CARSON, Calif. &
David Beckham's London-to-Los Angeles commute had a wild ending, with the tackling of the English superstar sparking a fight in the Los Angeles Galaxy's 3-0 loss to Chivas USA.
About six hours after deplaning from London, Beckham played the entire 90 minutes Thursday night for the third time in six days. He was limping near the end, but it appeared to be more out of fatigue than further problems with his nagging left ankle injury.
"He looked hobbled," Galaxy coach Frank Yallop said. "I used him tonight and I shouldn't have done that."
Beckham wasn't made available to reporters after the game.
An announced capacity crowd of 27,000 &
camera flashes popping on Beckham's corner kicks &
saw the Galaxy's $6.5 million dollar man show his temper for the first time.
He turned feisty after being tackled from behind by Jesse Marsch of Chivas USA during injury time at the end of the first half of the Major League Soccer game between the two rivals who share Home Depot Center.
Marsch came running up behind Beckham and applied a high kick to the Galaxy captain's upper right hip, causing Beckham to fall forward.
"He kind of got a piece of me the play before that and so it was somewhat of a retaliation, somewhat of a tactical foul because he was on the break," Marsch said. "It was harder than I would have liked it to have been. I apologized to him and I told him I respect what he's about. He was kind of done with me though."
Beckham got up and ran over to Marsch, yelling inches from his face. A grim-faced Marsch stood his ground while Beckham was pulled away by teammate Edson Buddle. Beckham continued yelling at Marsch and swung his right arm when the referee tried to grab him and usher him away.
A shoving match ensued between the teams, which Beckham quickly backed out of and circled around. Defender Alex Zotinca of Chivas USA head-butted Galaxy midfielder Kevin Harmse in the scrum, and Harmse threw a punch at Zotinca. Both received red cards.
"It was two teams standing up for guys on their team," Marsch said. "I think everybody respects him over there and I hope that guys respect what I'm all about here. I appreciate all my teammates sticking together."
Beckham was in the starting lineup after spending the last four days with the England team, including playing the entire game in a 2-1 loss against Germany at Wembley Stadium on Wednesday night.
He failed to connect on a couple of first-half free kicks, and near the end, as 5 a.m. London time approached, a tired Beckham had Carlos Pavon handle a corner kick.
"It wasn't the intention to play him at all, but he came in and said that he felt OK," Yallop said. "In our situation, we need points. I didn't want to leave him on, but at 2-nil you try for maybe one set piece or one bit of magic by David."
Yallop said he couldn't envision Beckham playing at Colorado on Sunday.
Also returning from Europe were Galaxy forward Landon Donovan and defender Jonathan Bornstein of Chivas USA. They played for the United States in a 1-0 loss to Sweden on Wednesday.
Donovan entered in the 59th minute as a substitute for teammate Cobi Jones. Bornstein didn't play.
"I was exhausted. I'm sure David was too," Donovan said. "Obviously, he wasn't the sharpest he's ever been because of all the traveling and the game last night. You could tell at the end he could barely move, but we don't have many options."
Maykel Galindo scored twice in the second half, including his team-leading 10th goal of the season, for Chivas USA (10-6-3), winner of four of its last five. Francisco Mendoza completed the scoring in the 88th minute.
"It was kind of a big stage for us," Marsch said. "We really showed up and did the things that we've been good at lately and took control of the game."
The entire match was chippy. There were five yellow cards and the two ejections, although none of them went to Beckham.
"It's not the worst result I've had since I've been here, but it's pretty close," Yallop said.
The Galaxy (3-9-5) lost its fourth straight MLS match and owns the second-worst record in the league.
David Beckham gets tackled, sparking fight as Chivas USA defeats Galaxy
CARSON, Calif. &