MLS Cup will be Beckham’s final game with the Galaxy

David Beckham has spent six seasons with the Los Angeles Galaxy, and now it looks like his sixth season will be his last.

The Galaxy announced on Monday that the 2012 MLS Cup Final will be his final match for the Galaxy.

“I’ve had an incredibly special time playing for the LA Galaxy, however, I wanted to experience one last challenge before the end of my playing career,” Beckham said. “I don’t see this as the end of my relationship with the league as my ambition is to be part of the ownership structure in the future.”

Beckham has helped lead the Galaxy to the MLS Cup Final in three of his six seasons with the club, and will look to guide the team to a second straight championship when they face the Houston Dynamo on Dec. 1st at Home Depot Center.

Nowhere in the Galaxy’s released announcement of Beckham’s departure did it say the 37-year-old midfielder was retiring though, so now the question becomes just where will be play next.

His time with the Galaxy started out slowly, with the team struggling during his early years, but since the arrival of Bruce Arena as head coach the Galaxy have enjoyed a dynasty-like run, with Beckham playing a key role during that run.

Beckham has also helped bring plenty of attention to MLS during his six years with the Galaxy, drawing international attention to the league and attracting mainstream attention to MLS.

“Seldom does an athlete redefine a sport and David not only took our franchise to another level but he took our sport to another level,” said Tim Leiweke, President and CEO ofAnschutz Entertainment Group. “It has been an honor and privilege to be a part of his world, and more importantly, to have him be a part of ours.”

What do you think of the news? Surprised to see him leaving the Galaxy? Where do you see him going next? England? Australia? Scotland? The New York Red Bulls?

Share your thoughts below.

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124 Responses to MLS Cup will be Beckham’s final game with the Galaxy

  1. Eugene says:

    Where he’s going is exactly what I came here to find out! So what’s the rumor, Australia?

    • JRP says:

      He said he is retiring from the sport. Did you miss that?

      • Rob218 says:

        At no point did he say he was retiring. The article said he was excited to be involved in ownership within the league in the future. Which has nothing to do with retiring.

      • Mark says:

        And exactly where does it say he is retiring from the sport? I see where it says that he wants “one last challenge”, which I take to mean he wants to play in a new league. Did you miss that?

      • Jason B says:

        Where does he say he’s retiring?

        He said “I’ve had an incredibly special time playing for the LA Galaxy, however, I wanted to experience one last challenge before the end of my playing career,”

        Which to me means that he’s going to close out his playing career somewhere else.

        • JRP says:

          “I wanted to experience one last challenge before the end of my playing career.” I read this as meaning the final game will be the final. Am I wrong?

          • JRP says:

            I guess it could be read that he is going somewhere else as well. Maybe I am the only one who read it that way. My bad.

          • Jack says:

            Sounds like the A-League is the final challenge…

            • AzTeXan says:

              Growing the Australian League will be hard. When you google “a league” it suggests “of their own.” They have ten teams in eight cities. Average attendance is 14,319 so far this season but was only 8,393 as recently as the 2010/11 season. If I was him I’d just join the Cosmos.

              • Josh D says:

                MLS wasn’t far from those stats when he came. Beckham will ensure they sell out each stadium and his 10 game stint there will raise the profile of the league. Basically, he’ll do what he did for MLS – just with less time.

    • jonf says:

      N E W Y O R K “COSMOS” yes, it is the NASL

  2. JRP says:

    Love him and hate him, but for the most part he is a pretty (pun) classy guy. When RSL won the cup against them he dressed and then waited outside RSL’s locker room to congratulate the team on the victory. Wish him luck.

  3. Dax says:

    Kaka in January anyone?

    Followed by Marcelo Saragosa traded from DC United to LA Galaxy I presume.

    • Hal says:

      lets see….7 million a year for Kaka or 7 million that goes towards youth development.

      • Elite Hunting says:

        That logic is flawed. Just because you don’t spend money on a specific player doesn’t mean that money goes somewhere else in the organization – most notably youth development. An investment in a high profile player ultimately benefits youth development by bringing more money back into the club through other avenues.

      • Mike R says:

        Umm 7 million for Kaka MLS doesn’t know how to develop young talent.

        • baropbop says:

          Why develop talent when you can just buy it? High profile players are essential to the league.

        • RK says:

          DC United disagrees.

