Doug McBride

Prediction: Beckham will disprove his critics, yet again in the MLS Cup final.
David Beckham and his L.A. Galaxy teammates are set to take on Real Salt Lake in the MLS Cup Final this Sunday, and there’s more than just another title at stake for Beckham and company. Beckham has already won league titles in Spain and England with Man United, and Real Madrid respectively, but winning the MLS cup with the Galaxy would successfully put to bed all the doubts about his large price tag, his age, and the many questions surrounding commitment that have loomed large this season for the Galaxy midfielder. Truth be told, it’s this fan’s viewpoint that the Galaxy’s success will depend more heavily on Landon Donovan and the much-improved Galaxy defense on Sunday, if L.A. is going to triumph against RSL. But Beckham has a key role to play, and it just so happens that he’s made a career out of disproving all his doubters. Let me offer you just a few examples: Beckham became the most hated man in England after his red-card against Argentina in the World Cup in 1998 led to England’s elimination from the tournament. But he fought back to become his country’s hero with an all time best performance and a fantastically taken free kick against Greece to secure England’s passage in the final game of qualification for the 2002 World Cup. He then struck a pressure cooker penalty kick to defeat Argentina during that World Cup, to come full circle by eliminating Argentina. These are just a few of the obvious, high profile moments, but there’s more. Beckham was also famously benched by Sir Alex Ferguson after a rumored spat with the legendary Manchester United boss, but made his comeback in a Champions League match against of all teams, Real Madrid’s Galacticos back in 2003. He came on in the 63rd minute and promptly scored a ridiculous free kick in the 71st minute, before he banged in a second goal in the 84th minute to win the game for he his team by a score line of 4-3. You also might remember that Beckham was famously benched by Fabio Capello while he was at Real Madrid, after announcing he would be joining the Galaxy the following season. Beckham’s professionalism in training, and Madrid’s desperation on the field led Capello to select Beckham again, and the Englishmen’s late season contributions were widely credited by the press and fans as being instrumental to Madrid’s title that season. So what am I trying to say here? I’m saying this guy has a long track record of disproving his critics with solid performances, and I’m betting he’s going to do it all over again with the Galaxy in this year’s title match. But then again, maybe I’m just crazy, maybe I’m wrong, or maybe you think I’m a little of both. Let us know what you think. Tell us whether you think the Galaxy will triumph, or fall at the last hurdle, against a strong Real Salt Lake side in the MLS Cup Final.