Connect with us

Sports

David Beckham: I want to sign to Ronaldo, Messi

Published

on

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are potential targets for Inter-Miami, co-owner David Beckham said on Wednesday, underscoring his team’s global ambition as they prepare to make their long-awaited Major League Soccer debut this weekend.

Seven years after a tortuous process began, Beckham’s “project” will finally take the field on Sunday when Inter-Miami travel to Los Angeles to face LAFC in their first MLS regular season game.

More than 13 years since he shocked the soccer world by turning his back on Real Madrid to sign with the Los Angeles Galaxy, Beckham remains the biggest name in Major League Soccer.

But maybe not for long, the former England and Manchester United captain hinting his club might take a page from the Galaxy playbook he helped write and go out and sign the game’s biggest stars.

“We really believe in the roster we have, the players that we have we’re really happy with but we have also talked about if we have the opportunity to bring in big name players from Europe into our city we will do that,” Beckham told Reuters.

“Every team in the world would want Messi and Ronaldo in their teams.

“But we always talked about us being different from any other team, which I am sure every other owner says exactly the same thing,” Beckham added.

“So that’s what we will try to do and if we have the opportunity to bring big name players in then great we’re lucky we have an ownership group that has that vision and wants to succeed and has that competitiveness where we want the best players.”

MLS will celebrate its 25th anniversary this season and the league was reminded again on Wednesday of the impact Beckham has had on the league.

Commissioner Don Garber started the day by telling a news conference that; “Without David Major League Soccer probably would not be what it is today”.

The evidence was not hard to find with media outlets from around the world making the trip to New York to interview Beckham, who as always charmed the crowd with his candor and boyish smile.

As part of his deal for joining the Galaxy Beckham was given the chance to buy into an MLS franchise at a reduced price.

In 2013 it was announced Beckham would take up his option and put a team in Miami, but as disputes over stadium sites and local resistance dragged on it seemed as if the idea of a South Florida franchise was doomed.

“I must admit over the seven years there were moments where I doubted this was going to happen,” Beckham said. “There were many frustrations.

“But there wasn’t a moment where I was going to walk away even though there were times it seemed this was not going to happen.

“There never was one moment when I thought Miami was not the right place.”

After all the clubs, all the Champions League and World Cup matches he played in, Beckham says the hardest thing he has ever done was become the owner of a MLS franchise and getting Inter-Miami on the pitch.

“Without a doubt,” Beckham said. “It has been the hardest thing to get it up and running.

“It was a real challenge but one that I knew that was going to happen. Eventually my stubbornness would get me there.

“We have worked very hard especially over the last two years to make this happen and create something special and this weekend will be our reward.”

For anyone thinking Beckham would be an absentee owner leaving the heavy-lifting to co-owner Jorge Mas, the 44-year-old made it clear that was not the case.

He will be a hands-on owner, providing input on everything from player selection to shower tiles.

The club has ambitions not to just be an MLS powerhouse but a global brand much like Beckham himself.

“When you talk about hands on there is no bigger hands on owners than you are looking at right now,” said Beckham, sitting alongside Mas. “Our whole ownership group is hands on.

“That will continue because we care.

“This is not a vanity project it is a legacy for us, for our families.

“I want to create a legacy that my children can turn around in 20 years and say my dad built this club.”

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sports

Wazito fc Boss to pay sacked players over Sh6 million

Published

on

By

The Fifa Dispute Resolution Chamber has ordered Football Kenya Federation Premier League (FKFPL) side Wazito FC to pay five players it sacked over six million shillings cumulative within 45 days.

Ugandan midfielder Mansoor Safi Agu, DR Congo international Piscas Muhindo, Ghanaian Paul Acquah, Liberian Augustine Otu and Togolese defender Issofou Bourhana, through their lawyer Felix Majani, stated the club to the world football governing body seeking compensation for unfair dismissal. Of the five, only Mansoor Safi was dismissed by the club at the beginning of the year while the rest were victims of the recent massive restructuring in the team.

Their cases were presented directly to the Fifa Dispute Resolution Chamber in mid-August and the department has now expedited the matter.

In a previous interview, Wazito CEO Dennis Gicheru admitted he had received demand letters for compensation from some of the sacked players and their representatives as well communication on the same issue from Fifa. He, however, unapologetically said he was not keen on responding to the demand letters.