        • soccerhorn says:

          Frankly so does LA. While they have the luxury of being able to afford three quality dp’s, don’t forget how many development projects are starters for the Galaxy, including 3/4 of their back line.

    • Josh D says:

      Lampard is my guess.

    • ed - houston says:

      there is NO WAY kaka joins MLS until after the world cup

  4. Clayton says:

    Job well done, Becks. Nobody has given him the credit he deserves for what he has done here. Good luck in MLS Cup – baller.

  5. THomas says:

    I did not expect this. I thought he would ride out in mls. Maybe he wants to head back to England for a year or two. Man united has had success with aging stars. That wouldn’t surprise me if he goes there in January.

    • Monty says:

      Oh please no.It was bad enough that Giggs still started on Saturday.

    • David JS says:

      Thomas- You bring up a really interesting idea that I hadn’t considered (re: United)… to be honest he might be able to crack their midfield rotation, crazy as that seems. Fletcher, Anderson, Carrick, Scholes, Cleverley, Becks- pick 2? His skill would certainly be sufficient for when the team wants to play long diagonals to Valencia/Young, longballs to Welbeck, or chip a ball over the top to van Persie or Rooney. Only question would be has he lost too much pace and athleticism to cope in a 2-man midfield even with say Carrick or Anderson covering for him. And, if he really is past it at that level, Fergie always has the option of just augmenting the coaching staff to include Becks in some capacity or him moving upstairs to a more figurehead position. It would be cool to see him try it…

  6. evan says:

    new york cosmos

    • Davy Crockett says:

      I could see him playing a season or two, then taking his ownership option on the Cosmos as they become the long-rumored 2nd NY franchise. It almost makes too much sense.

      • Bobb says:

        Beckham will not get his discount on a New York or LA team.
        I predict Miami,San Diego, or Las Vegas for Beckham’s MLS team, those are the “most Beckham-y” markets without teams.

        • David JS says:

          Pretty much everything in MLS is subject to change, so I wouldn’t be surprised if the clause in his original contract about owning a team in LA/NY somehow doesn’t make a different in the end. The league knows having his brand around a big market here is very valuable, and that his presence draws a lot of eyeballs from ‘casual’ US fans & media, even if it is as an owner.

      • Hal says:

        Cosmos don’t want in MLS.

        They would lose too much of control over their club and their branding.

      • Paul E says:

        Galaxy is up for sale. I wouldn’t be surprised if he pulls a Magic and gets part ownership.

        • soccerhorn says:

          unfortunately it’s not just the Galaxy that’s up for sale, it’s all of AEG. Price tag will be in the billions. Too rich even for Sir David I’m afraid. He’ll need a prince or two to throw in with him.

  7. whoop-whoop says:

    I’m not much for cloaking a team with one star player, let alone an entire league and was a bit of a skeptic when he was first signed, but the guy has undoubtedly given MLS a boost in credibility when they really needed it. Whatever you think of his commercially driven image…. he leaves it all on the field and still cares/plays with passion even at this point in his career when it would be all too easy to cruise. The man loves the game… that I can respect!!!! And…… I am still astounded/marvel at the quality of his set pieces and laser guided passes put on a boot from 50 yards.

    • Gary Page says:

      My sentiments exactly. There were a lot of skeptics, but he proved them wrong. I think he was worth it to the Galaxy and the league.

    • beachbum says:

      ^^^what these guys said

      the guy is a ballplayer and as tough-arse a competitor as I’ve seen. will miss him when he’s gone and wish him all the best.

      but one more game first baby!!!

    • meowmix says:

      I became more and more of a fan of his every season for exactly those reasons

    • chris_thebassplayer says:

      I watched him warm up before the playoff game at Buck Shaw. Every single cross field ball was inch perfect…unbelievable technique striking the ball…jaw dropping to see that level of skill up close. Needless to say, I won’t miss his free kicks.

  8. Cru says:

    Taylor Twellman’s take…headed to be a Red Bull

    link to twitter.com

  9. ben says:

    I’d put money on him going to Oz. There is reportedly an offer already on the table from one team and about 5 others showing interest. Love to see him on my Sky Blues with Del Piero but I think that’s a pipe dream (plus, SFC needs all the defensive help they can get and Becks doesn’t help at all there).

