Beckham's appearance has Edmonton fans abuzz -- win, lose or draw
Sun News Services
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
EDMONTON -- David Beckham gave the crowd a treat, but he couldn't deliver a victory for the Los Angeles Galaxy.
The Vancouver Whitecaps posted a 2-1 victory over Beckham and the Galaxy in a friendly on Tuesday night.
The match was played in front of 37,104 fans at Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton, with most coming to catch a glimpse of Beckham in action. He set up the lone Galaxy goal late in the first half, but the Whitecaps controlled play for much of the contest.
Beckham helped the Galaxy tie the game, 1-1, in the 43rd minute.
He fired a long cross into the top of the box for Alan Gordon, who beat charging Whitecaps goalkeeper Srdjan Djekanovic to the ball and headed it into the open goal.
Whitecaps forwards Nicholas Adderly and Eduardo Sebrango both tallied for Vancouver.
In the fourth minute, the Whitecaps took an early lead with a goal from Adderly, who beat Galaxy goalkeeper Josh Wicks with a low shot inside his right post.
The Whitecaps took a 2-1 lead in the 66th minute on a beautiful strike from Sebrango, who fired a blast past Wicks at the left post.
Midfielder Justin Moose picked up a loose ball and found forward Nick Webb up the right wing. Webb dribbled in behind the Galaxy defence and played a low cross just above the six-yard box for Sebrango to drill home.
The Galaxy put on the pressure in the closing minutes, but were not able to beat Wicks, who made a string of saves to preserve the victory.
Beckham, who nearly added a goal of his own on a 30-yard free kick that just missed the near post, came out in the 75th minute to a nice ovation from the crowd.
The Galaxy were without MLS scoring leader Landon Donovan, who had a strained calf and did not make the trip.
Earlier in the day, selected members of local U-7 to U-11 soccer clubs got to participate in a pre-game clinic with the Vancouver Whitecaps.
Forty contest winners got to sharpen their skills with Whitecaps coaches and players, who drilled them in dribbling, passing and ball-handling. The Callingwood Teal Twisters were so pumped about the once-in-a-lifetime clinic, they were talking all over each other.
"I want to learn some better defence moves," said Emma Norenberg, 9, who plays midfield and defence.
But most admitted the biggest draw was getting to see Beckham play.
"He's a really good soccer player," said midfielder Danielle Baker, 10.
"And he's kind of cute," said her teammate, Olivia Claramarshall.
They weren't the only ones swooning over Becks.
Female fans held up "I heart Beckham" signs during the game in hopes the British hunk would single them out and respond to their marriage proposals, even from the upper bowl.
© The Vancouver Sun 2008