Early Doors has spent a decade honing its bitter line in
cynicism, but there is one man who remains capable of reducing Ed to a smitten
teenager. Forget the fallout from the Merseyside derby, forget Pele's
multi-billion-pound comeback at Manchester City, forget Barack Obama's foreign
policy, Monday is all about the footballing institution that is David Beckham.
Becks started yet again for Milan against Bologna, putting
in a man-of-the-match performance and scoring a rollicking fourth goal in a thumping
4-1 win for Carlo Ancelotti's superstars XI
- who had Dida, Ronaldinho, Filippo Inzaghi and Andriy Shevchenko forming
four-fifths of possibly the best five-a-side team ever assembled on a
It was Beckham's fourth consecutive start in a Milan jersey and the Rossoneri have
taken 10 points from 12 with the one-man global industry in their line-up. But what
does it all mean? It means everything of course, and here's why.
Ed was among those who predicted a peripheral role at Milan for a player diluted by the gentle pace
of life in the MLS. Beckham was clearly long past his whirling-dervish best and
his fallibility would only be magnified in a midfield consisting of Kaka, Andrea
Pirlo and Ronaldinho.
At first sight, the only reasonable explanation for Becks landing in Milan was a desire to prolong his stuttering England career into the business-end of the 2010
World Cup qualifying campaign and maybe, just maybe, book himself a seat on the
plane to South Africa.
From a Milan
perspective his arrival looked very much like a publicity exercise designed to detract
from their Champions League sabbatical, up their TV rights money and sell
millions of replica shirts.
But Planet Beckham has not remained at the centre of the footballing universe
by harnessing his desire to be a fading star in the galaxy (he is of course the
only star in the LA Galaxy). Becks clearly saw something ED and countless bitter
football hacks didn't when he signed for Milan
- he saw the opportunity to reinvent himself for the umpteenth time, and this time
without the pressure of expectancy.
Based on his early form Becks may well choose to stay at Milan
and Milan would
be happy to have him. If that happens ED will be gushing like a crazed McFly
fan at a meet-and-greet, because no matter how we try it's just impossible not
to want good things for David Beckham.
And more good things are coming his way. With Joe Cole ruled out for the
season and David Bentley struggling to set the Premier League alight for
Tottenham, Beckham stands a very good chance of starting for England when their World Cup qualifying campaign
resumes against Ukraine
on April 1.
If he is given the jersey by Fabio Capello who would bet against Becks keeping
it all the way to South Africa - especially if he is holding down a regular
place in arguably the most talented midfield on the planet at Milan.
Whoever writes Beckham's scripts is clearly a genius. Just when you
thought it was over, back he comes with another chapter. Beckham V: Reborn will
be hitting your cinemas in the autumn of 2010.
- - -
Quote of the day: "They [Everton] were coming for a draw and we were trying to win. (Everton's
tactics were) not used at Valencia,
maybe at Extremedura." Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez continues his one-man charm offensive with an attack
on David Moyes and his team following their 1-1 draw in the FA Cup.
Coming Up: Contrary to popular belief, just because Scotland's Andy Murray has been dumped out does not mean the Australian Open has finished. Follow all the action HERE.