  10. Weaksauce says:

    Drop Keane, Donovan and Beckham

    Lampard, KAKA, Ronaldinho

  11. Beto says:

    Signs with the nasl cosmos, take that to the bank!

    Seriously, his time in mls was increadible. Ups and Downs but he earned his salary and some.

  12. Mike says:

    He’ll be a member of NYRB next season. Posh is already looking at houses and school in the metro area apparently.

  13. Joe+G says:

    I was so looking forward to watching the Beckham boys teasing us by claiming love for the US while accepting call-ups from the English U-xx’s.

  14. ben in el cajon says:

    I suspect he’ll go to China. Red Bulls or Australia are also good, depending on his family’s desires, but two years in China would be great education for his kids.

  15. soccerhorn says:

    When he showed up in LA, I was thoroughly prepared to hate this guy as a pompous, arrogant crybaby phoning it in and collecting an obscene paycheck. Then I watched him play for the past six years. Dude plays with fire and heart, not to mention the sweetest right foot anyone’s ever seen. Thanks David, I’m a fan.

    ps: but for the love of GOD don’t go to NYRB. THAT would be obscene.

  16. eboe says:

    Who are you guys fooling? Everyone knows he’s gonna be Owner/Player/Coach of the Crew – we dropped Cole Grossman to make room for Becks ;)

  17. Bobb says:

    “Nowhere in the Galaxy’s released announcement of Beckham’s departure did it say the 37-year-old midfielder was retiring though, so now the question becomes just where will be play next.”

    In order from most probable to least:
    1. Beckham owned Miami Strikers
    2. Beckham owned MLS team in San Diego, Las Vegas, etc.
    3. New York red Bulls
    4. China or Australia
    5. He really is retiring

    Playing for his own MLS team makes the most sense, though…

    • Jason B says:

      If MLS was adding a team in the next 2-3 years, you and I would know about it. So, he won’t be playing for some team in Miami, San Diego, or Las Vegas that doesn’t exist yet.

    • Number Ten says:

      Echoing Jason B…your comment makes no sense. There will not be a new team in MLS in 2013. If DB is in MLS it will be with an existing club, but I suspect he won’t be in the league at all.

  18. AMPhibian says:

    he is certainly not retiring. while i think it is the perfect year for him to move along wherever he wishes, i wish he would have held out on this announcement until after the season.

  19. just kidding says:

    He’s joining my +35 co-rec team.

  20. Sergio says:

    Inside word is that he will very likely be playing for NASL’s Atlanta Sillygorillas. Wynalda will be scouting him at MLS Cup.

  21. primoone says:

    All you are dreaming if you think Becks is going to play for another MLS team. The challenge he took on was to bring exposure, growth to MLS while winning cups (2 against Houston) with a Large Market team. Check and Check . What would motivate him to do it all over again in the same Country? Not happenning…China or Down Under.

  22. bottlcaps says:

    Paging Frank Lampard! Paging Frank Lampard!

    or Didier Drogba
    or
    KaKa

    Or many of the other stars who have all expressed interest in playing for the LA Galaxy

    Send your resume and salary requirements to:

    LA Galaxy
    Geriatrics Unit
    c/o Bruce Arenas
    HDC
    Carson Ca.90747

  23. Hoss Bonaventure says:

    I hear he’s becoming head coach of the North Korean Men’s national team…

  24. vasco says:

    Xmas comes early this year finally. don’t let the door hit you in the butt on the way out.

  25. Limey says:

    Can’t be an MLS team, China would be my guess, maybe PSG? Honestly I know nothing I thought he was going to stay at the Galaxy for one more year. Oh well onward and upward

  26. slowleftarm says:

    He’s been great for MLS and soccer in our country. Thanks Becks for everything. Not a Galaxy supporter but hoping he ends his career here with another MLS cup.

  27. Sven says:

    David will be joining me in Bangkok with BEC Tero Sasana Football Club.

  28. phil says:

    The weird thing was that it was only a guest stint being discussed for an A-league club, not a full time move. But its hard to see what challenge he would get playing in Australia. Such a small market that doesn’t offer anything really for Brand Beckham.

    Something tells me he wants to retire playing in England or Europe. It was pretty clear Beckham moved to MLS too early in his career, that why he kept going for loan deals, I think he misses the day to day life that soccer in England and Europe entails. As big as he was in the USA, he was still playing in a league that most Americans ignore.

