David Beckham: Goals of 2012

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Football News

David Beckham lowered the curtain on his career as an LA Galaxy a week ago in the perfect circumstances, as the club he had served for over five years successfully defended the MLS Cup.

The Galaxy defeated Houston Dynamo 3-1 and, although Beckham had no direct part to play in any of the goals, he left the Home Depot Center pitch for the final time to a standing ovation from the appreciative crowd.

Beckham may not have contributed as he would have liked in the final, the former Manchester United midfielder can leave Los Angeles knowing his final season was his best in the MLS.

The ex-Real Madrid ace departs LA Galaxy with a record of 20 goals in 116 games, with almost half of those strikes (eight) coming in his final campaign with the club.

Beckham also contributed nine assists last term and, although it fails to surpass his best tally of 15, the 37-year-old will feel like he played a particularly prominent role in LA Galaxy's success last term.

With one of the finest dead ball techniques the game has ever seen, it comes as no great surprise that a number of Beckham's goals from 2012 left purists purring. In fact, so good were his strikes, that LA Galaxy are running a Goal of the Year contest just for Beckham.

Five of his eight goals are deemed worthy enough to be considered for recognition, and LA Galaxy are encouraging fans to vote for their favourite on the club's official website.

Portland Timbers face the ignominy of being the only team to feature on the receiving end of two Beckham goals in the shortlist, and it could even have been three following his impressive double against them in July.

Both strikes included against the Timbers are almost identical, with Beckham opening out onto his trusty right-boot and swerving the ball into the top corner from open play.

Two goals on the five-goal shortlist is made up by far more trademark, but far from less impressive, free-kicks from Beckham - with Montreal and Vancouver on the the victims of classic curling efforts.

The final entry is another example of vintage Beckham bend, although this time the former England captain somehow manages to find the net direct from a corner-kick.

Beckham's haul of eight goals in 2012 was his best since his final season with Manchester United in 2002-03 - during which he scored 11 times - but this year can be considered his best in terms of quality of goal.

The veteran's goals tally is likely to diminish next season, with the overwhelming influence he had with LA Galaxy unlikely to be replicated following an expected move to Paris Saint-Germain.

There will, however, surely be time for Beckham to register at least one more typical blow from a set-piece before he decides to hang up his boots for good.

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