auckland as Galaxy loss is out of this world

They love him in Los Angeles and Milan but Auckland, New Zealand, is less keen on the venerable David Beckham after an LA Galaxy match billed around him lost the Auckland Regional Council NZ$1.7 million (£630,000). The game was played there last December, shortly before Becks began his loan period with Milan, and the hoo-ha about who is to blame for the huge loss is now at full throttle. The local city council say they highlighted the financial risk and decided against underwriting the match, but the regional council recommended going ahead and have now admitted it was "a disaster", with revenue reaching less than half the break-even price after players such as Edgar Davids were hired for exorbitant fees to play for the "Oceania All Stars".

MLS 'don't need Becks'

As the former deputy commissioner of Major League Soccer who was intimately involved with Beckham's signing for the Galaxy two years ago, Arsenal's new chief executive, Ivan Gazidis, is in an interesting position to comment on the possibility of Becks staying at Milan rather than returning to California: "I've always said it's not the David Beckham League. If he were to leave, it wouldn't have a significant impact in setting the League back."

Staying up is Chiles play

The most extraordinary example yet of 'Match Of The Day' pundits prematurely promising clubs would be safe from relegation occurred last Sunday; so much so that it was presumably a well-intentioned joke. After a hopeless West Bromwich Albion were outplayed by Fulham to remain bottom of the table, Lee Dixon told the Baggies-supporting presenter Adrian Chiles: "They'll be OK." It was like hearing a parent console an upset child (or Chiles) by saying: "There, there, it's all right" when both know it isn't. Albion's manager, Tony Mowbray, announced in these pages last weekend that he prefers playing with his children to watching 'MOTD', which he hasn't done all season. A pity; he could have learnt something from Dixon's more serious analysis of the team's failure to "engage" opponents who had the ball (i.e. get anywhere near them).

Hot Toddi can save Iceland

Iceland's economy has collapsed and its government resigned, so who better to sort out the mess than, er, the former Stoke, Preston and Derby midfielder Thordur Gudjonsson? Nephew of the previous prime minister, Geir Haarde, and son of the Crewe manager, Gudjon Thordarson, "Toddi" is standing as an Independent Party candidate in elections later this month. "It's essential that new people with new ideas, untarnished by the economic crash, are given a chance," he said.

QPR's runway protest J

Jet-setters they may be, but Queens Park Rangers' owners Bernie Ecclestone (pictured) and Flavio Briatore should now be joining the protests against a third runway at Heathrow, which would cause the club's Harlington training ground to be covered in Tarmac. The noisy, windswept venue is rented from Imperial College and was previously used by Chelsea, whose superstars would from time to time find themselves turfed out the dressing rooms on a Wednesday when the students had a game to play.

s.tongue@ independent .co.uk

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Latest in Sport
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

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

Day In a Page

Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific