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Mid-Day Musings: On Beckham, Copa Libertadores and the 2009 MLS Draft

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In case you didn't know, the Beckham Circus has arrived in the New York area, and while there isn't exactly the type of buzz that existed during his first visit to the area with the Galaxy, there's still some excitement in the air.

Okay, so maybe not THAT much excitement.

Perhaps it would be different if the New York Red Bulls, Beckham and the Galaxy's opponent on Thursday night, weren't a dead team walking, and if Beckham hadn't already come through three times in the past few years (once with England, twice with LA). There'll be some media hysteria, but in terms of local soccer people really getting worked up about his visit to the area? Not so much.

Does that mean there won't be thousands and thousands of non-soccer types and casual soccer fans making the trek to Giants Stadium on Thursday night? No, there'll still be a horde of fans who don't normally go to MLS games, but palpable energy felt around previous Beckham visits is lacking these days.

What's funny is that as much as Beckham generates his own buzz, the interest generated by the new book, "The Beckham Experiment" is probably more responsible for interest in this trip than anything else. Who doesn't want to see how Beckham and Landon Donovan play together? Who won't be intrigued by the first awkward celebration the two have after combining on a goal? Who isn't half-expecting them to get into a shouting match and start throwing jabs ala Kieron Dyer and Lee Bowyer?

The Beckham Circus isn't as much of a draw as it used to be, but this trip will still be worth watching.


In case you missed it, here is Part Two of Adam Spangler's interview with Grant Wahl about 'The Beckham Experiment'. The best interview out there with Wahl.

And for those wondering, I'm up to Chapter Six. Great read. I wish I could devote some time to finishing it off. Maybe I'll do that tonight. Once it's done, you'll get my complete review on it, which will be the 4,000th review on the book out there, but still.


Fellow Designated Player SF of The Offside Rules made it out to the Beckham press conference in Hoboken and has some interesting tidbits, including an awkward but priceless exchange between Beckham and Wahl.


The second leg of the Copa Libertadores final kicks off tonight with Cruzeiro and Estudiantes clashing in a classic Argentina vs. Brazil battle (8pm, Fox Sports Espanol). Even if you're not a big South American soccer fan (and shame on you for not being one), this is a match every soccer fan needs to see.

Why watch? Let's see, you have young sensation Kleber for Cruzeiro as well as Benfica-bound Ramires (playing his final match for the Brazilian club. Then you have Juan Veron and Catania-bound goalkeeper Mariano Andujar for Estudiantes.

Those are just some of the standouts in a game that can't be missed.


Because these kind of things are always interesting to me, I started thinking about what the 2009 MLS Draft might look like if teams could do the draft over. These Draft Do-overs are usually much better to do three or four years after the actual draft (like we did with the 2006 MLS Draft), but with all the talent in this draft, I figured it was worth a shot.

So here goes, the 2009 MLS Draft Do-Over:

  • 1. Seattle Sounders- Steve Zakuani

  • 2. Toronto FC- Stefan Frei

  • 3. Los Angeles Galaxy- Omar Gonzalez

  • 4. Toronto FC- Sam Cronin

  • 5. FC Dallas- Chris Pontius

  • 6. D.C. United- Rodney Wallace

  • 7. D.C. United- Darrius Barnes

  • 8. Kansas City- Matt Besler

  • 9. Chivas USA- Kevin Alston

  • 10. New England- Michael Lahoud

  • 11. New York- Jeremy Hall

  • 12. Real Salt Lake- Jean Alexandre

  • 13. Toronto FC- O'Brian White

  • 14. FC Dallas- A.J. Delagarza

  • 15. New England- Nick Zimmerman

Some thoughts: Yes, I gave RSL Jean Alexandre because let's face it, those teams that supposedly were ready to grab him in the first round are still out there, aren't they?

Seriously though, there are lot of picks that are the same as the original, which is a credit to the good job most teams did with their picks. I would find it interesting if LA would pass on either Sam Cronin or Stefan Frei now that they know what they know. Omar Gonzalez has been solid for them though, so I would see Bruce Arena making the same pick.

The biggest jump by any player? Darrius Barnes, who goes seventh overall here but went 40th overall in the original draft.

New England wouldn't be a fan of this draft do-over, not with both Kevin Alston and Barnes sure to be grabbed before they picked at No. 10. Chivas USA might still take Michael Lahoud though, so there's an outside chance the Revs could still land Alston.


