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MLS confirms Beckham/Milan loan talks


Major League Soccer commisioner Don Garber has confirmed that MLS is in talks with AC Milan about a potential short-term loan move for LA Galaxy star David Beckham, a move that would allow Beckham to spend a large part of the MLS offseason playing with the Italian giants.

"Discussions have taken place between AC Milan and the Los Angeles Galaxy regarding the possibility of a short-term loan agreement that would allow David Beckham to play for AC Milan during the MLS off season,” Garber said.

"Those discussions are ongoing. David remains an LA Galaxy player and will be here for the start of the 2009 MLS season."

Whether the Galaxy is in favor of such a move is another story.

Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena sounded less than enthused about a potential Milan loan for Beckham when interviewed by the Los Angeles Times.

"I would think (given) the position the Galaxy is in, and we’re rebuilding our team and trying to have a successful year, it would seem very odd to me if we were loaning out our top players at the start of the season," Arena told the LA Times. "It would seem pretty odd to me to operate that way."

What do you think of a potential Beckham loan deal? Like the idea? Hate it? Think it’s the first step to Beckham leaving MLS for good?

Things are starting to get VERY interesting in Galaxy land. What do you think of the Beckham-Milan situation? Share your thoughts below.


  1. So much butthurt for a has been!

    If you guys didn’t see this coming, start to be more street wise. MLS is like those Middle Eastern leagues. Beckham and “stars” see it as a retirement league.

    For an analogy, look at US basketball players going to Europe. If one can’t hack it in the NBA, one goes to Europe. Very similar with MLS .

  2. Well, do we forget the role that Beckham played to allow Real Madrid their dramatic come from behind title his last year there? Or that same coach still wanting Beckham on his England side?

    He does not have to be the best player in the world to be worth something, and his contribution to the MLS is incalculable.

    Granted, a successful Galaxy would make it a much better story. But he has done a lot to pump life into this league. Is he the only answer?? Heck no! HECK no. But don’t throw the Beckham out with the bathwater.

    One of the biggest roadblocks to overcome is a negative mindblock. Bringing Beckham here made the impossible, possible. We still have to build wisely and build on that, but his coming was an amazing feat. I am not keen to see him go, but for the right price . . . maybe. The best thing would be for him to do well with AC, come back uninjured, and for the Galaxy to field a playoff team (of course, to win the Cup too, but that may not happen for a while. Depends in part on the salary cap issue, and replacing Donovan), and for the league to still enjoy the draw DB brings, rake in cash, and for teams like Dynamo and the Revs to keep being consistent winners. Can you imagine those teams if they found the right DP and still kept their good teams intact? That is what a DP divorced from the cap would do.

    What no one is addressing: WHAT does this economy in the crapper do to expansion . . . or the MLS as it is now, even.

  3. Rightfully deserved, Sir Alex Ferguson does earn his share of criticism from all quarters of international football. But one on hot topic he assuredly hit it square, with all the naked clarity and precision of a penalty kick: that one David Beckham had become nothing more than a sideshow capable of rendering a serious football endeavor meaningless, that he had become more tied to image than substance, and that if a team’s enduring health were on a razor’s edge of failing you should bet your bottom dollar that wins meant dollar signs on his side of the blade.

    In its infancy this new reality landed Him at Real Madrid because in SAF’s clear estimation David Beckham went from footballing star to a star who occasionally played football. Even Fabio Capello saw this from the touch line of the legendary Bernabeu – Real Madrid’s hallowed ground – and for that Beckham had begun to fail, then forced to earn his way back onto the starting XI. A humiliating process which Beckham was left forced to navigate, simply because it threatened his enterprise’s brand name and marketing points to advertisers.

    And here we are once again with the LA Galaxy, Capello still demanding footballing performance at the risk of those same enterprises and the rest of the footballing world be damned. We shouldn’t be surprised that Beckham wants out; we’ve seen this side of Golden Balls before. But we should be ashamed that we let him dupe us yet one more time, having come to America to leave the world’s most suspicious soccer fans hanging at the end.

    For that, he’s worse than a fraud. He’s Little Britain, indeed.

  4. As some have posted, forget this talk of a loan. Straight out sell him. Declare the Beckham era over and done with. Go back to working on the real issues that the league has ignored (salary cap, roster rules, improving academies, etc..).

    Of course, my desire to see Becks sold assumes he has huge value to a big club other than his potential to sell merchandise and draw a huge crowd of papparazzi. MLS won’t sell him for a pittance, would they?

    As a player, he still brings something to the table but I don’t see him as capable of being a week in-week out starter for a CL level team. AC Milan might be a really good fit right now because their midfield is still unsettled with Pirlo still out with injury.

