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When the MLS folks announced two months ago that British glamour boy David Beckham was coming to the States, they wished they could have brought him over right away and begun to take advantage of the marketing bonanza. Why? Because things like this could happen before the actual arrival.

This is the danger of banking so much of your mainstream marketing on one player -- a player who happens to be competing in serious matches in Europe for the next few months.

All of which brings up these questions: If Beckham suffers a major injury before his first MLS game, do all those new Galaxy season ticket holders have the right to ask for a refund? What is the reaction in, say, Washington if Beckham pulls a calf muscle two days before his only visit to RFK? I know, I know, injuries and player absences are part of the game and happen all the time, but this is a very unique and delicate situation. Just thinking out loud...

By Steve Goff  |  March 4, 2007; 10:27 PM ET
Categories:  MLS  
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Well to put it mildly this sucks, but it's not as if somthing like this wasn't in clear view the entire time. Personally I think MLS has already been burned by this style of Marketing (Adu) and I think the writing has been on the wall for a while now, that this is just too risky a way to Market. The guy is 32, let's face it he (most likely) will not play every game he is available for this season, MLS will have to deal with it, if refunds are the answer then so be it, but I still think it's a shoddy way to market an entire league. We'll see how it pans out, but I sure won't be holding my breath on seeing him in the starting lineup on August 9th.

Posted by: Chris | March 4, 2007 10:59 PM | Report abuse

It's fine to market individual players... you just need a lot of them. The NBA markets players, but has plenty so if D Wade gets injured, the league doesn't crumble.

That's why we can't pin our hopes on one player, but that's not the case. The league will survive and be fine if Beckham doesn't work out -- it will just be better if he does.

Posted by: RB | March 4, 2007 11:12 PM | Report abuse

I would suspect there's some sort of verbiage protecting AEG and MLS from the salary hit/promotion bonuses if Beckham were to be injured before he came to MLS.

Subconsciously, I think the new Galaxy season ticket buyers were essentially betting on Beckham futures...that is, putting money on the line for an entertainment return, assuming he won't be injured. Unfortunately, injuries are part of the game and typically an injury won't keep most of us from buying our tickets. Beckham, though, changes that equation.

I'm sure the Galaxy has no written plan to refund those fans that have recently signed up, although if Beckham is out for the season, I suspect they'll reimburse them somehow.

Posted by: Beaker | March 4, 2007 11:39 PM | Report abuse

Please reimburse us by signing Ronaldo.

Posted by: Paul | March 5, 2007 2:23 AM | Report abuse

With or without Beckham the DCU vs. LA games are always huge and always bring in good crowds.

I would actually pay double to not see Beckham play and not have to deal with the thousands of screaming 13 year old girls who are going to invade RFK for this match.

Posted by: Southeasterner | March 5, 2007 8:08 AM | Report abuse

1. Tough for Beckham b/c I think he's always had a lot of heart in his game and I'd have loved to have seen McLaren eat some humble pie and call him up for the NT.

2. Any word on the rumor that DC United is getting set to announce a signing?

3. Go GMU! I hope the Patriots give you a good game to watch Steve so at least your "working vacation" will have had some entertainment value.

Posted by: Joe | March 5, 2007 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Speaking of Mason, Steve, why did the Post (paper version - $1.50) not indicate that the Mason v. ODU game would be on CN8?

I was sitting on the couch resigned to refreshing my browser to get score updates until, by chance, I stumbled upon CN8 and caught the last 15 minutes or so.

Posted by: DE | March 5, 2007 8:48 AM | Report abuse

Everyone is overeacting as usual. Reports say that Beckham will be out for only six weeks. He will be at full health by the time he is set to join the Galaxy.

Posted by: DC Fan | March 5, 2007 8:51 AM | Report abuse

This is the Galaxy's 12th season. If the season ticket holders haven't asked for a refund by now........

Posted by: Kim | March 5, 2007 9:22 AM | Report abuse

Watch Becks go through rehab on a special bonus episode of Posh's reality show.

Posted by: I-270 Exit 1 | March 5, 2007 9:36 AM | Report abuse

Worse case scenario, casual fans in D.C. will get to see Emilio. He's easily worth the price of admission.

Posted by: ohboyohboy | March 5, 2007 9:59 AM | Report abuse

So, Esteban, any word on whether DCU is actually going to announce another signing today? And, um, any hint as to who that signing might be?

Posted by: EdTheRed | March 5, 2007 10:15 AM | Report abuse

Greetings from Richmond, where the GMU Patriots have extended my stay much longer than anticipated.

To answer a few questions:

Complaints about TV listings and such can always be made to the sports editors at

I'm guessing DCU will formally the signings of Casal, Kpene and Crowe soon. Fearrington and Welton Silva are in camp as well, but no decisions yet.

Still monitoring the club's pursuit of additional foreign assistance.

Posted by: Goff | March 5, 2007 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Tough luck for Beckham, but let's wait and see how bad it is. Who knows, maybe he can rehab it and come to MLS nice and fresh after a couple months off.

Posted by: Grotus | March 5, 2007 12:46 PM | Report abuse

Alright, Goff, point blank, do you know know of any POSSIBLE bigger than average name signings for DC? I don't mean another Yinka Casal, but someone who could start right away?

You don't have to name this person, but Yes or No, are there things in the works right now (I'm aware that in the works does not mean guaranteed)?

Posted by: DCAustinite | March 5, 2007 4:20 PM | Report abuse

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