Published February 01, 2013
| Sports Network
Philadelphia, PA – When David Beckham announced last December he was leaving the Los Angeles Galaxy, there was rampant speculation as to where the 37-year-old midfielder would land.
He reportedly had offers from clubs in China and Australia, but what better place for an international icon to play than Paris?
Paris Saint-Germain's capture of Beckham's signature on Thursday put an end to the speculation, and the capital club is the perfect place for Beckham to put a bow on his fantastic career, which began at Manchester United when he was just 17 years old.
Things began to heat up between the parties in early 2012 while Beckham was still under contract with the Galaxy, as he was approached by PSG about a transfer to the club, but he declined the move.
"Last year, it was not the right time," Beckham told the assembled media at Thursday's introductory press conference. "I still wanted to do great things with Los Angeles, winning a title."
On the field, however, some will argue that the former England captain's move to Paris was a questionable one.
PSG's midfield is a crowded place with the likes of Jeremy Menez, Thiago Motta, Javier Pastore and Lucas Moura occupying starting spots on a regular basis, so it seems unlikely that Beckham will get many starts.
He certainly will not shy away from the moment, though, should manager Carlo Ancelotti call his number.
"It will be Carlo Ancelotti's decision," Beckham remarked when asked if he would compete for a spot in the starting 11. "I just want to give the best of myself, as I have always done. In all the clubs I've played, I invested 150 percent. This will be the case here."
He definitely could be used as a substitute, as age has done nothing to diminish his ability to strike precise set pieces.
Beckham also should help raise the profile of the French first division, which has recently become a feeder league for the English Premier League.
In this most recent transfer window alone, strikers Loic Remy (Marseille), and Yoan Gouffran (Bordeaux), defenders Mathieu Debuchy (Lille) and Mapou Yanga- Mbiwa (Montpellier), and midfielder Moussa Sissoko (Toulouse) have all jettisoned Ligue 1 in favor of England's top flight.
But with Beckham joining forces with one of the world's best goal scorers in Swedish striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, the pair could push PSG up to the same level as Manchester United or Real Madrid.
Les Parisiens are set to tangle with Spanish side Valencia in the UEFA Champions League round of 16 later this month. They should get past the Spanish club rather easily, but if the capital club makes it to the final, PSG will have arrived as a major player in world football.
Off the field, it makes sense for Beckham to come to Paris for family reasons, as his wife and children, who will remain in London while Beckham is with PSG, are only a short flight or train ride away.
Ahead of Friday's tilt against Toulouse, PSG sit at the top of the Ligue 1 table, even with Lyon on 45 points, but Les Rouges-et-Bleu occupy the top spot on goal difference.
If PSG can remain atop the Ligue 1 table when the calendar turns to May, Beckham will claim a championship in a fourth different country.
While it remains to be seen how much he can contribute on the pitch, PSG is the perfect landing spot for the world's most recognizable soccer icon.