Beckham changing teams isn't a big deal

Let's put this David Beckham situation in perspective. He isn't even one of the 20 best soccer players in the world, yet he's demanding a world record transfer fee.

The only reason why his leaving Manchester United for another team has worked its way into the mainstream media in recent weeks is because of his celebrity status. Unfortunately it has everything to do with his relationship to a former Spice Girl and nothing to do with his soccer ability.

In 263 games over nine seasons with Manchester United, Beckham has scored 58 goals, roughly one goal for every five games. In 59 games with the English National Team, he has scored 11 goals, roughly one goal for every five games. In eight World Cup matches, Beckham has scored two goals and has only led his team out of the first round in 2002, when England lost to Brazil in the quarterfinals.

Sure, Beckham can swivel a ball in such a way it seems to defy geometry. But he's only been able to do that in the midfield, not in an area of the field where it has consistently scored goals. That alone boggles my mind why another team is going pay Manchester United around $50 million just to have the rights to sign Beckham. Now, it isn't necessary to score a lot of goals to be a good soccer player. But you should score a lot of goals if you are to be paid like the best soccer player.

Spain's Real Madrid, now the front runner to win the Beckham sweepstakes, paid Italy's Inter Milan $35 million before last season to sign Brazil's Ronaldo, who is probably the best striker in the world.

Ronaldo's price tag last year has to be considered a value if Beckham costs a team $15 million more than him. In 232 games over nine seasons with several clubs, Ronaldo has scored 271 goals in 232 league games. He has won two World Cups with Brazil in 1994 and 2002 and led his country to a runner-up finish in 1998.

So why is Beckham a more expensive player than Ronaldo?


Now somebody tell me why -- and how Southwest Missouri State and South Carolina got into the College World Series? Oh, I know. In a cost cutting move, the NCAA set up a cheaper and more geographical logical Super Regional match ups between North Carolina-South Carolina and Ohio State-Southwest Missouri State.

The end result was two extremely unfair Super Regional games that had Texas and Florida State playing for one spot in the CWS and Arizona State and Cal-State Fullerton playing for one.

And because of it, South Carolina got whupped 8-0 by Stanford on Friday and Rice will most likely do the same today to Southwest Missouri State. Meanwhile, ASU and FSU, two teams who more than deserved to be in the CWS, are watching teams that could probably only beat them twice in 10 games.


The Arizona Cardinals traded running back Thomas Jones, the seventh overall pick in the 2000 draft, to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Friday. In return, Arizona got wide receiver Marquise Walker, who won't be drafted on Fantasy Football Draft Day in August. Tampa Bay gets another former Cardinal running back that will be playing for another Super Bowl next season. Michael Pittman, who rushed for more than 100 yards in Tampa Bay's win over the Raiders in Super Bowl 37, probably won't play football again. He's being charged with aggravated assault after trying to run over his wife, 2-year-old child and baby sitter with a Hummer. Ironically (well, maybe not when it involves the Cardinals), Pittman also played for Arizona prior to Tampa Bay. The Cardinals will also watch Jake Plummer lead the Denver Broncos into the playoffs next season.

Finally, there is a more inept NFL franchise than the Cincinnati Bengals.


Galena High catcher Steve LeRud should sign with the Pittsburgh Pirates, who drafted him in the third round with the 75th overall pick in this month's draft. He probably won't improve his draft status if he chooses to go to Santa Clara. Of the 74 players drafted in front of him, only 23 of them were college position players. And of those 23 players, only five were catchers, one of which was drafted in the first round.

The 69th overall pick in this year's draft received a $500,000 signing bonus, so LeRud should expect to get something around that figure. Still, his stock might be at all-time high right now and going to college might only give scouts a chance to find flaws the next three years. The Pirates are going to pay his college education anyway, so signing with them would be LeRud's best move.

Jeremy Evans is a Nevada Appeal sportswriter.


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