If Wazito fails to pay the monies within 45 days, the club will face a transfer ban over three windows. The ban will only be lifted after the amounts are paid in full.

The ruling by Fifa could set precedence as far as the speed at which cases regarding the termination of contracts, unfair dismissal of players and the ramifications of the same in the top league in Kenya are concerned.

Earlier this year, the worldwide representative organization of professional footballers, FIFPRO publicly expressed dissatisfaction with how the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) was handling such cases, with a lot of such claims remaining unsettled since 2017.

Continue Reading

Sports

Harambee Stars exclude four top-tier players

Published

on

By

Harambee Stars will miss the services of the  influential quartet of Victor Wanyama, Arnold Origi, Ayub Timbe and Michael Olunga when they face Zambia in the Africa Cup of Nations build-up match against Zambia on Friday.

The four were omitted yesterday when Football Kenya Federation released a final squad for the match set to be staged at the Moi Stadium, Kasarani behind closed doors. “The four will not be available for the match,” said FKF’S communications chief Ken Okaka.

The experienced players were part of the 34-man provisional squad released last week by coach Francis Kimanzi who will use the match to gauge his readiness for the November qualifier double against Comoros.

Origi, who plies his trade with Finland side HIFK Fotboll, was supposed to make his comeback to the team after five years in the cold. In the absence of the revered custodian, Kimanzi will pick the starter from the Zambian based Ian Otieno and national U-23  and Ulinzi Stars  goalkeeper Timothy Odhiambo.

With Wanyama unavailable, all eyes will be on Kimanzi’s choice for the captaincy. Prior to his lengthy hiatus from the team, the former Maritzburg centre back Brian Mandela who made it to the team despite being unattached served as Wanyama’s deputy alongside Musa Mohammed.

Former Gor Mahia defender Joash Onyango skippered the team during last year’s Cecafa Senior Challenge in Uganda. Having established himself as Stars preferred centre forward, the unavailability of the red-hot Olunga will leave Kimanzi with no options other than to try a new formation upfront.

Algerian-based Masud Juma is likely to fill in Olunga shoes with reigning Cecafa top scorer Oscar Wamalwa, AFC Leopards striker Elvis Rupia and Zambia-based Timothy Otieno offering options.

Meanwhile Kimanzi recalled Bandari’s wing-wizard Abdallah Hassan to replace Timbe Hassan  was part of the Stars team which scooped bronze in the past Cecafa championship.

Yesterday, eleven local-based players reported to camp and were screened for Covid-19  in line with the protocols sanctioned by the Ministry  of Sports. Foreign-based players were expected to start checking into camp  last night.

Continue Reading

Sports

Why did Kipchoge loose the London Marathon

Published

on

By

When race commentator Steve Cram announced “this is not normal” midway through Sunday’s London Marathon it was something of an understatement as Eliud Kipchoge, the most dominant performer the distance has ever seen, was finally looking mortal.

An hour later, Kipchoge trailed home eighth in a time six minutes slower than his own world record and over a minute adrift of Ethiopia’s Shura Kitata, who won the race after a spectacular sprint finish in two hours, 05.41 minutes.

The Kenyan had finally cracked just under three miles from the end, later saying he was suffering from a blocked ear that affected his breathing and cramp in his hip, but refusing to blame the cold, wet conditions for his poor run.

It was no surprise that he looked slightly bemused as he tried to articulate what had happened, having never previously experienced what almost every other marathon runner at every level has a bad day at the office.

His record over the distance almost defies belief. He posted in his Twitter account that one of his ears blocked, and it could not open anymore.

The Ineos Challenge record holder has however promised to fight for the title another day.

“But this is how the sport is, we should accept defeat and focus for the winning next time. Thanks for the support,” Kipchoge said. He added “If you want to enjoy sport then you have to accept the results. I congratulate the top finishers, and that is how to enjoy the sport.”

He has appreciated Kenyans and his fans for the tremendous support, saying that he is taking the defeat in a positive way.

The race was won by Ethiopian Shura Kitata in a thrilling sprint finish to claim an unexpected victory ahead of Kenyan Vincent Kipchumba.

Continue Reading

Trending