Thursday, September 6, 2007

SAF: Becks can't succeed...

Can David Beckham change the attitude of an entire country? Fergie doesn't think so and makes some valid points:
Manchester United boss Ferguson says his former superstar can’t hope to succeed where legends like Pele and Johan Cruyff have already failed.

“David Beckham himself can’t change the whole country,” was Ferguson’s blunt verdict on the injured England star’s £128m move to Los Angeles Galaxy.

Galaxy’s massive investment is geared at not only upping their ­fortunes but also giving US soccer a facelift.

Ferguson, who sold Beckham to Real Madrid four years ago, said: “In the late 1970s I went to America with Aberdeen and there were guys like Teofilo Cubillas and Peter Shilton there.

“Before that, there was Pele, Cruyff, Beckenbauer. It is difficult with David going there. I don’t know what kind of impact he can make.

“The size of the country makes it difficult. In Europe, and especially in Britain, you can travel easily.

“If you are in Boston and need to go to Los Angeles, it’s a six-hour flight.

“Supporters don’t travel so you are missing that rivalry between fans.

“So you have a problem. To make it substantial you could have to go regional but there’s not enough teams to have four strong leagues.”

Ferguson also feels the MLS is undermined by an exodus of young, homegrown talent.

He added: “What you have in the States is a lot of kids playing football but with nowhere to go.

“The best American players go to Europe very early, like Brad Friedel at Blackburn and Brian McBride and Clint Dempsey at Fulham.

“So that situation doesn’t help the American game.”

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