    I think the challenge he wants is to prove to himself that he could cut it on the biggest stage still.

    • Helium-3 says:

      You really are short sighted when re:A-League’s market. They play in the Asian Champions League. Do you know how much revenue from merchandising they could get from markets in Japan and China?

      Even if it was a 1 year deal, the revenue from merchandising will more than pay for his salary.

      Plus, Australia (Sydney or NSW) is a great place to live, if he is used to the lifestyle in SoCal.

    • RK says:

      Australia is at the same point that MLS was when Beckham joined.

  29. Paul E says:

    Good Luck getting a reasonable price on tix for this match

  30. baropbop says:

    The worst thing that could happen is he goes to AUS or China. They are following the MLS model and really the main competition the MLS faces at this stage for general growth. Having him leave MLS for another growing league would be a big red flag for other players considering an MLS future.

    That being said I think he will be a Red Bull. It’s going to be a couple years before any new teams pop up and he isn’t going to wait. He will be in NY or Europe. There have been lots of signs that he’s heading to NY for a while now.

    • Bolt says:

      Yeah, kind of like when he signed for MLS, it was a big red flag for players considering La Liga. Just look at all the massive names that chose MLS since Beckham came here.

  31. Steve T. says:

    Twellman said he will be in NY, not playing for RBNY. Becks’ last challenge is raising the profile of the newly formed NY Cosmos, getting the new flushing stadium approved by charming its opposition, and then joining the ownership group and then living happily ever after. Book it.

    • Jason B says:

      I would but Vegas isn’t giving odds on it.

    • David JS says:

      this scenario would be splendid for MLS… I, for one, hope you are correct.

    • Hal says:

      NASL does not want to join MLS.

      They would have to give up too much control of their club. It goes against their business plan. They want to sign the players they want and not be told by the league who they can sign and who they can’t.

      I don’t know why so many people think the Cosmos are joining MLS.

      • Hal says:

        er i meant Cosmos not NASL

      • Old School says:

        “I don’t know why so many people think the Cosmos are joining MLS.”

        Cosmos need MLS as much as MLS need the Cosmos brand.

        Frankly, despite the Cosmos having name recognition, it’s largely irrelevant on a global scale if they’re playing a second division (without promotion/relegation) in an obscure league…even within this country.

        If you think they’ll a new stadium, incredible merchandise sales and marquee players are going to flock to the Cosmos in the NASL, you’re so far out of touch that trying to explain why people think Cosmos will eventually join MLS is largely pointless.

  32. el paso tx wants NASL says:

    Wowsers, becks is a smart bitch and I always thought he would join red bull not a as DP or play for cosmos and be part of the ownership but he won’t go for d2. I say he plays for manu or tottenham but red bull and cosmos are too good to let go. Anyways, what about psg? He has played in spain, england,usa, italy and maybe now france or germany or even red bull…..lol

  33. JM says:

    He’s going to buy either the New York Cosmos or a team in Florida, maybe Miami FC

  34. TexAg says:

    I thought the rumor was a NYC based team. Supposedly the wife was looking for good schools for the kids in the city a few months ago. Would definitely help his and her other TV-type goals.

  35. Joe Dirt says:

    My money is on PSG

  36. Ceez says:

    I think he’s staying here in the States.

    Even though I would like to see him close out his career with Man U, he did reject a bid from PSG in order to live the family life in the States and keep his kids in a stable environment. I suspect his last challenge is to see if he can finally bring a title to the Red Bulls. If these Posh/NY/schools rumors are true, then we could very well see him come to my Red Bulls. A part of me tells me I’m just dreaming but then again, there was that rejection of the PSG bid so as not to keep moving his family around the world. If he does move overseas, then his claim of not wanting to move his family yet again was just a bunch of BS.

    Am I wrong?

  37. Al17 says:

    Nothing but the HIGHEST RESPECT for him. I felt that way about him when he came to the league and feel the same for him now. Curious to see where he’s headed off to play and the money for his services is going to be MAD. Japan? China? Dubai? Qatar? Brasil? Australia?
    This is gonna be fun to watch. He definitely put MLS on the Global Map.

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  39. Spacemonkey says:

    Watching Becks drop those perfect crosses in front of Henry in the box would be a sight! Not buying it until it is really done though…