What's has been the impact of David Beckham one year after his arrival in MLS? Crowds are still decent, as evidenced by the 40,000-plus crowd at Giants Stadium Saturday for the Red Bulls-Galaxy game. The media circus has disappeared, however.
"MLS and the Galaxy cannot expect to thrive based on the snapshot that has been David Beckham this past year," David Carter, executive director of the USC Sports Business Institute, says. "But he has driven a lot of interest. The key is, do the people distinguish between the buzz and the hype and the quality of play, or do they, like most Angelenos, just sort of want to be attending a hip thing?"
Beckham himself says he "has moved the needle" slightly. "But I also said when I first moved here that it's not going to take a year or two," he added. "It's going to take five or 10 years to make this league grow to a much higher level. The problem is, people want results straight away."