    Becks has done all he can do in MLS. This is not a league for global superstars. not yet anyway. The best thing that can happen for the league is that he goes on loan, plays very well, Milan suffers a couple of key injuries, making him even more helpful to the side and they make a fat offer to MLS for his full transfer.

  5. Piss off David Beckham

    F-off AEG

    MLS thanks for embarassing soccer in America

    Don’t kid yourself…he is gone. Thanks for turning our game into a mockery

  6. I have a hard time believing Arena can’t have a clue about the transfer, both in terms that it might happen and ESPECIALLY what the transfer window really is. The guy has been in soccer far to long to REALLY be ignorant. C’mon

  7. So, I just read the LA Times interview and I love this last tidbit:

    “As for the Galaxy, the Beckham circus could fold its tents and then the club could go back to being what it once was — competitive in MLS.”

  8. It’s working well for Milan already (from SI):

    “Beckham-mania has hit AC Milan after the club’s ticket line, switchboard and Web site went down on Thursday morning following the news of David Beckham’s January arrival.”

  9. Ives,

    You need to shed some light on the transfer window question to see if a 2 month loan deal is possible.

    1) Serie A has an ope window in Jan.

    2) MLS has an open window till 15 April.

    The way I see it Becks can go on lean starting in Jan. Of course any player can leave a league anytime as long as their personal contract allows. Since MLS window opens in Mach and closes on 15 April Becks can come into MLS any time during that window. FIFA transfer windows apply, no Serie A since he would not be moving from Milan to another Serie A team.

  10. shirteesdotnet: “The team looks like world class players now.”







    thanks for that

  11. It sounds like a “read between the lines” in the contract for Beckham. He has sold enough shirts now it is time to take Beckham Brand to Italy. Adidas wins and MLS is the loser. by the way he is no ones michael jordan or jump man.

  12. “No publicity is bad publicity.”

    Well, except that Superstar David Beckham can’t carry his LA Galaxy team into the playoffs for the second straight year.

    Beckham is going to Milan to save his image. He’s taken a huge hit by moving to LA and not succeeding. Sure, he’s sold shirts, but that’s where his success in the States ends.

    It just looks really bad to see Beckham’s team to have three coaches in two years, plus the Leagues’ American superstar and leading goalscorer, but no make the post season or even compete for success.

  13. I think this is a good thing, but only if Beckham comes in and plays at a high level for Milan. It should raise the awareness of MLS even more. No publicity is bad publicity.

  14. We should sell him to AC Milan. The Galaxy need to start from scratch. Beckham is a complementary player. He’s not someone to build a team around.

  15. Good idea for whom?

    Beckham? Hell yeah, if he wants to play in the World Cup in 2010 he needs to play in some games that mean something. The MLS regular season is one of the most meaningless competitions in the world considering the playoff structure. If I were Beckham play the rest of the season with Milan, come back and take it slow in the summer and get ready for the end of season 2009 playoff push.

    The Galaxy? What are you going to do? It sucks but you have little choice. Telling Beckham no would alienate superstars from coming over in the future.

    The lesson in all this is that MLS needs to align to the international calendar, go to a single table and make the regular season worth something by getting rid of the playoffs or something similar. IMHO, time to start thinking about a MLS Second Division and promotion/relegation or the regular season will never be that important.

  16. If I were Beckham, I’d run as fast as I could. This league is destroying him, obviously not financially, but soccer-wise. The experiment worked and now it’s time to go back to reality. Beckham still has a lot of soccer life left in him.

  17. “People forget he trained with Arsenal last year and didn’t even come close to getting a sniff of the field.”

    People also forget that he wasn’t on loan at Arsenal, he was just training with them, which means he can’t play with them because he was under contract to a different team.

    For the people who say Beckham wouldn’t see the field: Are you kidding? Do you really think Beckham couldn’t compete with the likes of Ambrosini and Emerson for time?

  18. IF he’s going for two months and then coming back to LA for the preseason and IF Milan will repay the Galaxy and MLS for all the insurance they’ll have to take out for lost revenue if Beckham gets hurt, then fine, I’ve got no problem with the idea.

    Of course, a two-month loan deal for a guy who’s unlikely to start more than a handful of games in that time doesn’t make a lick of sense to me. Something fishy is almost surely going on.

    I picked a stupid club to support.

  19. David Beckhams role for the Galaxy… Bring large profits to LAG and AEG. DONE. Give the LA Galaxy a makeover/rebranding. DONE. Thank you.

    Thats his biggest asset to the team. Giving a world class rebranding. The team looks like world class players now. Next, get the players winning again.

