Reuters Soccer Blog

World Soccer views and news

Beckham’s value is his values

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SOCCER-MLS/Harry Redknapp does not need a right-sided midfield player and, with the depth of talent regularly available on his bench, he hardly needs to bolster his squad with a three-month loan signing.

Yet he, and several other Premier League managers, are trying to secure the services of 35-year-old David Beckham.

Many observers are scratching their heads and wondering just what is the enduring appeal of a player clearly several years past his peak.

They point to the unavoidable media frenzy that will come as part of any loan deal arranged with LA Galaxy, if the American club agree to let their number one asset go again after he suffered a serious injury on his last sojourn, to AC Milan last year.

Unlike Del Piero et al, at least Beckham may get a farewell game

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Fabio Capello’s impromptu announcement that David Beckham was too old to play for England has divided opinion across the blogosphere.

Some have said it was typical of Capello’s hard-nosed, no-nonsense style. Why should he have informed the 35-year-old? Why should he have made the announcement in a more official way? As coach he has the right to do as he wants and Beckham should have had the know-how to quit the international scene long ago.

10 things to watch out for in the new MLS season

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SOCCER/The 15th Major League Soccer season kicks off on Thursday as fans thankfully turn their thoughts from collective-bargaining agreements and guaranteed contracts, to action on the field, safe in the knowledge that the only strikers making the news this week will be those who score goals.

Others will make their judgments on the deal that avoided a strike — but what is certain is that the new five-year contract and modest salary structure ensures not only that MLS will start on Thursday (Seattle Sounders host the Philadelphia Union) but also that it will enter its 20th year in much the same status as it began its first – a league featuring a surprising number of good players, being paid a surprisingly low amount of money.

Sun, money, good football … who wouldn’t fancy Spain?

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SOCCER-GERMANY/Franck Ribery will likely choose Spain if he decides to leave Bayern Munich, we learned from a Sport Bild interview this morning, and I guess few people reading another of today’s big football stories, this time in France Football, would blame him.

While the Frenchman highlights the nice weather as the motivating factor behind his “tendency” towards Spain, others in his position might be swayed by the following list of the game’s top earning footballers:

from Left field:

Who will rise to the occasion and become a worthy replacement for Beckham?

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SOCCER-ITALY/BECKHAMFabio Capello has plenty of options for the right midfield slot, even if David Beckham's snapped Achilles rules him out of the World Cup.

Between Shaun Wright-Phillips, Theo Walcott, Aaron Lennon (if fit) and James Milner there is a wealth of talent at the Italian's disposal.

Beckham poised to miss World Cup – your views

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David Beckham’s dreams of playing in a fourth World Cup look to be in tatters after the England midfielder ruptured his Achilles tendon in AC Milan’s 1-0 win over Chievo on Sunday.

Club doctors have said he is all but ruled out of June’s tournament in South Africa and will fly to Finland for an operation on Monday.

Could Beckham really play right back?

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RTR28E2S[1]BECKSDavid Beckham has returned for his second loan spell at AC Milan where he has an outside chance of playing right back.

Massimo Oddo is injured while left back Marek Jankulovski has been hit by fitness and form problems so Gianluca Zambrotta has been operating on the left of the defence rather than the right.

Champions League draw – your views

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SPORT SOCCERDavid Beckham can look forward to en emotional evening at Old Trafford, after AC Milan were drawn to play Manchester United in the second round of the Champions League.

Beckham had said in the days leading up to the draw that he would love a chance to return to his old stamping ground and the England man has his wish in the pick of the matches (although Inter Milan v Chelsea isn’t bad either, for all you Mourinho watchers).

Beckham does his bit for England’s World Cup bid

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David Beckham is in South Africa to help England try to get their bid to host the 2018 World Cup back on track.

Beckham played a similar ambassadorial role for London’s successful bid to stage the 2012 Olympics and as perhaps the most famous player in the world he is clearly an important asset for the FA.

Big decisions loom for growing MLS

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Major League Soccer shows plenty of signs of good health and progress but beneath the surface the North American league has some critical decisions to make over its future direction.

After a week of largely upbeat build-up and nationwide publicity for a sport that so often struggles to get space, the league’s title deciding game, MLS Cup, was played out in front of over 46,000 fans here in Seattle – the city that is staking a strong claim to be the de facto home of U.S soccer.

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