Beckham paying off

There has been a lot of talk on Beckham over the site since his massive move to LA Galaxy. Talk has surrounded Beckham making a huge impact on the sport of soccer and lifting its profile through the US, but this may come sooner than expected. [Beckham sells for Galaxy]

The club’s owner, Tim Leiweke has stated:

“His signing created such a huge interest that we should be able to make good on our investment before he even arrives in California in July”

Beckham isn’t the only former European player to head to the MLS this year. Abel Xavier, a former Portugese international has also signed for LA Galaxy, making them a very strong side.

Robbie Fowler, the Liverpool great is also looking at playing the MLS next season.

This exposure should benefit every stakeholder in the league.

– Fans see better quality games.

– Crowds should rise making their clubs richer.

– Higher TV audience, enabling greater ad revenue and a higher price for the TV rights.

– More money in the league should lead to a larger salary cap, therefore distributing more money to players which in turn leads to…
more money for Agents!

Come on, when was too much money in sport ever a bad thing?

– Chris Lesley

6 replies on “Beckham paying off”

Just to play devil’s advocate, would an increase in the salary cap raise the salaries, significantly, of the average MLS player? Or would it just give teams more cap room to overpay “stars”?

The salary cap is not going to change in the near future, but the “star” clause will allow teams to pay two players (or more if they trade for the star exception) as much as they want. This allows them to be more competitive on the international market and attract better players. The hope is that this will lead to an increase in quality of play and star power and will bring in more sponsors and fans. The question is will soccer ever break into the mainstream. My opinion is yes, eventually, as soccer is an extremely popular youth sport and as these youth age soccer will be more popular among those who count, the money spenders.

soccer has been the biggest sport among youths since i was a kid (i’m 26 now), but it doesn’t carry over once kids get to the high school level. the scholarships available in football, basketball, and baseball dwarf those available to kids in soccer. also the money that the average big league football, basketball, or baseball player earns is SIGNIFICANTLY more than the average MLS player.

that’s why soccer has struggled and will continue to struggle in the us. yes it is great kids are playing it, but the best athletes, who are likely the best soccer players, end up in one of the big 3 sports.

Just to elaborate on my point, there are roughly 200 D1 soccer programs who are allowed 9 scholarships per year, so that is 1,800 D1 soccer scholarships per year.

In football there are 119 D1A programs that are allowed 85 scholarships and 122 D1AA programs that are allowed 65 scholarships for a total of over 18,000! In D1 hoops there are 336 teams allowed 13 scholarships or a total of 4,368. Baseball is close to 3,444 D1 scholarships a year.

So the breakdown:
Football – 18,000+
Basketball – 4,368
Baseball – 3,444
Soccer – 1,800

Baseball is the closest thing, but if you count the kids that jump straight from HS to the pros and then kids that go to Junior Colleges just to get drafted (who get scholarships) it isn’t even close.

I agree it isn’t at the point yet, but when they hear the earning potential from players such as Beckham, they may think again about taking up soccer. Also, alot of players are signed by clubs in Europe when they are teens, therefore bypassing college altogether.
The salary cap moved from 1.5 million to 1.65 million next season (not including a marquee player) in the Australian A-League, a change of 10%, this rise does not happen in any other Australian league.

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