What do you think of Beckham's latest trip to New York? Excited? Underwhelmed? Will you be watching the Copa Libertadores final? What do you think of our 2009 MLS Draft Do-over? Are you glad the draft can't be re-done, or do you wish your team could do something differently?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. I’m in Canada and don’t have access to fox sports en espanyol.

    Does anyone know where I can watch the libertadores final on the internet?

  2. @Angel… Lewis and Kovalenko were benched before the additions.

    GK: Ricketts

    LB: Dunivant

    CH: Berhalter

    CH: Gonzalez

    RB: De La Garza

    HM: Miglioranzi

    LM: Donovan

    CM: Birchall

    RM: Beckham

    ST: Buddle

    ST: Eskandarian


    GK: Saunders

    CH: Sannah

    LB/LM: Lewis

    RB/RM: Klein

    HM: Kovalenko

    CM/ST: Magee

    ST: Gordon

  3. Always been a fan of Wahl’s but after that exchange even bigger fan now. I could not beleive NBC had Beckham on the morning show today.

  4. This Beckham-Donovan spat is of some interest. Think about it, Beckham’s draw with the American public was dissipating. The book, the controversy and the MLS is back in media mainstream. A publicity stunt (a good one at that) or the genuine article. It has given me pause.

  5. I was glad when Beckham was coming over and understood the deal with AC Milan and didn’t blame him.. but I will say his handling of the Landon deal was weak.

    The way he keeps dropping his Man U and other Euro teams is patronizing at best.

    Its pretty obvious considering how it all played out that he was less than 100% committed to the Galaxy. Don’t try to tell us how Landon must be wrong just because he played hard for Man U or Real or Milan.

    There is no reason why Becks shouldnt have immediate impact now that he’s back. Let’s see him back it up.

  6. Well Galaxian I think the question is whether DB will manage to make the LAG implode.

    And obviously you will get little to no hate from RBNY fans. We know who the worst team in the league is.

  7. Damn. I almost forgot about the Libetadores tonight. Sweeeeeet. Vamos Veron! gonna be a crazxy match!

    Game tonight and RB tomorrow.

    Gee, I wonder which one i’m NOT gonna fall asleep to.

  8. All you haters can eat it. The Galaxy is actually good this year and becks will bounce back from critics like he has done all his career from man utd, real madrid, england and now LA galaxy. Lets go Galaxy!! And i predict an assist and goal from Becks.

  9. I’ll be going to the game. It’ll be an absolute sh*tshow to get there. Train home from the city to get my car, then drive to the stadium since public transportation to the stadium sucks. I’d like to think there will be a decent crowd on hand, and that the Red Bulls will show signs of life.

    Lastly, I hope the former Metro fan of the year (can’t remember his name)doesn’t get drunk and get thrown out of the game again for cursing at some lady and making her kids cry.

  10. My Galaxy Startin XI against Redbull NY.





    Wow I can’t wait to see how this lineup can play but I don’t know if Omar Gonzalez is ready but we have Sanneh. Other Sub to this line up are Sanneh, Eskandarian, Klein and Magee

  11. Ives, I’ve been watching Cronin all season and while he does have a few special moments i can’t say that i’d rate him over Pontius or Wallace.

    I know that’s a somewhat bias decision to make as Cronin has a less flashy role. But i think that his impact on the game is somewhat less compared to the other two.

  12. JGIB – game is on FSC. Surprised ESPN isn’t grabbing this one to glorify Beckham.

    I’ll watch – if only to see the awkwardness. Here’s to Landycakes ripping into Beckham for lack of defensive hustle.

  13. I hope Captain Landon Donovan has the balls to wave off Beckham when he lines up to try and take his first free kick. “No, Mr. Spice, I’ll get this one!”

  14. Sooo many reasons to skip the RBNY v. Galaxy game. Everything from the annoying public transportation commute, midweek game, RBNY being god-awful, indifference toward Beckham, hatred for Osorio, etc. It’s seriously a never ending list. TV is enough for me. I’m willing to bet the total attendance will be around 13k.

  15. Nice to see the former Wharton High product Zimmerman get some love, he’s definitely been one of the bright spots for RBNY this year. And boy could FC Dallas use some of Pontius’ attacking creativity, and De La Garza bombing down the wing.

  16. You know what drives me #$@*ing nuts? Even in the re-done draft the QUAKES STILL DON’T HAVE A PICK! Can we really re-do it and go back two years so that we still have all our draft picks?


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