Dallas Soccer DFW

Beckham makes splash in Dallas

Published 3/16/2008 7:34:59 AM by staff from dallas

A lone female voice rose above the sellout crowd of 20,500 on Saturday night at Pizza Hut Park. "Beckham, you are beautiful," the woman shrieked.

David Beckham was the star attraction and the reason for the crowd as he and the Los Angeles Galaxy played to a 0-0 draw in a preseason exhibition against FC Dallas. 

"It was a good game," Beckham said. "I think we played some good football. At times we played through the Dallas team quite easily and made a lot of chances. The problem is when you don't finish chances off, it's going to be a close game."

The English superstar missed the majority of the 2007 Major League Soccer season, including last year's SuperLiga match against FC Dallas.  Saturday's charity match was a makeup to area fans for the missed opportunity to see Beckham last year.  With his every touch of the ball including numerous corner kicks, he drew a slew of camera flashes, uncharacteristic for a normal FC Dallas match. Beckham returned to England this off-season after the first year of his five-year contract with MLS.

"People were always skeptical about me moving to the MLS while still a bit young [32]," he said. "But I've always said I saw it as this is a league and a country that is going somewhere with soccer."

Beckham played the full 90 minutes in a right midfield-winger role and the Galaxy caught offside three times in the first half on his passes LA enters the season with a new coach, former Dutch superstar Ruud Gullit, who installed a 4-5-1 set with Beckham and Landon Donovan on the flanks. It can be an aggressive attack, but the Galaxy central midfield proved a bit bland in terms of creativity or possession. The concerns were epitomized in the 60th minute when Beckham picked out Donovan perfectly with a flighted ball. Donovan sharply played the ball to Alan Gordon for a clear one-on-one against FC Dallas goalkeeper Dario Sala, but Gordon flubbed the chance with a poor touch.

Los Angeles outshot FC Dallas 14-11, but the home team did little to quell the concerns about its offense.  Key forward Kenny Cooper took four shots, but FC Dallas didn't manage to get any of its shots on goal.

"That's a little bit disappointing to create the opportunities and not have the composure to get the goal," FC Dallas coach Steve Morrow said. "We're still a couple of weeks out to the start of the season and we're working hard in practice on a couple of things, one of those being crossing and shooting."

Fortunately for FC Dallas, Sala appeared in form to provide six saves, including a stunner in the 86th minute as Beckham set Donovan free.  Beckham earned a yellow card in the 87th minute and a minor bit of shoving ensued as FC Dallas' Andre Rocha argued with him.

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