Wednesday, July 25, 2007

The Beckhams...

So the absolute last thing Tony Blair in office as Prime Minister was to somehow get the Beckhams to move to America? And we're thinking of invading Pakistan? I haven't seen Victoria Beckham's TV show, but I have seen a commercial for it in which she explains the word "major" in a way that's supposed to be interesting. Kind of the way NASCAR advertises races by showing crashes.

Right then and there I decided I had to make a list of obnoxious celebrities. Just started. So far I've got Victoria Beckham in the lead (she used to be one of the Spice Girls - they sang a song about wanting something...that's it, no joke). In second place, but primed to move up, I have that rich, beautiful young star who got arrested recently. No, not that one. The one with the addiction. Not that one either. The one who thinks she can sing...Anyway, if you've got suggestions for rounding out the top ten, I'd love to hear. Just don't put me on it...

The thing of it is - I can't see how David Beckham, even were he to somehow lose his wife, could be worth a quarter of a billion dollars. I mean, it's a sport that nobody in America watches. And I'm guessing his best years are behind him. Sure he'll be great in America. Not sure that's saying much. Don't know enough about soccer. But no one will tune in just to see him play. He won't pack stadiums. He'll sell T-shirts, true. But how much other merchandising can his team get out of him? Maybe a sneaker? I mean a pair of sneakers of course - selling them one at a time wouldn't work. Beckham key chains?

Now this is not a rant against paying entertainers a lot of money. As finaicial investments, a lot of them are worth it. Tom Cruise is worth his $25 million paycheck, so is A-Rod. They earn the money back for whoever writes their check. I just don't see how David Beckham is going to do that. Make me hip people. bring me up to speed. Did soccer catch on while I took my mid-morning nap?


Blogger John R said...

The largest participation sport on your side of the Pond, I know that much. Which is why everyone here's been careful to say that this isn't like the job Pele and the others were doing back in the days of the NASL - acting as a big-time crowd draw in the hope that it'd kick off the league (which, once the novelty had worn off, bombed and went bust). The MLS is well-run financially and pretty solid as leagues go.

Beckham will probably be a bit of a draw and a bit of a money-spinner, but more than that, the arrival of someone of his ability - and he could still easily play top flight football in Europe - in the MLS sends a signal to both your domestic players, who've tended to quit to play over here where the money is better and the standard of competition is much higher, and to Europe that the MLS is becoming a league to be taken seriously. Which is good for its future. (Apart from anything else, it makes it more likely to earn TV money from us furriners who want to watch it.)

July 27, 2007 6:09 PM  
Blogger Steven said...

Well, about the largest participation sport - that probably holds up to the age of about 12, but I'd be surprised if it goes on into the college ages.

Had a student from Jamaica a year or two ago who played for the college - found the league to be no competition, pretty much scored at will - broke the school's career scoring record before his first year was over. Got a full scholarship to a swanky university based on that.

I think the Beckham deal could do what you say (about retaining good players etc) IF the league goes on to get a half dozen top flight players from Europe through the rest of this year. If this is a one off, it's useless - in fact, it may well tell US players the opposite - "Forget it boys, go to Europe. The big bucks are in Beckham's pocket..."

As for Pele, he was in his forties when he came to the USA, I think. No way Beckham is on his last legs, but the last half of his contract is going to be a drag I think.

I see you said nothing about how we Yanks got Victoria as part of the deal...

July 28, 2007 11:55 AM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home