Los Angeles Galaxy vs. Portland Timbers: Rating David Beckham's Performance

Jo-Ryan SalazarSenior Analyst IApril 15, 2012

CARSON, CA - APRIL 14:  David Beckham #23 of the Los Angeles Galaxy waves before the game against the Portland Timbers at The Home Depot Center on April 14, 2012 in Carson, California.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

The Los Angeles Galaxy's David Beckham had a solid outing against the Portland Timbers on Saturday at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif.

Well, let's be honest here, folks, it was the Portland Timbers after all. They aren't Real Salt Lake, and sure as heck aren't Sporting Kansas City. (By the way, aren't they still unbeaten?) But any time you get back on the winning trail and you are a part of a team's success, it's a great feeling that adds fresh wind to your sails.

The set pieces from Beckham weren't exactly the best free kicks I have seen from him, although there was one chance in the second half that nearly found David Junior Lopes, who is my man of the match for making a splash in his debut.

However, the real reason why I gave Beckham a high rating is that he did what is paid millions of dollars in sponsorships and ticket sales and merchandise sales and all other types of Galaxy-related sales to do, and that is...to score with authority.

And this goal, which didn't change the outcome of the match, is completely on Portland and John Spencer's tactical decision-making. There's no one in a green shirt within 15 yards of Beckham.

He is essentially on an island. All alone.

I said this before on the "6 Things We Learned" piece for this match, but I am going to reiterate this to you readers once again: When Beckham has an embarrassment of space in front of him, it's pretty much game over if you are the netminder.

In this case: embattled Timbers goalkeeper Troy Perkins. Beckham's first touch may not have been there, but when he has space for a placement shot, Perkins can do his best Victor Valdes impersonation, but he is not going to get to that ball in the top right corner.

It is going in. The hammer, laid down. Signed, sealed, delivered. Game, set and match.

And Beckham is paid the dough to elicit the reaction that comes afterwards.

The fans of the Angel City Brigade throwing themselves down before him. The screaming throngs of the fans after the match clamoring for his shirt. And the collective sighs of relief from Galaxy supporters who have been literally fed up with Los Angeles not doing the work and dropping points left and right.

The only question now for Beckham is this: Can he stay healthy and make it a habit to be on the pitch for a full 90 and stoppage? This is going to be crucial to the Galaxy's fortunes.

Los Angeles can only go up from here, and Beckham will see to it that it is done.

Rating: 8/10