Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Bench It Like Beckham


America, if you actually were to begin with, you can stop cheering now -- or at the very least looking on with a modicum of fascination.

Sure you've seen the good looks, the chiseled physique, the designer wardrobe, the rumors of a conversion to Scientology and his almost-lifelike wife, Stepford Spice. And you've no doubt heard about his legendary prowess on the pitch (that's a "soccer field" for you neophytes).

But that was just the excellent work of the starfucking media and a PR/hype machine that's second to none.

Now however, less than a week after his extravagant coming out party -- the one that might eventually rival the mass flagellation sure to greet the returning Christ-child -- the man behind the sequined curtain has made his first appearance.

The real David Beckham has finally arrived.

For the record, I had really hoped that he wouldn't; I had really hoped that this time would be different.

I had really hoped that this time, Beckham wouldn't be such a, well, pussy.

Yesterday, the coach of Becks's adopted team, the L.A. Galaxy, announced that his shiny new star midfielder was complaining of a sore ankle and therefore might not make his scheduled debut this coming Saturday against London powerhouse Chelsea (who, by the way, is guaranteed to kick the Galaxy's collective ass all over the field with or without Beckham in the lineup).

The game is sold out. It'll be carried live on ESPN. It's the latest, and possible biggest "big chance" for soccer in America -- and Becks may be sitting it out.

Understand, I take nothing away from Beckham's substantial talents: He's far and away the best place kicker in the game -- having an almost supernatural control over the ball -- and on the field he's much more of a team player than anyone would expect from such a high-profile, brand-name star (although I still contend that he wouldn't be the star he is today were it not for Ryan Giggs playing the Pippen to his Jordan all those years at Man United). But it's tough to forget -- and avoid drawing comparisons to present events -- the apparent ease with which he pulled himself out of a crucial match in last year's World Cup.

I'm talking about England vs. Portugal.

Team Captain Beckham complained of an upset stomach and wound up sitting on the sidelines while England went down in flames -- with incorrigible thug Wayne Rooney brutally stomping on fellow Premier Leaguer Ricardo Carvalho and squaring off with his own EPL teammate Christiano Ronaldo, and the Brits eventually losing 3-1 in a heartbreaking penalty kick shootout. Beckham was said to be near tears following the loss, but it was tough to feel sorry for him (the rest of the team was a different story) simply because it seemed almost a given that it should've taken nothing less than a sucking chest wound to keep him out of a game in which the stakes were so high.

And now, once again -- even after an exceptional climax to his career with Réal Madrid -- he's making it clear that he may be ready to opt out of a pivotal match. He cut his first practice with the Galaxy shamefully short yesterday, which seems suspect when you consider that the aforementioned final game with La Liga was almost a month ago to the day.

And that Beckham didn't even arrive in the United States until last Thursday -- which happened to be twelve days into the official start of his contract.

It's pretty much understood that the Galaxy isn't paying for Becks's ability to play as much as for his ability to fill stadium seats; L.A. in general wants "Beckham Inc." more than "Beckham PFA." Still, Beckhamania already may not be enough to bring soccer into the mainstream into the United States -- God knows everything else has failed miserably -- but it surely won't be if the man with the magic feet doesn't put them on the pitch when it counts most.

Like now.

24 comments:

litelysalted said...

Stepford Spice?! Hardly, my friend. Breaking news -- Posh just went on record saying that she'd spit in Eddie Murphy's food and CHOP OFF HIS DICK!

I think Posh Spice is kinda my new hero.

VOTAR said...

Soccor's "big chance in America" was about 30 years ago. For the average American, soccor is the sport of Eurofag snobs and illegal immigrants.

A certain person of my acquaintance text messages me the soccor score whenever Peru is playing. And I snort and grumble about her using up valuable space on my cellphone SIM card. Because, well, I'm an American. Fuck yeah!

