It started big, with a $32.5 million deal that shook the football world in 2007. It will end big too.
I've had an incredibly special time playing for the LA Galaxy, however, I wanted to experience one last challenge before the end of my playing career. I don't see this as the end of my relationship with the league as my ambition is to be part of the ownership structure in the future.
Beckham's announcement calls time on six seasons with the Galaxy, in which he was three times an MLS All-Star. He'll have a chance to add to his 2011 MLS Cup triumph in his farewell against Houston at Galaxy's Home Depot Center.
Few would doubt he's delivered on the club's record investment, as he's proved a hugely successful ambassador for the Major League Soccer. It seems slightly strange he signed a two-year deal in January, but sometimes a deal like that can serve both parties equally—Beckham to retain focus on the job at hand, Galaxy to cash in when the time comes.
In terms of what is next for Beckham, we'll get a better sense in the next few days. But expect him to be linked to clubs all over the world—Australia and China have already been mentioned—and expect most of it to be nonsense.
Here's some of the headline reaction to Beckham's decision on Twitter:
LA Galaxy announces David Beckham leaving team after MLS Cup final. Curious since team announced 2-year contract in January 2012.— Grant Wahl (@GrantWahl) November 20, 2012
if i may say this again THE RELEASE DOES NOT SAY DAVID BECKHAM IS LEAVING MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER— Jonathan Tannenwald (@thegoalkeeper) November 20, 2012
Beckham's time in LA had some rough patches, but when you talk the full 6-year term, MLS & LA's investments were paid back multiple times— Ives Galarcep (@SoccerByIves) November 20, 2012
RT @kaustin01 Since intro on 7/13/07, Beckham played in 98 of LA's 176 reg. seas games (56%). Started all 16 playoff matches to date.— Brian Straus (@BrianStraus) November 20, 2012
To say that the Galaxy's/MLS investment in Beckham was worth it would be an insane understatement. Guy is/was a game-changer for MLS— Avi Creditor (@AviCreditor) November 20, 2012
Mark my words: Beckham and Harry Redknapp at QPR. What could possibly go wrong?— John Brewin (@JohnBrewinESPN) November 20, 2012
A-League may be an option for David Beckham after all as he is looking for "one more challenge" bit.ly/SaJMQ3— news.com.au (@newscomauHQ) November 20, 2012