Now the question becomes, Who will replace Beckham in L.A.? A good indication came last week from Tim Leiweke, the president of AEG, which currently owns the Galaxy. Nearly six years after stunning the sports world by landing Beckham, Leiweke told SI he's targeting Kaká, Real Madrid's 30-year-old Brazilian midfielder, who was the FIFA World Player of the Year in 2007. "We're well aware of Kaká's interest in MLS, and we in turn have made very clear to him [our interest]," Leiweke said. "We have a great relationship with Real Madrid, and just as we worked [to procure] a player from them six years ago [Beckham], I'm absolutely convinced we could find the right deal this time too."
For his part, Beckham just happens to be a friend and former AC Milan teammate of Kaká's—and is perhaps perfectly positioned to make the soft sell. "Most clubs would like Kaká to come," Beckham said last Saturday. "He's a great talent, a hard worker and one of the most professional players I've ever played with. If there was any chance of bringing him to the Galaxy, I'm sure the owners would do anything possible."
Considering that those owners might soon include Beckham himself, there was a tantalizing prospect for the Galaxy during the championship celebration.
A defining chapter in U.S. soccer history ended on Saturday—but another one may be about to start.