Donovan out, Beckham a go for Canadian friendly

May 12, 2008

EDMONTON, Alberta -- Landon Donovan will miss the Los Angeles Galaxy's friendly against the Vancouver Whitecaps after MLS' top goal-scorer stayed home Monday when the team flew to Canada.

Donovan, who strained his right calf over the weekend, has teamed up with superstar David Beckham on 11 of the Galaxy's 14 goals and seven of 15 assists.

Beckham didn't speak to reporters but stopped briefly before jumping on the team bus to sign jerseys and posters from a throng of cheering fans at the Edmonton International Airport.

"Welcome to Edmonton, David. We love you!" shouted two fans as the 33-year-old star midfielder initially appeared to try to avoid the adoring crush by walking behind the team's luggage cart after the team cleared customs.

"I'm thrilled. It's so exciting. He's been my favorite player forever," said Kerri Krawchuk, holding up a box containing a plastic action figure of Beckham that the star signed.

It will be round two of the cross-border grudge match.

In November, the squads played to a scoreless draw before more than 48,000 fans at Vancouver's B.C. Place Stadium.

This season, Beckham has three goals and four assists for the Galaxy, which is 2-3-2. The former member of Manchester United and Real Madrid is under contract to play 45 minutes in Edmonton.

Ticket sales for the game at Commonwealth Stadium have reached 30,000 with organizers hoping the walk-up will match or exceed the B.C. figure.


Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press