CARSON, Calif. – The lead-up to MLS Cup has been all David Beckham, all the time.
Ever since he decided to announce that MLS Cup 2012 against Houston would represent his final match in MLS, the LA Galaxy’s English star has dominated the headlines. He’s been featured on SportsCenter. He’s the only player to have the solo press conference at the Home Depot Center.
“My mom thinks it’s all about Tally Hall,” said Houston ‘keeper Tally Hall after his team’s final practice on Friday afternoon. “It is what it is. If it [the attention surrounding Beckham] brings more people watching the game, then so be it. I want to have more people watching us win.”
The Dynamo veteran netminder encapsulated the mood of his club in the face of the Beckham whirlwind.
WATCH: Kinnear and Davis press conference
“As I said earlier, not disrespectfully, but I just don’t care that it’s his last game,” Hall said when asked about the frenzy around Beckham. “If he changes his mind and came back next year, I’d be happy. But if he leaves, I’d still be happy because life is good.”
“No, we’re not talking about David Beckham’s last game," said Houston manager Dominic Kinnear during a pregame press conference. “We’re not dumb. We’re not blind and deaf to what’s going on around us. But our talk tomorrow is about 1:55 local time getting ready to play against these guys, not what they’re doing after the game.”
The Dynamo made it a point to tip their cap to Beckham’s contributions to MLS during his six-year stint for LA, but as Houston captain Brad Davis said: “That’s not what makes our world go ‘round. I was playing before he came here and hopefully will be playing after he leaves.”
The stark contrast between the low-profile, team-oriented Dynamo and the star-studded Galaxy continues to be one of the fascinating aspects of MLS Cup for the second year running.
"We’re not the big name guys in this league and we understand that,” Houston defender Bobby Boswell said. “We’re just the hard-working guys and we’re happy to be where we are. … Let the focus be on them. We understand LA is LA.
"I think as long as we’re holding that trophy tomorrow, it doesn’t bother us.”