And soccor players ARE pussies. I say that knowing that the average soccor player could probably kick my ass, but what I mean is that every time I've seen those guys play, and someone bumps into them, OH THE DRAMA, trying to fool the referees into believing that their internal organs are all about to rupture onto the grass, and that rude player from the other team who hurt them should be given the time out he deserves, and WAH WAH WAH.

I suggest they put on a helmet and pads, and line up in a three point stance two yards across from Warren Sapp. Either way, I don't give a damn what David Beckham thinks he is entitled to!




Wow I figured out a way to use that twice in one week.

Leigh said...

dude, everyone in america still hates soccer. if anything this pretty boy whine-o gives them even more reason to.

i still love Stepford Spice's (great name, btdubs) hair something fierce though.

Paul said...

The Chelsea/Galaxy matchup might have a slight silver lining. Maybe they will watch Drogba, Ballack, Essien, et al and become a little bit more intrigued. I know that is who I will be watching intently and hoping they aren't pulled early. Then again there will probably be more press coverage in the states about the Steelers opening up their pre-season camp on Monday.

Alex said...

The hype surrounding David Beckham's arrival makes me wonder who sets the agenda for a story to be "big". Certainly I was as shocked as anyone that Beckham would go to L.A. He can still play and would have/should have commanded a big payday for everyone involved if he had been sold off to another team in Europe. But I never imagined that this story would blow up in quite this way. Should SportsCenter cover this? Absolutely. Should network news agencies? Now you're pushing it.

Pele's arrival in the 1970's was a huge deal because Pele was THE player. He scored goals, won championships at all levels and was regarded by many as the greatest player ever. In any sport. Beck's wasn't even the best player on Real Madrid. So it begs the question: why is the hype machine going at full force for a guy who may not even be able to play in his first game?

Fungi said...

is hell freezing over?

when did you get into sports?

Boo said...

I think we (read: football fans) all know what drama queens footballers can be, but to not even get on the field before you start betchin? Unbelievable. I think that alien he's married to has finally destroyed what little manhood he had left. So 'Merica is where he comes to commit career suicide. He should have gone straight to South Florida and cut through the bullshite.

RottweilerTOM said...

Watching soccer from this athlete's [granted I'm 41] perspective is like listening to a "new" tune by douchebag Robin Thicke.

However, watching Beckham is no different then me going to a White Party in Palm Springs - a dime a dozen. Next.

Chez said...

Ms. Salted --

The bitch is just doing that because A) she has to show some GIRL POWER! 'cause she's got a tour to promote with the four other idiots just like her (well, maybe two and a half; Mel C's solo record was surprisingly good and that Geri Haliwell song Look at Me is fucking catchier than Hepititis), and B) Tom Cruise told her that the special "fluid" found in Eddie's penis is the only thing that will ward off the advancing armies of Xenu.

Votar --

Alright, you're prohibited from making any more references to A Few Good Men, as you've now managed TWO in less than a week. And for Christ's sake enough about your orally-gifted (read: willing) Peruvian girlfriend. I fucking saw Apocalypto; I know what's eventually coming for you.

As a soccer fan though, you should be thanking your lucky stars she's not from Brazil, otherwise she'd lead a sudden, loud and colorful samba-line out of your closet and around your apartment every time that fucking swarthy retard Ronaldinho flashed his "joyous, child-like" smile full of bad dental work.

You remember those Buttman movies? Well he doesn't even have the tits to make up for that face.

Doesn't play well with others said...

Okay, I really have to ask Votar...Soccor? What is soccor? Granted I'm not a fan (or even a spectator of the sport, for that matter) but I don't recall ever seeing a sport called "soccor" on ESPN. Ooh, ooh, wait...is that what the Eurofag snobs and illegal immigrants call it?

Chez said...

He's thinking of a combination of succor which is what his Peruvian girlfriend gives him when she's pulled the throw pillow off the couch and onto the floor (if you get my drift), and futbol which is what that FUCKING RETARD RONALDINHO PLAYS.

