In a tense game between sides evenly matched, the result often goes to the team with the player capable of conjuring a moment of individual brilliance. Over the years, that team has often been whichever one had David Beckham in the lineup. Despite recently being left off the Great Britain roster for the London Olympics, Becks showed over the weekend that he is still capable of altering the course of a game.
The 37-year-old scored two breathtaking goals for the Los Angeles Galaxy in a 5-3 win over the Portland Timbers on Saturday.
The first goal was a bending, right-footed drive from 35 yards that pulled the Galaxy even after Portland took an early 1-0 lead on a goal by Kris Boyd. Taking a pass from a teammate, Beckham pushed the ball into space out to his right. He then stepped up and fired past diving goalkeeper Troy Perkins.
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It only took a few minutes after that goal for Beckham to push the Galaxy out in front of the home team. In the 24th minute, Beckham stood over a free kick about 25 yards from net, out beyond the penalty area to the right of Perkins's net. The spot-on delivery was curled inside the near post after looping over the Timbers' wall. It was another bit of brilliance that could have been right out of the days when he was wearing the No. 7 for Manchester United.
We wonder if GB manager Stuart Pearce will find himself needing someone capable of just this sort of display over the next few weeks.