Monday, July 20, 2009

Booing Becks and Cheering Manny? A priority check in L.A.

Feeling little need to either reiterate my stance on steroids and PEDs in baseball (and other sports) or profess my often blinding passion for L.A. sports, I was troubled by the public display of certain fans at the LA Galaxy/AC Milan friendly on Sunday. What should have been a positive for the MLS and US Soccer, inviting an elite European team to the States, was tarnished by the homemade banners and chants of certain fans towards superstar David Beckham. Booing as the PA announcer read his name and every time he touched the ball, calling the English phenom a “fraud,” claiming to be there “despite 23” and even bidding him to “Repent” (no joke), fans were ruthless, even when Becks angled a vintage Beckham corner kick towards the net leading to an equalizing goal against his other team AC Milan, leading to a 2-2 draw. So out-of-hand were the LA hecklers that the generally even-mannered Beckham jumped a barricade to confront a few fans and even extended a rejected handshake to one particularly belligerent party. Rather than responding with a rude gesture as he did in the Euro 2000, Beckham took the higher road, shrugged his shoulders and said: "It's to be expected. Sometimes it goes beyond it. The majority of the fans have been great.''

Still, I introduce the Beckham story with a mention of PEDs because when beloved Dodgers slugger Manny Ramirez, who was banned for 50 games for violation of the MLB drug policy, returned to the line-up earlier this month, he did so to a lustily cheering crowd. However, when another L.A. sports superstar returns to the team after what amounts to prolonged business negotiations, he’s received as a traitor. As one who was pleased to have both players back, two major contributors and offensive catalysts to help both squads who are in a playoffs push, I suggest that the boo-boys check their priorities. While neither suggesting that we condemn Manny nor that we simply ignore the angst caused by Beckham’s contract negotiations, I do say that we should cheer for L.A., the MLS, international friendlies, and a hard-fought draw against a Serie A powerhouse—and that we recognize Beckham as an integral part of recent success.

4 comments:

SM Sprenger said...

you're trying to reason with a mob. an impossibility by definition.

Corry Cropper said...

Becks is European, Manny is one of the club...

Coach Steve said...

"Becks" is a bore who never wanted to be in Los Angeles. Ramirez feels more at home in L.A. than anywhere outside of Miami. Beckham’s deal with the Galaxy was about money and publicity (in both directions). While Manny is looking to get rich while he can, he also wants to have fun and be loved. Galaxy fans have come to dislike the English soccer player because he isn’t really interested in giving everything he has to those fans. Dodger fans have embraced the slugger because they appreciate how much he can help their club win.

Singnals3 said...

Hello,
He
did so to a lustily cheering crowd


Cheering contract