Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySoccer World DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America ClassifiedsGame Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
Balancing what beckons Beckham
by Ridge Mahoney, May 23rd, 2007 10AM

MOST READ
TAGS:  mls

MOST COMMENTED

Galaxy general manager Alexi Lalas, talking on his cell phone at the Denver airport waiting for a connecting flight to Los Angeles, is wary of loading too many exhibition matches onto his team's schedule.

Lalas was returning from Minneapolis, having concluded negotiations for his team to feed off the frenzy that will hit these shores in another month or so. Still, playing at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome Oct. 10 against an opponent to be named later makes sense, even if the game - and a match one week earlier in Vancouver - occurs during the critical final weeks of the MLS regular season.

That's what happens when you sign David Beckham. The world comes calling.

"We took on some financial responsibilities by signing a certain player," says Lalas, "and everyone at our club knows those responsibilities mean we have to generate revenue whenever we can. Believe me, we've had to turn down some attractive and lucrative proposals because we were concerned about our players and our organization doing too much.

"Because of our commitments in MLS and other competitions you'll see us do more of this in the postseason and preseason next year. Our players and coaches understand this, and David, too, knows that this is part of the gig."

In this case, the gig is a match promoted by the USL Minnesota Thunder and its ambitious director of soccer operations, Manny Lagos, who emerged from a long college and pro playing career as universally liked as a person can be. Lagos, a native of St. Paul, Minn., hopes to promote the Copa Minnesota as a regular international soccer event. For this first edition, Mexican club UNAM is among the possible foes for the Galaxy.

"As soon as we signed Beckham, Manny Lagos was on the phone, saying 'You need to come here,'" says Lalas. "He made it attractive for us, financially and competitively, and I'll say straight out, if it wasn't for Manny Lagos and his hard work, this game doesn't happen."

Lalas didn't reveal financial details but a source says the Galaxy is being guaranteed a fee of $500,000. Lagos wants to break the state soccer attendance record set in June, 1976, when a crowd of 46,164 came to see Pele and the Cosmos play the Minnesota Kicks at Metropolitan Stadium. The Metrodome can accommodate 64,000 for soccer. A 1984 Metrodome crowd of 52,000 attended a soccer game that also featured a Beach Boys concert, or vice versa.

"Copa Minnesota will be an amazing international soccer event that will boost local and regional interest in the sport," said Lagos in a press release. He played for the MetroStars, Columbus, Tampa Bay, Chicago and San Jose in MLS as well as in France and Spain after earning all-America honors at Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

"Two great teams are coming together with a lot of star power. This is a not-to-be-missed soccer event for fans and families, and of course, we are very excited to bring the biggest soccer star in the world, David Beckham, to the Twin Cities."



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Confidential
For once, USA starts off a year just as it's supposed to    
Defensive miscues. Sloppy touches. Blown assignments. Confusion. These negative facets of play have been part and ...
Jozy shows he's still the man up front    
U.S. soccer fans have a love-hate relationship with most of their big stars. For every fan ...
Lee Nguyen on how he parlayed longer offseason into national team success    
Revs attacker Lee Nguyen got his first U.S. start against Iceland last Sunday and turned in ...
Revs' Heaps relishes competition and preaches consistency    
Aside from the apparent departure of Jermaine Jones, not a lot has changed on the New ...
USA-Canada match underscores Olympic issues for Klinsmann    
A games against Canada Friday may be the last opportunity for USA coaches Jurgen Klinsmann and ...
Christian Pulisic, 'the American Jewel,' must be protected    
I can think of 10 reasons we should be excited about Christian Pulisic. Those are each ...
Paths of Miazga and Cropper cross with both at crucial points    
An FA Cup match this weekend between MK Dons and Chelsea is a tussle between a ...
Return of Movsisyan reconnects Real Salt Lake with its rise to success    
After five years in Europe, striker Yura Movsisyan has come back to Real Salt Lake on ...
Coaches-in-training ready to whip LA Galaxy locker room into shape    
With three MLS titles in five seasons with the LA Galaxy and a scoring rate that ...
For once, some healthy signs are coming out of Toronto    
A flurry of offseason moves has strengthened Toronto FC after it conceded as many goals as ...
>> Soccer America Confidential Archives