MLS

Report: Beckham mulling China move

Hear Beckham talk about his time in LA and his lasting impact on soccer in America.
Hear Beckham talk about his time in LA and his lasting impact on soccer in America.
NESN Marcus Kwesi O'Mard
Share This Story

   
 

David Beckham may be nearing the end of his soccer career, but his celebrity status continues to open doors for him around the world.

The English soccer star reportedly is in talks with Chinese club Shanghai Shenhua about a move to the Far East. He is considering signing a short-term, but lucrative, contract with the club, according to British newspaper The Daily Mirror.

“Sources close to the star suggest he is keen to take up the challenge,” the report says. “Negotiations are likely to continue when the Beckhams return from their Christmas family holiday.”

Beckham recently became a free agent, having ended a six-year stay with the L.A. Galaxy. A host of clubs have reportedly made offers to the 37-year-old, but he has not publicly revealed a preference for one over another.

Privately, he is thought to be excited at the prospect of playing in China and extending his personal brand to the world’s biggest market.

PAPER CHASE

Get the latest rumors as the biggest clubs try to bolster their rosters.

“David always said he wanted one more challenge and he loves the idea of playing in China,” a source told the Mirror. “It will undoubtedly make him a global star. He won’t have just conquered Europe and America, but the Far East too. It is also appealing to Becks as it is very different to anywhere he has played before and he is keen to promote football in places where it isn’t particularly high-profile.

“He is so passionate about the game and likes the idea that he can share that with people who don’t already appreciate it. Talks have begun and while he is on his Christmas break he and Victoria are ­discussing it as a very serious option.”

Shanghai Shenhua has reportedly offered Beckham a contract that would pay him a minimum salary of £250,000 ($403,800) a week. He would also stand to earn at least £20 million ($32.3 million) from endorsement and merchandising deals.

The club rose to prominence in 2012 when it signed Nicolas Anelka and Didier Drogba from Chelsea FC.

NESN
Looking for more scoops on your favorite New England sports teams? Check out NESN.

It has designs of becoming a Chinese superclub, but a boardroom dispute and managerial turmoil muted the effects of those signings and hampered the team’s performances. It finished ninth in the 16-team Chinese Super League (CSL), missing out on the playoffs and next season’s Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Champions League.

Landing Beckham would fix the spotlight on Shanghai Shenhua for at least another year.

Television mogul Simon Fuller, Beckham’s close friend and manager, is reportedly engineering the China move. It could see world soccer’s biggest celebrity land in a city that is expected to one day become the world’s richest.

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by

SOCCER Videos

USMNT's bright future for Russia 2018 Posted: Jul 07, 2014
Cobi Jones discusses some of the young MLS prospects waiting to take over the re...

Best Major League Soccer players in Brazil 2014 Posted: Jul 07, 2014
Cobi Jones tells you who Major League Soccer's standout players are from all the...

Major League Soccer's growth vital to USMNT Posted: Jul 07, 2014
Cobi Jones talks about the state of the MLS and it's impact on the USMNT.

David Villa joins New York City FC Posted: Jun 02, 2014
Spain forward David Villa is eager to start scoring goals for his new club New Y...

Is Landon Donovan the best MLS player ever? Posted: May 27, 2014
Dani Behr and Warren Barton look at Landon Donovan’s record-breaking night and d...