BECKS LIGHT GALAXY STAR'S IMPACT ON SOCCER IN L.A., AMERICA HASN'T BEEN WHAT MANY EXPECTED.Byline: SCOTT WOLF Scott Richard Wolf (born June 4, 1968) is an American actor.
Born in Boston, Massachusetts to Steven Wolf and Susan Enowitch, Wolf was raised in West Orange, New Jersey. He graduated in 1986 from West Orange High School.
There are near-capacity crowds at most Galaxy games and plenty of shrieking girls every time David Beckham Editing of this page by unregistered or newly registered users is currently disabled due to vandalism. touches the ball, even if they don't understand what he is doing with it.
But away from the protective bubble of the Home Depot The Home Depot (NYSE: HD) is an American retailer of home improvement and construction products and services.
Headquartered in Vinings, just outside Atlanta in unincorporated Cobb County, Georgia, Home Depot employs more than 355,000 people and operates 2,164 big-box Center, just how many people in Southern California Southern California, also colloquially known as SoCal, is the southern portion of the U.S. state of California. Centered on the cities of Los Angeles and San Diego, Southern California is home to nearly 24 million people and is the nation's second most populated region, , or for that matter the rest of the nation, are really interested in Beckham or Major League Soccer?
A year after the world's best-known athlete arrived in Los Angeles Los Angeles (lôs ăn`jələs, lŏs, ăn`jəlēz'), city (1990 pop. 3,485,398), seat of Los Angeles co., S Calif.; inc. 1850. , he appears swallowed up by America's indifference to soccer. And please do not blame the always-maligned L.A. sports fan.
There were 21,000 fewer fans in New York New York, state, United States
New York, Middle Atlantic state of the United States. It is bordered by Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and the Atlantic Ocean (E), New Jersey and Pennsylvania (S), Lakes Erie and Ontario and the Canadian province of to watch Beckham play last weekend against the RedBulls than a year ago. Last month's visit to soccer-crazed Washington, D.C., drew about 10,000 fewer fans than the previous year despite the fact the 2007 game was played in a rainstorm.
Not that Beckham noticed when asked about his first year in L.A.
"The attendance we've had has been great," he said. "It's been a success. On the soccer side, it's moved forward. We've gotten the interest in the league that we've wanted to, which has brought success."
It's nice the Galaxy leads the MLS See multilevel security. in attendance with an announced figure of more than 25,000 per game. However, the whole point of bringing Beckham to the United States was supposed to be a little grander than selling out a stadium in Carson that is one-third the size of the Rose Bowl, wasn't it?
This was the opportunity to capture the casual fan, who does not follow soccer or recognize exotic names like Cristiano Ronaldo, Didier Drogba or Kaka ka·ka
A brownish-green New Zealand parrot (Nestor meridionalis).
[Maori kk . By that measure, the experiment seems a bit frayed around the edges.
There are different theories for why Beckham has failed to wrest wrest
tr.v. wrest·ed, wrest·ing, wrests
1. To obtain by or as if by pulling with violent twisting movements: wrested the book out of his hands; wrested the islands from the settlers. L.A. from his friend, Kobe Bryant, or at least occupy a nearby pedestal.
Steven Cohen cohen
(Hebrew: “priest”) Jewish priest descended from Zadok (a descendant of Aaron), priest at the First Temple of Jerusalem. The biblical priesthood was hereditary and male. , an England native who hosts the World Soccer Daily radio show and lives in Los Angeles, blames the Galaxy for overhyping a then-injured Beckham's arrival last summer.
"I'm angry with them about this," Cohen said. "If you bring over someone you know is injured and make hoopla hoop·la
a. Boisterous, jovial commotion or excitement.
b. Extravagant publicity: The new sedan was introduced to the public with much hoopla.
2. about it and try to get the non-MLS fan and all you've got is Beckham injured, you just lay an egg. They deserve failing because they set themselves up to fail.
"It was a smash-and-grab. They wanted the money and season-ticket sales and didn't take into consideration he was injured. It was fraudulent and disingenuous to sell Beckham (ticket) packages when he didn't play."
Cohen believes it's too late to win over non-soccer fans who were burned by last summer's underwhelming un·der·whelm
tr.v. un·der·whelmed, un·der·whelm·ing, un·der·whelms
To fail to excite, stimulate, or impress: debut.
"Go and ask the average American sports fan about giving MLS a chance this year and they say the MLS overpromised and underdelivered," he said. "You can't do that in American culture."
The other problem lies with the array of handlers surrounding Beckham. They seem intent on promoting him more like a pop star than an athlete. Their idea of community service is an appearance on the Ellen DeGeneres show.
It's in this area I feel most comfortable saying Beckham's been shortchanged by his own people. He is made available to soccer writers only sparingly, but in my experiences, he's naturally polite and courteous, making it impossible not to like the guy. There is no hint of the monster ego so common to superstars in other sports, and he is so pleasant it's hard to believe he is one of the planet's most famous people.
If his overprotective o·ver·pro·tect
tr.v. o·ver·pro·tect·ed, o·ver·pro·tect·ing, o·ver·pro·tects
To protect too much; coddle: overprotected their children. management team only exposed this side to the average fans, Beckham could have a huge impact outside of hard-core soccer fans or those who go to an MLS game once out of curiosity.
There are some positives. The Galaxy is near the top of the Western Conference standings, but also failed to beat a team with a winning record in the first half of the season. The team also leads the MLS in goals scored and games are exciting, if not always high quality.
It might be unfair to expect Beckham to transform a nation's sporting habits, but the expectations here are no greater than in England or Spain. And probably less than if he played in Japan.
It might sound hard to believe, but the optimistic Beckham said he does not miss playing in the English Premiership or Spanish La Liga.
"I did it for 15 years at the highest level for two of the biggest clubs in the world (Manchester United, Real Madrid), and I wanted to move to America and I wanted to try and make a difference and make an impact and have a new challenge, and I've done exactly that," he said.
Maybe his good friend Tom Cruise believes that, but there are a lot more skeptics out there remaining to be convinced.
(1 -- color) The Galaxy's David Beckham says joining MLS has been a positive experience. "We've gotten the interest in the league that we've wanted to," he says.
Victor Decolongon/Getty Images
(2 -- color) no caption (David Beckham)
(3) Female fans in New York show their support for Becks.
Mike Stobe/Getty Images