David Beckham To Tottenham: Why This Move Is Not Purely For Commercial Reasons

Frank TiganiCorrespondent IJanuary 8, 2011

MILAN, ITALY - FEBRUARY 16:  David Beckham of AC Milan takes the free kick which led to their first goal during the UEFA Champions League round of 16 first leg match between AC Milan and Manchester United at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on February 16, 2010 in Milan, Italy.  (Photo by Hamish Blair/Getty Images)
Hamish Blair/Getty Images

There is a real possibility that David Beckham, who turns 36 in May, will soon sign a two-month loan deal with Tottenham Hotspur, the club he spent five years at as a youth player. If he does move to the London club, it will be twenty years since he left for the Manchester United.

Yet, exactly how Harry Redknapp expects to benefit from a player so far into the twilight of his career is a question that many will ask. Admittedly, at such an age and after so many years away from the Premier League, it is hard to imagine Becks having any great impact in just two months.

Many will claim that it is a purely commercial venture. The presence of Beckham at White Hart Lane will attract many Beckham fans who will relish the opportunity to see him strut his stuff one final time at the highest level back in his native England. Indeed, football fans in general will be attracted to the spectacle; such is the phenomenon that the former England captain has become over the years.

The argument that this move by Spurs is purely commercial certainly has a kernel of truth about it. After all, Beckham, at times in his career, has seemed more of a financial asset than the football star that he was and still remains. His arrival at Real Madrid and the commercial benefits he brought with him from Manchester United effectively helped the Spanish giants overtake the Red Devils and become the biggest club in the world, at least in terms of revenue.

Through the course of his career Beckham has become a marketing phenomenon. His worldwide appeal was such that despite never holding the title of the world’s best player, though he was not far off on a couple of occasions, he has for a long time been the highest earning footballer.

Aside from all his extracurricular activities, Beckham still is an exceptional footballer. His crossing ability is largely unmatched today and he remains one of the best free kick takers in football. He certainly will be remembered as one of the greats of the game and one of the best that England ever produced.  

There is little doubt that Beckham’s time at Manchester United was his most successful. He won the Premier League six times, the FA Cup twice, the Intercontinental Cup and the Champions League in 1999, after that remarkable comeback victory against Bayern Munich in Barcelona.

At Real Madrid, in the age of Galacticos v.1, Beckham along with the rest of his Real stars struggled to claim silverware. Nonetheless, in his final season with Los Blancos, Beckham, who earlier in the season had been frozen out of the first team by then-manager Fabio Capello, forced his way back into the first team to become a key figure in Real’s late run to claim the Spanish league title.

Capello, one of the most hard-nosed managers in football today, even admitted after the season that his decision to drop Beckham was wrong. The Italian went further to praise the England captain for his professionalism and commitment.

For a player that has been so successful, both on and off the field, Beckham has remained a grounded character. His professionalism and commitment have ensured his status as a standout professional to this day.

Certainly, if Spurs are successful in signing Beckham, the club will stand to benefit financially more than anything else. Nonetheless, Beckham remains a world-class footballer and an inspirational character. That along with his professionalism will help boost his would-be teammates at White Hart Lane.  His mere presence in the squad may serve to help Tottenham in their bid for a top-four finish, though he will leave only after two months. The extraordinary tale of David Beckham may yet have one final fairytale ending to it.