: )

Tu sabes yo te quiero my friend.

Andy M said...

My thoughts from a Brit perspective. Oh my god, ignore the Beckham circus, please. Because if you guys do, the British media may finally cease focusing on him. However, you do beckham a diservice; in the last world cup he damaged his achilies tendon and had to leave the field, granted he had been sick, but the main problem was the achilies tendon, which is a serious injury. Also, while we are talking about mistakes, Rooney stamped on Ricardo Carvhalio of Chelsea and later became embroiled on Ronaldo his club mate. Other than that, I agree, Beckham is an annoying moany wuss ass! Anyway, Zinedene Zidane was always a far better player...

Chez said...

You're absolutely correct about Ronaldo -- my mistake. I was going by my memory of the match and should've accounted for the number of drinks I had by that point.

Chez said...

And you're also right about Zidane -- head butt or no head butt.

Although the media would've huffed in collective confusion, I would've been far more impressed if Thierry Henry (God) were to have come to the states.

But bless him for staying with Arsenal.

VOTAR said...

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Laser Rocket Arm said...

In America soccer is still the sport of uncoordinated small children whose moms drive minivans and take turns bringing the orange slices and Capri Suns. If Pele couldn't popularize it Beckham has zero shot.

And every time I see Victoria Beckham I flash back to when I was bribed (not nearly heavily enough) into taking my nieces to see the Spice Girls at Madison Square Garden back in 1998. I have seen and heard hell, and it is twenty thousand little girls shrieking at the top of their lungs as five overpainted women in miniskirts lip-sync to awful canned Euro-pop while dancing badly. I'll be under my bed in the fetal position now, thanks.

slouchmonkey said...

Votar for Prez!

Chez said...

Did you say "Votar Perez?"

How'd you know his last name?

Paul said...

I think Zidane should come over and play in the MLS...if for nothing else to make Bill O'Reilly's head explode when he would cry about the French taking over MLS.

mrmook said...

No Shit Fungi-

Not only Sports but, fuckin' Hell, SOCCER(futbol, whatever they call it.)Chez!

You've succeeded in shocking me completely. Soccer? Shit I live way outside the U. S. of A. and sports choices are limited but I can see that you actually, wilingly watch?

Enjoy?

Hell man, join the club.

But hey, I'm willing to cut Becks some slack on that World Cup finale because I believe he was legitimately injured and would've only hurt the team had he soldiered on and when Rooney got the Red (fuckin' bastard ref) it just didn't seem to be in the cards for the Brits. Better luck next time.

Yea I watch and have to agree- Most Soccer players are profoundly pussyish and prone to fits of girlish whining at the drop of a hat but I wouldn't want to tangle with Rooney, Zidane or(for that matter) Matterazzi in a dark alley.

Lastly- Hey I like Becks but he'd go play on the moon if the Mrs. told him that's where her cameras were. WHIPPED!

Harris said...

"with incorrigible thug Wayne Rooney brutally stomping on fellow Premier Leaguer Ricardo Carvalho and squaring off with his own EPL teammate Christiano Ronaldo, and the Brits eventually losing 3-1 in a heartbreaking penalty kick shootout"

What are you talking about? Is that even English?

kc said...

I read their tabloid press like it's important.
Well, I should say I look at their pictures in the tabloids like they're important.

namron said...

I am reminded of my favorite line from any sports reporter. When told that the USA had been grouped with Germany, Iran and Yugoslavia in the 1998 World Cup draw, the author posed "What? The Viet Cong were busy that weekend?"

Emily Blake said...

A history teacher uses my room during my planning period. Monday he asked his class if they knew what "B Day" was that had just happened over the weekend. Nobody knew. So I threw up my hand and shouted "Bastille Day!" with enthusiasm.

The teacher looked a little dumb when he had to admit that he'd meant the day that David Beckham arrived, not the celebration of an entire country's independence from tyrany.