This is something we’ve been hearing since 2007. David Beckham has a clause in his contract with Major League Soccer that once he retires, he can buy a MLS franchise.
That much was true with his five-year deal in MLS and it is true once again with his new two-year deal.
“I have the option of owning a franchise, and that excites me,” Beckham said at a news conference yesterday in Los Angeles.
“He made it very clear to us we have to sort this through, that he’s going to exercise his option to be an owner in Major League Soccer,” Leiweke said. “We have a commitment to help him when that time comes and my guess is that, unless that’s part of the Galaxy, we’re going to be competing with him on and off the pitch.”
“The partners in the league have structured that option in a way that will allow David to become a partner in the league, to become an owner in the league at some point in the near future and operate and run his own franchise, and we’re going to encourage that,” he said. “Unless I’m mistaken, that’s his future once he does make a decision to retire.”
I won’t get into where Beckham could land as an owner today. That horse has been beaten enough over the last couple years that we know it won’t be in a few places like LA or New York.
From the sounds of things, owning a MLS franchise is still very important to Beckham. Think about it for a moment, what Beckham and his brand mean to MLS. This shows that once he hangs up his boots for good that his brand will still have a lasting image in this league.
Like him or not, Beckham has done a ton for MLS and having him be an owner one day in this league is good in my eyes.
Will he be the owner of the 20th club in MLS? Or will he be ushering in a new era in MLS that is going beyond 20 clubs? Or lastly, will he be owning a club that already exists that is being moved (probably the least likely)?
Time will tell.
Obviously we’re now at least two years away from really knowing the true nature of this clause in his contract. We know the basics – he can become an owner – and that he plans on exercising that agreement. The rest we’ll have to wait and see as the next couple of seasons unfold.