By Kevin Koczwara
The Los Angeles Galaxy have come close to winning the MLS Cup the last two years. In 2009, the Galaxy lost in a shootout in the MLS Cup Final to Real Salt Lake. In 2010, the Galaxy were upset by FC Dallas in the quarter-finals of the Cup playoffs after dominating the regular season and winning the Community Shield – given out to the team with the best regular season record in Major League Soccer.
Los Angeles claimed much of, if not all of, the prime-time television slots the MLS owned this year because the team has the league’s most recognizable faces, David Beckham and Landon Donovan and one of best overall attendance record of any team. The Galaxy had the away average attendance and second best home attendance numbers, (Home: 21,436; Away 18,522) thanks to the team’s high profile players and its winning ways.
Galaxy owner Philip Anschutz and his holding company AEG, Anschutz Entertainment Group, have not shied away from splashing cash around for big-name players and top of the line talent. Anschutz wanted Landon Donovan, he got him. Anshutz wanted to bring in Beckham to boost ticket sales and make the Galaxy the most dominant brand in the MLS. He did it immediately after the MLS introduced the Designated Player rule, aka the “Beckham Rule.”