David Beckham will leave Real Madrid and join Major League Soccer side LA Galaxy at the end of the season.
The 31-year-old former England captain will sign a five-year deal, reportedly worth £128m.
Not bad, eh? No longer wanted by England, no longer able to command a place in a top Spanish or English team, but still able to sign the most lucrative deal in football history and pick up $1 million a week. Possibly more, because apparently they’re also giving him a stake in the club. And his wife gets to hang about Hollywood looking for bit parts in second-rate movies.
I guess Americans are (briefly) now going to be hearing a lot of nonsense about the most famous sports player (everywhere else) in the world, so here’s the truth about him:
1) He’s no Pele. He was never a great footballer: he’s very good player with a unique speciality. Nonetheless he’ll stand out a mile in MLS.
2) His one-man effort against Greece, culminating in the 92nd minute free kick, to get England to the 2002 World Cup remains the single greatest individual performance by a footballer I have ever seen. Including Maradona for Argentina. But that was the peak of his career.
3) He won’t just be there to pick up the paycheck like those hasbeen stars in the 70s – he’ll be surprisingly aggressive on the pitch.
4) He’s a lovely man and is precisely as articulate as George W Bush.
5) LA Galaxy are about to sell a hell of a lot of merchandise in Japan.