    I wonder what would happen if Kaka made a move to the KC Wiz? Can anyone say “rebranding” or “relocation”?

    I hear now Celtic wants a team in Boston. Whats next, Majic Zurawski to Chicago and rebranding them “Legia Chicago”??

  20. yeah… has this been done before… i wish the MLS could bring in players on loan as well… England could send young players here instead of a team in the League Championship dropping a player all the way down to Conference National or Belgian League

  21. If I were the Galaxy, I would make sure there was a iron-clad clause in there about the possiblity of Beckham getting hurt, and getting some insurance for the loan.

  22. its obvious that beckham runs his own ship and is not beholden to the team. I can see why my team is having so much problems, when one player basically can do whatever and is garaunteed a spot in hte lineup whether they miss practice or not, then you can;t think things are good in the locker room. Maybe becks is a primadona ala Barry Bonds. who knows.

  23. Seems like a win-win. If he can step in and make some plays for Milan, it will elevate MLS in the minds of some Europeans, players and fans alike. No, he won’t jump to a permanent spot in the first XI, but he is definitely capable of contributing. I think he should come back for next season, but after that the novelty may be wearing off, and the Galaxy can aim to have Ronaldinho or Henry (both a better fit for the team) replace him.

  24. LA = Hollywood and celebrity marketing machine

    Milan = fashion industry

    More mileage for the Victoria David global brand

  25. Clearly at this point Beckham is more concerned with getting his caps for England then anything to do with the galaxy. Good for him. The Galaxy is a mess.

    People forget he trained with Arsenal last year and didn’t even come close to getting a sniff of the field. Though AC Milan suits his style of play far better.

  26. How is this in any way positive for MLS? I’ve heard people say it will help market the game? To who? Milanese? Are they going to buy a Galaxy shirt or start watching games on tv (if they could even find one)? I’ve heard people say become will stay fit. He’s an aging player, if anything he should be looking to learn how to treat his body better as it’s physical limits decrease. He should be giving it the proper rest and allowing the Galaxy to be involved in his off-season training. He knew this was a summer league when he signed here, why should MLS care if he can’t make a pathetic chase for the England caps record?

  27. The loan is a stupid idea. MLS should just sell him for his residual value. They got him on a free transfer and the amount they get from the sale would be pure profit.

    It might be a net gain for MLS because his shirt sale/promotion value is diminishing every day he stays in LA. I’m guessing that the proceeds from the sale might be greater than the NPV of future Beckham related cash flows. Plus MLS doesn’t have to look like a joke by constantly putting its competition (actual soccer games) second to the whims of this celebrity.

  28. Imagine you had a Ferrari 430, and you “loaned” it out for free for 4 months. Then you get it back not knowing how the borrower drove it, and under what conditions. I think at a minimum Milan would pay $1 million+ for the loan or 1/4 of his salary, etc… else

    the car would endure wear and tear with you absorbing the maintenance costs (injuries in this case) later on.

  29. I think the fact that the league can loan him out against the will of the team is one of the many reasons I have not yet (and doubt I ever will) become a real MLS fan.

    The soccer is getting better, there is no doubt. But the league is still run like an amateur league, and so it’s hard to treat it as anything but.

    Please, MLS fans – not intended to incite, and not trying to change the subject. It merely answers the question – this is what I think.

  30. How do the international transfer windows affect international loans?

    This seems to be a pretty big loophole in the system. It seems that enough leagues around the world don’t follow the Sept-May Euro schedule and that we could see a lot more of this in coming years.

  31. Couple of q’s on this. Does AC Milan pay the Galaxy a fee for the loan? Does Milan also pay Beckham or does he just make the salary the Galaxy pays him?

  32. A lot of people seem to be assuming Beckham is just going to step right in to Milan’s first XI.

    Maybe that could happen. But is it really likely? I think he’ll play a handful of competitive matches at most, while maintaining his fitness for England. If what I think will happen does happen, he’ll be the fittest Galaxy player at the start of next season.

    The only way this turns out bad for L.A. is if he does in fact become an important first team player or starter for Milan. But any Galaxy fan who is worried about that right now must think this is David Beckham from 1999, not the 33 year old version from today.

    Relax and see how it plays out. As long as he doesn’t become an automatic choice this will work out well for everyone.

  33. This is insanity. I love Becks as much as the next, but he’s done all the good he’s going to do. Now he’s just the center ring at the circus.

  34. Arena being kept out of the loop is the biggest subplot to the loan saga. The Gals remain a circus.

    Arena: “My understanding is that now it would have to be at the next transfer window. I could be wrong about that. I have not looked into that, because I was just informed about this today.”


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